The Club site at High Onn in Staffordshire was fully booked for the Friday of the August Bank Holiday weekend, so to get a period of ten days, I had to delay my departure. I thought the quietest day for travel would be on the Sunday of the Holiday weekend, and so I was ready to set off by eight o’clock. Within ten miles, I’d reached Junction 10 of the M25, and although the motorway was busy, I got to the turn for the M40 without meeting any congestion. At 80 miles into the journey, I took a coff
During its twenty years, my Avondale has probably not had a change of friction pads in its Winterhoff tow hitch. Certainly they haven't been changed during the last ten years in my ownership, and with the indicator rod moving away from its start line, I decided it was time for a change. There’s a variety of prices to be found online, so it pays to shop around.
The chassis manual says “The pads are very easy to change if worn”. Never-the-less, I decided to remove the hitch from the va
On a Wednesday I set off to the West Country for a two week stay. For the first week, I’d booked a site close to where my two girls and grandson were going to stay. The girls in a rented house and grandson at university. My destination was Falmouth, a journey of some 270 miles distance.
Within ten miles of leaving home, I’d reached junction 10 of the M25 and although it was still only 6.30 in the morning, the motorway was busy, but moving well. After 9 miles on the M25, my route would be th
I was ready to head for home with all the gear packed away, the legs were up and the van was hitched on. Only the lights to check before leaving – and it’s a tedious job when you’re a solo caravanner. Fortunately, a passing dog walker helped me out. All correct – except that I only had three tail lights. The near-side cluster light wasn’t lit. A judicious tap, and it came on, but almost immediately went off again. I decided to leave it for later since I was driving in day-light.
Not until y
When Covid prevented my winter trip to Spain last year, my two daughters joined me during October for a holiday in a mobile home at Westward Ho in Devon. We enjoyed it so much that we decided that sometime in the future, we would return to the same site. Although it was only two weeks since I got back from Winchester, we packed our bags and were ready to leave on Friday morning. Our route to North Devon was via the M25; M3; A303 and the A39 – a journey of just over 200 miles.
In addition to the 230-volt lights, my caravan was fitted with four fluorescent ceiling lights, which were OK and all working well, but if there’s room for an improvement at a modest cost, I like to modify. So the improvement with the change to LED is that they provide a similar amount of light, but at a reduced demand on the 12 volt battery. So for the past few weeks, I’ve been converting the fluorescent fittings to LED.. After the fitting has been removed from the ceiling, it needs to
With the lifting of restrictions and the re-opening of the caravan sites, I made a booking to stay at the Caravan Club site – Morn Hill which is close to both the M3 and to the City of Winchester. I arrived just after mid-day, so there was a good choice of pitches. The site is split into two levels – a higher field where reception is situated, and another field lower down the hill. Since both areas have their own entry barrier, it’s as though they were two separate sites. All the pitches are on
On one of the wet days earlier in the week I fitted a Truma Sonatic Gas Level System into my elderly Avondale. The Sonatic system is a piece of kit which was developed fifteen or so years ago and it was fitted as standard equipment in some caravans. At the time a reviewer wrote about it saying, “As far as I know, this is the only device that actually gives you a true reading of the contents of the bottle. A transceiver unit beneath the bottle sends and receives ultrasonic pulses to sens
I described on the forum how my gas locker door became damaged. For the sake of others who might face a similar problem, here follows a description of how I dealt with the repair.
To remove the infill panel from the door frame, there are twenty or so screws to remove from the inside frame. The panel might be reluctant to move because when it was assembled, mastic was applied to waterproof the joint. Once I got it out I gave up on the idea of simply refacing the
So that’s it! September’s decision is confirmed There’ll be no drive to Portsmouth next Sunday afternoon to board the Bilbao Ferry. For the first time since 1995, it’s going to be an English winter at home. And it will probably come as a relief to my daughters. I know they were fearful about sitting on a plane to spend Christmas with me in Spain.
As something of a consolation, after talking with the girls, we made a ‘spur of the moment’ decision for the three
The battery condition meter fitted in my old Avondale caravan was a simple pointer registering on a red/yellow/green scale. But twenty years on, I felt it was time for something better, so on a wet afternoon a couple of weeks ago, I decided to fit a digital volt meter. I’d previously purchased item 352627865033 from ebay.
With the electric disconnected from the van, I took out the control panel, then unplugged the mains supply together with the connectors for the fridge,
When I was away on my last caravan tour, I got up one morning to find there was no water at the taps. After breakfast, I set about trying to find out why. With the tap opened, there was no voltage at the pump socket and the impeller appeared to be seized. Replacing the blade fuse restored the power to the socket, and my cheapo reserve pump kept the taps supplied (rather sluggishly) for the remainder of my stay. However later in the day, I found the pump was working, but without raising any water
When my two daughters mentioned that they were going to Cornwall to spend a week at Falmouth to help my grandson Sam, move from his halls of residence on his university campus into a shared rented property, I decided it was too good an opportunity to miss by not joining them, with me driving down with the caravan.
Although it’s less than three weeks since I arrived home from Bourton-on-the-Water, I quickly got busy looking for a pitch. But that was easier said than done. I was looking for t
Since I got back from my Spanish winter trip in March, I have been wishing and waiting to spend some time in Gloucestershire. Once the Clubs announced a limited re-opening of their sites, lots of caravanners must have had the same desire to get away, for it was quite difficult to find a pitch for a continuous period of more than a few days. Finally I got a booking at the Caravan Club site at Bourton on the Water.
Living close to the London/Surrey border, a journey from home always begins wi
If your caravan is getting on in years and it gets a lot of use, you would be well advised to take a look at your hot water supply pipe where it leaves the top of the Truma boiler. The 12mm plastic pipe is described as being ‘semi-rigid’ however with age and constant heating up, the first few inches of the pipe eventually becomes hard and brittle – although it may appear to be sound.
During my recent stay in Spain, as I refilled the Aquaroll one morning, I n
What I’ve been dreading arrived earlier in the week……………….Having to think about heading for home. I’d spent the morning cleaning then removing from the awning the oven, the microwave and all the furniture. Most of it went in the car but the microwave went on the floor in the end bathroom. It’s useful to have it there to use it on the journey home.
After lunch, I did what I do most days, I took a ride down the hill, along the main road to the prom,
Today’s destination would be a trip down memory lane. Even when Sheila and I went there some twenty-five years ago, the village was number one on the tourist trail. And seeing the number of coaches in the coach park, it undoubtedly still is. Where I was heading was the village of Mijas just inland from Torremolinos.
As I arrived, the first new thing I noticed was the multi-story car park, which like the village itself, is built into the hillside. And it’s huge. I drove t
The good weather was still with us so time for another day out. Looking at the maps, I chose a circular route through the mountains, parts of which I’ve done before and some that would be new ground. This was my route.
The drive began with seven miles in a westerly direction along the A7, before turning inland along the familiar valley bottom. Although I’ve already visited Viñuela three times this winter, I couldn’t resist pulling into the car park. I never tire of looki
From the time my two daughters went home, it hasn’t been the best of times. They flew out at the beginning of the month to help me celebrate my birthday. No sooner had they gone than the weather went down hill, finally ending with Storm Gloria. The east coast suffered much worse than the southern shore, but we certainly had our share of rain. Malaga City also had a hail storm which left the streets buried for a short time under a 12 inch depth of ice. In our area the period of poor weather culmi
No sooner was daughter, Jenny back home after spending Christmas week in Spain, than she was packing to fly out again, together with her sister and partner. This time to help me celebrate my birthday. They don’t normally come for the 6th of January but as this one ended in a nought, they considered it special. In fact it was my 90th. So on Saturday, I headed along the A7 to Malaga Airport to collect them. Although they were to be here for only three nights, they had been able to book the same lo
On Saturday daughter Jen arrived at Malaga Airport for a week’s stay over the Christmas period. She booked online for an apartment not too far from the site – an apartment which was identical to the one both daughters used three Christmases ago – identical because the two apartments happened to be next door to one another.
Having given her time to get settled, I later returned to her apartment, collected her and we drove into Nerja for dinner at one of our favourite restaurants —The Mirasol
The usual good weather had suddenly deserted us when we got a couple of days of dark skies and almost constant rain. But the forecast insisted that by Sunday the weather would be back to normal. And it was. Sunday broke without a cloud in the sky and very soon the sun was coming up. Which was just as well, because today was the date set for the Migas Festival in Torrox Pueblo – the last Sunday before Christmas Day. The Spanish are never want
Only ninety miles to do before reaching Camping Sierracillia however, I left Villsom at Seville at 9.15. I wanted to be there before lunch so that I could get out sight-seeing during the afternoon. Google maps suggested the first few miles cross-country but it showed no less than 22 junctions or roundabouts in the first nine miles.. I opted for the long way round, doing an extra six miles via the A4 up to Seville, then the ring road to the A92. Having programmed Tomtom with the GPS
The drive from Merida to Seville was only 130 miles and since I did it without a break, I arrived at the site in time for an early lunch. Camping Villsom is a wooded site laid out on a red sandy ground, consequently the sand is easily transferred from shoes to car or caravan. It does however drain quickly after rain. There’s only the one toilet block to one side of the site which has obviously been refurbished to a quite high standard. The electric bollards are situated in the ce
Yes! There was a definite improvement in the weather. At least the rain had stopped. I only had 50miles to do to reach Merida – my next planned stop, so there was no great hurry
to leave Caceres
In fact, it was nearly 11 oclock before I departed and headed north for a few miles to reach the nearest motorway junction. An hour & 10 mins later, I arrived at Camping Merida. Reception was closed, with a notice in the window to the effect that I