Having visited Barnard Castle camping & caravanning club site which is not far from Darlington where we had spent a few days. They have a fish and chip van that visits there twice a week and I have to say is worth visiting the site just for that as they do the very best in fish and chips I’ve had anywhere “ever”. As well as that the area is great for walking and the girls really loved it there.
Having paid a quick visit to the motorhome service point we began the trek south taking a brief detour out towards Hull to visit Wandahome’s accessories superstore. Alas we were somewhat disappointed as it wasn’t so much the superstore as a … well, shop I suppose and failed to have all the lovely goodies we were planning on purchasing from them.
So disappointed we continued our journey south towards Copthorne in West Sussex which according to the satnav was about a five hour drive. So as usual I settled in for the drive. The plan was to stop off at some point midway to do a wild camp overnight.
Things didn’t really go to plan as one of the things I find with the bus, oh yes by the way finally got a nickname for our motorhome, simply calling it “the bus”. Anyway as I was saying things didn’t go quite to plan to find it incredibly easy to drive the bus and we just ate up the miles and the hours just got shot by unbelievably quickly and before we
knew it we had reach the M25 and a mere 60 miles from our destination which we were not supposed to be at until the following day. So Ann started making phone calls and rearranging our plans for a day forward which included picking up stuff for my son to drop off to him his digs at university. We also rang the Prince Albert Pub and let the landlord know we were coming and to put some dinner up for us. Of course being a mighty fine chap and as we stop off there every time we pass, he did so.
This meant the girls spent the entire day in the bus bar a couple of quick stops just have a wee and for me to fuel up with coffee and they were both immaculately behaved and didn’t complain once. So having arrived at the albert, got parked up, nipped off to eat the meal put aside for us I then treated the girls to an extra long walk as they thoroughly deserved it before returning to the pub for a few drinks which I thought I thoroughly deserved.
From there we travelled down to Bournemouth to collect my eldest son and deliver his stuff before heading to Southsea Leisure Park for a week. Whilst its location appears to be great, right on the sea front with easy access on to the beach it was a major let down. The site was grim, very tired and unkept and the beach, well, not great. Also a warning, or maybe a tip, there is a nudist section very close by! I am not sure its an official one as the only mention of it is on the park map you get and there are none of the usual warning signs. I did wander along to it whilst walking the girls and indeed it is actively used as a nudist beach. Yeah I know but it had to be done, more than once just to be sure.
There is a regular bus service from close to the site that takes you to Portsmouth Historic Dock yard and I can very highly recommend it for a good day out. The all attraction pass there is excellent value and includes free water bus over the bay to the two attractions they have over there.
Whilst we were at Southsea we took the bus in to Dolphin Motorhomes in Southampton to have the engine and habitation service and the MOT done. I am pleased to say all passed with flying colours. However they did note that the rear of the vehicle was very close to the bump stops and was warned we may be overweight on the rear axle. When we got back to the site I proceeded to move everything around so that the heavier items were moved forward and also took this as a chance to throw out anything that has not been used since we moved in. Its now looking much better on the back end.