More Mulled Wine and Markets…


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Part Two of our Cheltenham and Oxford festive outing…

Wednesday 10th December

Thankfully the wild weather that was affecting northern England and Scotland didn’t extend as far south as Gloucestershire and after a bit of a late start we were packed up and ready to say goodbye to Briarfields and set off for Oxford. We called in reception to drop off our electronic tag that operated the security barriers and waved goodbye to our neighbour who was leaving in his campervan after an overnight stay. The Sat-Nav gave a distance of about 37 miles and a time of one hour twenty minutes to complete the journey. We pulled off the site just before eleven o’clock and headed out into the late morning traffic enroute for Oxford Camping & Caravan Club site. Continue reading

Mulled Wine And Markets…


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One of the great things about owning a caravan or motorhome is that you can go everywhere like a local, you don’t have to be a day trip visitor. In the past we have visited Christmas markets at Lincoln, Erddig and Chirk. This time we wanted to see if we could fit two Christmas Markets in one break. Continue reading

Blackpool Illuminations 2014 – DONE!…


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Monday 27th October was the start of our next trip, our annual ‘cycle Blackpool Illuminations. Well I say annual, it was actually the third time we have done this. We again opted for a return visit to one of Tranquil Touring Parks member’s sites, the excellent Manor House Caravan Park at Marton Moss run by Jeremy and Sharon Haworth. Continue reading

Excellent News from Lodge Farm Leisure…


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obj7geo7pg8p19If you around the Nottingham, Mansfield or Grantham area Lodge Farm Leisure are now fully equipped to refill you Safefill, Gas-It or Gaslow systems having recently installed their own LPG refilling equipment. Chris and the guys have probably beaten all the other caravan servicing and even caravan dealers by being the first to install this equipment. With the increasing cost of conventional bottle exchange and the recent recall by one supplier of some of their cylinders it makes sense for caravanners and motor homes to move over to a refillable system. Currently their price for LPG is 65 pence per litre and they are aiming to be 5p per litre cheaper than other stations in the area, which is great news!

We have been using Safefill since we started caravanning and have easily covered the cost of the cylinder. With more and more caravans and motor homes now coming equipped with state of the art solar panels, moving over to a refillable gas system makes the task of planning ‘off grid’ stops so much easier as you can always start your trip with a full tank of gas and top up if required!

I’m sure in the coming months other caravan service centres and dealers will try to play catch up with Lodge Farm Leisure… in the meantime if you are in the area, you now know where to get a fill up.

Directions to Lodge Farm Leisure are on their website.

Review of the Tranquil Touring Parks App…


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A couple of days ago Tranquil Touring Parks released an app (press release) for the iPhone and Android platforms. I’ve been playing about with the App on my iPhone 5 for a couple of days and here’s a quick review.

The app downloaded and installed without any problems. On launching you are greeted with the home screen:


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“Why do my sidelights flash when I indicate?”…


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That is one of the most common questions that I am asked about road light problems with caravan’s and trailers. Others are::

“Why do my side lights come on when I brake?”

“When I turn my side lights on why do the indicators glow dimly?”

“When I put my side lights on why do my reversing lights come on?”

“When I brake why do all my rear lights come on?”

The answer is fairly simple, and a lot of people will tell you “It’s an earth fault” So often said simply because they have heard someone else say it but really they don’t understand how it can be an earth fault. Trying to find a fault even if you know what it is can be frustrating if you don’t know a bit of theory behind it, but I’ll try to give you an insight into what’s going on. Lets have a look at a basic wiring diagram for the caravan or trailer road lights and their connections.

Continue reading

All Packed Up…


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One thing we are asked from time to time, especially by people new to caravanning is how we pack. If you put everything in the caravan that you wanted to take for a trip, it would make life so much easier… but will probably go over the caravan’s weight limit.

It will take a while to find your own routine for packing but here’s how we do it to make life simple and easy, or so we think.

Like a lot of people we keep out caravan in storage, so the chance to ‘pre load’ with everything we need for a trip one or two days before setting off is a bit limited. Sue has a couple of large bags.. I think they are laundry bags bought from a store for a couple of pounds, that she packs all the clothes in, so when we go to pick up the caravan, it’s a simple matter of unloading the two bags into relevant cupboards and anything for the wardrobe is hung up before it gets chance to crease up and it doesn’t take that long to do.

Continue reading

Another fault finding guide…


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One of the questions that I’m asked from time to time is about the 12 volt circuit from the tow car to the caravan that powers the fridge, is how to find any problems that could be the cause of the fridge not working at its normal capacity. There are a few checks that can be done on the fridge first before having to start to look for other reasons why the fridge is not functioning to full capacity when towing.

I have written hopefully a simple guide to checking the circuit tracing the voltage drops and locating where the problem could lie. It will take some time and a basic understanding of how to use a multi-meter is required but it should either help you find the problem(s) or confirm that there is nothing wrong with the wiring and you can stat to look for other possible issues.

It’s in the “Help Guides” section and called “Caravan Fridge Circuit – Tracing A Fault

I hope you find it helpful.

Getting into the festive spirit…


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What!… It’s only August! 

One of the great things you can do in the run up to Christmas to get you into the swing of things is stay a couple of nights at a site that’s within striking distance of one of the many Christmas Markets held all over the country (and Europe for that matter) Staying local also allows you to sample some of the mulled wine and cider that’s on offer.

Last year we had booked to visit Cheltenham’s famous Christmas Market, but unfortunately due to the builders not removing scaffolding from around the house in time we had to cancel. However to make up for it we decided to do two markets this year! We have booked into Briarfields an independent site just outside Cheltenham with a good bus service right into the centre of the town. From Briarfields we then head back north to Oxford to the Camping & Caravan Club’s site for a few days so we can ‘do’ Oxford’s Christmas Market too!

christmas-marketsIf you fancy the idea of visiting one of the UK’s many Christmas Markets we use this handy website that lists all the dates and opening times… and currently they list over 150 markets in the UK and over 250 markets all over Europe.

If you have never caravanned  ‘out of season’ don’t worry. Caravan’s are great in winter… when it’s nice and toasty inside with some mulled wine… who cares what the weather is doing!

So it may only be August, but find yourselves a Christmas Market, find a site and get booked in and even better invite some caravan or motor home friends to join you.

A very early Merry Christmas.

Simon & Sue


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