The Adventure Continues – Week 2 Minehead to Crawley

England is still in partial lockdown, but campsites are open (with social distancing) and we’ve continued our journey.

We walked through the town in Minehead and along the promenade to the harbour, passing the marker for the start (or end) of the Southwest Coast Path. When we first set out last year my (Sarah) sister, loaned me a book – The Salt Path by Raynor Winn, it is the memoirs of a couple who set out to walk the Southwest Coast Path, having been made homeless. We hadn’t originally set out to stay in Minehead, but we are so glad we did.

The beach at Minehead is not dog friendly (in the summer), so despite a quick set onto the sand with Reg, we thought we should go somewhere he was welcome and headed up the coast to Burnham-on-Sea, where the campsite is close to the sea at Berrow. It’s a long sandy, dog friendly beach, and Reg was able to run on it (once we’d navigated the sand dunes). He also had his first venture into the sea, but was more amused with trying to eat the seaweed and drinking the sea water!

After a couple of days, we headed up to Bristol. Not too sure what to expect, we arrived at the campsite and were in awe! The campsite backs onto the Floating Harbour at Baltic Wharf and a gate at the rear, allows you to access straight onto the harbourside walk. There were views up towards the Suspension Bridge and towards the S.S. Great Britain (closed at the moment but still iconic).

We walked up the hill to the Cabot Tower (again closed) and along the harbourside. We discovered the Banksy Mural of the Girl with the Earring (complete with face mask) and several other sculptures and statues – including Samuel Plimsoll – the man responsible for the Plimsoll Line on ships, indicating the maximum load for a ship, and John Cabot (an Italian who discovered Newfoundland in 1497, with the backing of the mayor of Bristol and King Henry VII).

The following day after a morning walk around the harbour, we walked up to the Clifton Suspension Bridge, through the Leigh Woods National Nature Reserve and then over the Bridge (take care if you suffer from vertigo – especially at the moment with social distancing in place)! Before walking back down through the Hotwells district of the city.

We headed off again on Saturday to Winchester and the Caravan and Motorhome Club Site at Morn Hill. The campsite is just too far to walk to the city in the rain, but lovely grass pitches and a big-ish dog walk. The A303 as usual was very busy but the views over Stonehenge can’t be faulted.

Sunday, saw us head back to Crawley. We have a couple of appointments we need to attend to, these had been put on hold during Lockdown and a week into our trip, they started to be rebooked, it was too good an opportunity to not return for – especially as one was for the Dentist we had been waiting for since the hospital trip in Spain in December.

As always, thank you for reading, hopefully you and your families are safe and well. Join us next week to see where we get to!

Lockdown Week 16 / The Adventure Continues Week 1: Chichester to Minehead

Reg’s first countryside walk

Monday morning and we woke up to the relative peace of a campsite, rather than the hustle and bustle of town life. Taking Reg for a walk in a place he’s never been before (the countryside – rather than the road) was entertaining – he saw rabbits for the first time and also cat’s eyes in the road – which he wanted to chew!

We had planned to cycle to the Marina in Chichester, to catch up with my (Sarah’s) mum, before we disappeared again! We checked the route and strapped Reg into his trailer and set off. One hairy moment when he slipped his straps (Houdini strikes again) and ran along the side of the trailer along the busy road. A quick stop to remedy the situation and attach another lead to the trailer and harness and hopefully he’ll be safe in the future.

We arrived at the Marina, after having to navigate a very difficult kissing gate – it’s designed for wheelchairs, but to get a bike trailer through you have to dismantle the trailer and go through individually! Mum was glad to see us and we spent a lovely afternoon, socially distancing on her boat. We said our goodbyes and set off back to the campsite (and Reg’s friends).

Tuesday morning, after a quick trip to the Farm Shop opposite https://www.southbournefarmshop.co.uk/ and stocking up with some lovely food, we headed off to the New Forest and the Caravan Club Site in Bransgore. The facilities are open on Caravan Club sites, with social distancing measures in place (not that everyone understands how it works!). We had a nice grass pitch and managed to wander to the Airfield Memorial, before the weather changed.

We headed off after a couple of days (the weather was due to brighten up and campsites were getting booked up) to Exmoor House Caravan Site, in Dulverton. Dulverton is such a lovely town, with a traditional butchers and greengrocers. We had a wander around and the next day, we headed into the town for fish and chips – which we’d both been craving, whilst in lockdown and it didn’t disappoint.

Reg went for a swim in the river next to the site – he decided he wanted to jump in and off he went, luckily he was on a lead as the current was very strong. He did have a moment when he got back on the shore trying to dry himself!

From here we set off to Minehead. It’s only a short drive but we fancied a couple of days by the sea. We had a short walk to the beach and despite dogs not being allowed on the beach, we couldn’t resist – Reg has never been to the beach before and the sand was too inviting to him; he was trying to play with it on the prom! Our walk took us past Butlins, which is still not open and looked a bit sad. The walk back in the heat was a bit too much for Reg and he had to be carried part of the way.

We got the barbecue out in the evening and had lovely steaks, from the butcher in Dulverton,

We’re now planning our trip for the next week – we’re heading back towards home as lockdown easing has allowed the dentist to open and Ric can have the treatment we’ve been waiting for since Spain and December!

As always, thank you for reading, we’ll update you with the rest of our adventure soon #theadventurecontinues. Stay safe…

Lockdown Week 15: Light at the end of the Tunnel

Our Lockdown Hideaway – we are thankful to our neighbours for putting up with us, but we need to move on!

Boris has said that campsites can reopen in England on 4th July. We’ve spent the week, preparing. We started to declutter all the extra stuff, we’ve accumulated in the last 15 weeks. Unfortunately, the weather changed and we weren’t able to completely empty the garage, but we have managed to put another seven kilos of clothes in the loft!

We said our goodbyes to family and the friends we’ve made in our lockdown parking space and headed off to a Camping and Caravanning Site in Chichester.

It felt good but strange to be back on the road, almost like we were expecting to be asked, what are we doing / where are we going?

Arriving at the campsite was amazing, we were allocated a pitch and although, no facilities were open, except for waste disposal and washing up, but we were aware of this before we booked and Nortia has an amazing shower and bathroom set up, so this wouldn’t be an issue. We waited until we arrived to fill up with water, just as there was less weight that way, to travel with.

People on site, were all friendly and looked like we felt, so thankful to be able to be out and about. The knowledge that we don’t have to go home at the end of the day, is such a relief. When we arrived, the sun was shining and although a little windy, sitting outside for the evening, brought back lots of happy memories. We hope that Reg will enjoy it too.

Reg, has only ever spent four days on a pitch before, way back when he was eight weeks old, so to be harnessed and tethered was a little strange to him, He also, hasn’t really been on a drive ( we had two lockdown drives, weeks apart. He is used to sleeping in the motorhome, but not the outside experience.

Reg did make some friends during our stay, there were three little girls next door and he loved being made a fuss of by the youngest two.

Tomorrow, we are continuing our adventure. Thank you for reading and we look forward to sharing our adventure with you for next week. Find out where we go and what we do, next!