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Susan D

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Everything posted by Susan D

  1. Sorry, don't know what went on with the two near identical posts there! Major editing fail!
  2. We are Mr. D, our 11year old daughter, and myself. We knew that our daughter would be using the bedroom, so that Mr. D and I could be free to eat and drink in the living room later in the evening, while she was in bed. We chose a twin bedroom so she could have a bed to sleep, and we fashioned a sort of sofa with long bolster pillows and large scatter cushions on the other bed. It was important that we had a central bathroom so that people could use the toilet at night without having to walk through a bedroom to do so. Our van is stored on our drive so that meant the length - and width - were limited, as was our budget, obviously. Oh, and we wanted a new van. With all that, the only one ticked all the boxes, and was available at a nearby dealer, was the 2019 Elddis Avante 574 that we ended up buying. And so far we are very pleased with it. If we still have this van when our daughter no longer wishes to come on holiday with us, we'll probably put a custom sized block of memory foam on a long, low stool between the twin beds, to sort of make them into a king size bed area for the two of us. It'll mean we'll lose the use of the chest of drawers, but there's bags of storage elsewhere. The decor is very neutral, cream and beige, but we don't mind, we just work with it. I ordered two sets of bedding in shades that complement it nicely. That was important to me.
  3. We are Mr. D, our 11year old daughter, and myself. We knew that our daughter would be using the bedroom, so that Mr. D and I could be free to eat and drink in the living room later in the evening, while she was in bed. We discounted the bunks with dinette option, as she was growing fast ,so would soon outgrow them. We therefore chose a twin bedroom - with 2 ft 4 one beds - so she could have a bed to sleep, and we fashioned a sort of sofa with long bolster pillows and large scatter cushions on the other bed. TV on wall stand, proper solid sliding door, and she has her own private space, very important for an adolescent. It was important that we had a central bathroom so that people could use the toilet at night without having to walk through a bedroom to do so. This also has a solid door, so you can close off the whole bathroom. This creates a pretty effective sound barrier, so our daughter can e.g. watch a dvd in the bedroom, while we listen to the radio or watch TV in the living room, without either disturbing the other. So we have our own privacy. Our van is stored on our drive so that meant the length - and width - were limited, as was our budget, obviously. We wanted to buy a new van. With all that, the only one ticked all the boxes, and was available at a nearby dealer, was the 2019 Elddis Avante 574 that we ended up buying. And so far we are very pleased with it. If we still have this van when our daughter no longer wishes to come on holiday with us, we'll probably put a custom sized block of memory foam on a long, low stool between the twin beds, to sort of make them into a king size bed area for the two of us. It'll mean we'll lose the use of the chest of drawers, but there's bags of storage elsewhere.
  4. Our daughter and I use a bathrobe plus bath towel, while Mr. D eschews such unmanly apparel and only uses a towel. Miss D's and my towel and robe never get particularly wet, as drying oneself is more evenly distributed iyswim. Whereas Mr. D's sole towel gets really damp. Anyway, I have stuck three hooks to the washroom wall, to add to the two on the inside of the door. Two higher, one lower. On the lower one is a coat hanger - the type with a horizontal bar - over which is hung the hand towel. On one of the higher hooks is another hanger of the same type, over which is hung Mr. D's bath towel. On one of the hooks on the door is a hanger with my bathrobe on, next to it I hang my not soaking towel, just straight on the hook. In the twin bedroom, which our daughter uses, I put two hooks on the wall, one holds her bath towel, the other her robe on a hanger, like myself. We find that they usually dry fairly well this way, no problem in summer when the air is warmer and drier. In autumn and winter the blown air heating is on which helps - one of the outlets allows for some of the the warm air to be directed into the washroom. Also, I put an Aero 360 dehumidifier, which we had anyway, on the shelf below the washroom sink, which helps dry the towels in there. They're usually dry within 24 hours, ready for the next use.
  5. 3 nights, Westlands Country Park,, near Kirkpatrick Fleming, Dumfries and Galloway. Our total, 38 nights, forum total, 387 nights..
  6. Ah, boo! I hadn't realised that, sorry. I'm sorry you won't be able to get away then. In our case, I think gov Scot is being rather cowardly about the whole business, effectively saying, if you've booked beforehand, go ahead, but if you hadn't, you really shouldn't, but umm, arr, the sites are still open as usual, so we can't stop you, we'll just try to guilt trip you, because we daren't shut all hospitality and tourism down again, like in March, because of the uproar that would cause. This move has led to people cancelling bookings and losing money, or deciding against booking a trip, thereby depriving a business of a potential booking, despite the fact that it's not actually against rules or regulations up here.
  7. That isn't true, the government website states you can go on a booked holiday: "You can still go on holiday outside of the affected local areas, but you should only do this with people you live with" From https://www.gov.uk/guidance/merseyside-halton-and-warrington-local-restrictions#travel-restrictions If I were you I would contact the site, and if they are still happy for you to stay there, I would be going. We're in the Scotland central belt, which has similar restrictions, and have three nights booked on a site near Annan. We have contacted the site and they are expecting us as usual. As with the two weeks we spent in England in July, and the four weekends we've enjoyed closer to home since then, we will be staying on a fully serviced pitch, using our own facilities, taking our own food and drink, and enjoying walks outdoors, no sitting in pubs or mixing with anyone outside our family. We'll just enjoy a change of scenery. So long as sites remain open, and we are allowed to visit them, we will. They need our custom, now more than ever, if we want them to be still operating at the end of all this. Our stays involve minimal risk, so we enjoy them without guilt. I recommend others do the same.
  8. This reminds me why we haven't bothered joining either of the clubs. Plenty of other sites, big, small and in between, to choose from. Like many others, we had several holidays and weekend trips, with the van and otherwise, booked and paid for, pre lockdown, all cancelled and refunded. Then when the parks opened up again in July, we still managed to get two weeks away by searching online and phoning around for suitable sites. Plus we've enjoyed several weekends away, after our main holiday, at sites closer to home. No need to book multiple sites for the same week(s), it just needed a bit of flexibility. Similarly, we have a fortnight booked in Devon for next July, again, paid for to take advantage of the early booker discount. If that falls through, we'll just organise. And to top it all, all our stays have been on fully serviced pitches, which we prefer for a more relaxing break. So, independent and non CMC sites all the way for us.
  9. Yes, we use the whole cooker, hob - including electric hotplate, grill, oven, the lot. Hotplate to boil the kettle (space for a plug in kettle is limited), gas rings to cook stirfries etc. Grill for toast, oven for various meals, pizzas oven chips etc. Plus the microwave to do veg, heat tins of soup, those packs of micro rice, couscous etc. So, nothing particularly fancy, but we regularly use all cooking facilities in our van, in fact, every time we stay in it.
  10. 3 nights, The Woods Caravan Park, Clackmannanshire. Our total, 34 nights, group total 291.
  11. Forgot to mention the overnight at Tebay southbound before travelling to Staffordshire. So 31 nights for our 2020 total so far.
  12. All this is putting me off joining the clubs even more. My experience of sites so far has generally been, either all pitches are the same size wise, serviced etc. so just choose a vacant one on arrival, or, enter your van size, awning requirements etc. when booking, then you are allocated a suitable specific pitch. We prefer that. Talking of not using the facilities on a f.s. pitch, I'm reminded of our stay at a small (non club) site in Staffordshire immediately post lockdown. All fully serviced pitches. A middle aged couple in a very new looking little caravan a set up on the neighbouring pitch, aquaroll and wastemaster connected. Then looked around, nipped out in their car and returned with lengths of fresh and wastewater piping, plus a float for the aquaroll. For to make their post lockdown break all the more relaxing. Good call.
  13. Hasn't happened to us yet, but that could be because three months after we bought our van, somebody turns head, looks skyward and whistles brought the cooker lid down on the still cooling hotplate, necessitating a visit to the nearest caravan supplies shop to purchase a new lid, or pack of three, actually as they were only stocked that way. Much clearing of fragments of glass later, new lid firmly screwed in place, and touch safety glass, it hasn't budged through numerous journeys. I think we'd best make a point of periodic tightening of the screws to be safe, though.
  14. In our case, leaving it on Eco constantly means it only uses 3.3A as opposed to 6,5 (or whatever it is) on the full 70°C setting, so we don't overload the EHU, especially in winter when we're running the heating. As I said, 55° is ideal for general handwashing, and it takes very little time to raise it to 70 when needed. It suits us that way, anyway. Sorry, bit of thread drift!
  15. Do you have an eco setting? Our Whale water does, it's 55°C (standard setting is 70°C same as the Truma). We leave ours on the eco setting all the time on EHU as it's ideal for handwashing, then just top it up to 70 for showers and dishwashing.
  16. Don't some of those monster RVs have an onboard garage at the back? Press a button and out pops a "little" runaround car? I wouldn't be surprised if they did.
  17. This might fit the bill, but I'm not sure if you can get Dethleffs caravans directly from UK dealers? https://www.dethleffs.de/en/caravans/modelpage/pimmodels/pimmodel/cjoy/480-qlk/ The fact is that with UK vans, you are highly unlikely to have a fixed beds of any sort at opposite ends of a van. There will almost always be a sofa bed arrangement in the front living area, with variations on double, twin or bunk beds at the other end. Also, where do you envisage dining, and how many are to dine at any one time? With e.g. the Elddis/Compass 586, there are bunks at the rear, and you could leave the front sofa bed permanently made up (which you say you don't want to), but the side dinette only sits two. As you have seen, you are far more likely to find fixed beds at both ends in continental vans, chiefly French or German layouts. Whether or not that means a trip across the channel to source exactly what you are after, I don't know. Good luck finding your ideal van.
  18. My mind is pure boggling here - it seems the possible combinations are endless!
  19. Ooh, steady on now, can't be getting too ambitious, can we!
  20. I declare, my life will not be complete until I see a Discovery being towed by a Discovery. I've set that as one of my life goals.
  21. Arriving at our fully serviced pitch on Friday afternoon, when setting up I lifted the flap on our grey waste water drain, to find... the previous occupant had emptied their toilet down there. I was greeted with a mush of paper and faeces - lovely! A quick phone call, and it was dealt with immediately, by some poor, probably minimum waged, lad from E. Europe, and we proceeded to enjoy our weekend at what was actually a very nice park, no noise at night or any other bother. But why, oh why, would you do that? There was Talk of HO getting on to the culprits - the park has an ANPR barrier so could easily bar them with that particular towcar. No doubt they'll feign ignorance though. Oh well, I imagine there may be more caravanning horrors to encounter in future years - not too many, I hope.
  22. Sorry, hope I didn't offend! I think we just like it too easy to be bothered, plus I fear that both our can and van are loaded enough as it is! There were two humongous RVs at the site we've just returned from, one was a Vacationer, size of a bus, I'd never seen anything like it! Mr. D - the driver - just looks and shakes his head, very firmly. No, just no. They look amazing inside though - I've lived in smaller bricks and mortar places.
  23. I don't understand why two people, not in the first flush of youth, with an 8 foot wide twin axle monster van, pitch up, then proceed to erect their mahoosive full size awning, so they can sit in it and watch the world, whatever the weather, for two days, then have to take it down and pack it all away again. I mean, what a faff for such a short time! How much space do two people need? If the weather is nice, why not just sit outside? Or if not, just sit in the van? I suppose it's horses for courses, it takes all sorts, and what suits one doesn't suit another!
  24. 2 nights, Lomond Woods Holiday Park near Balloch, our total 30 nights, forum total 236.
  25. 2019 Avante 574 bought new last September, very happy so far, only warranty work done was on the squealy Alko brakes, which is dealt with now and isn't Elddis any way. Oh, and a slightly loose hook which dealer sorted quickly enough. Been away in all weather, sun, rain, freezing and always warm and dry. We love the lay out which lets us shut off daughter's bedroom from living area with two solid doors for privacy either end. Also being able to lock only the washroom with toilet and sink so that someone is using the toilet, others can walk through from bedroom to living area and vice versa. Also someone can use the shower while someone else uses the toilet if need be. For that we had to put frosted film on the shower door, but that was simple enough. So it's easy to partially or completely block off the bathroom depending on need. No need to lock up to three doors to the whole bathroom before you can use the loo like in some vans, nor any need to walk through someone's bedroom to do so since the bathroom is central. Kitchen is great with big deep sink for washing up and the standard Thetford mk 3 cooker with the hotplate option on the hob which I like. Good sized pan locker beneath. Plenty of space in cupboards and drawers for our needs, ditto fridge which has a bigger freezer compartment than in some statics we've stayed in. Our front sofa bed is a bit cosy but that's just because this was the biggest 4 berth van with midships bathroom we could fit on our drive, so obviously not a fault. The radio with USB (which we have adapted for Bluetooth very easily and inexpensively) has superb sound, as the entire corner cabinets are given over to the speakers rather than having them fixed in the roof or ceiling. So yes, all good so far, our van goes in for its first service in a couple of weeks, we shall see what if anything that throws up.
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