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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Thursday, 16 November 2017

A feathered passenger and something new to play with!

View from our mooring on a very wet day.
 Would you look who paid us a visit? This cheeky Robin flew in the open door of our car whilst Ian was loading the boot and proceeded to make itself at home on the passenger seat!  Had to shoo him out as we didn't have a seat-belt to fit!

After an extensive search over several weeks, traipsing around caravan, camper vans and motor home sites, looking at numerous vehicles layouts, we eventually found the perfect motor home on eBay.  

And before you all fling your hands up in horror saying you're crazy to buy on eBay, we did travel to Warrington first to see if it was suitable. At 6.9 meters long it has 6ft twin settees either side which could make up to one huge double or stay as two singles. The toilet can be closed off from the shower, a bonus as most we looked at had wet rooms and the idea of using soggy toilet paper was not an appealing thought. It has the usual fridge, freezer, microwave, oven with grill and 4 hob burners, plus a reversing camera,  swivel driver and passenger seats, awning and oodles of storage.  And what is the make I hear you ask?  2005 Autocruise Wentworth, a tad older than we would have liked but with only 29,000 miles on the clock, an absolute bargain.

On the driveway at Warrington
The arrangement was to bring her back to Langley Mill yesterday so, with the owner having to leave for work by midday, we planned to get a train from Langley Mill to Chesterfield, catch another to Manchester and finally, the Llandudno train alighting at Newton-la-Willows station. You would think this was going to be a doddle but we couldn't have foreseen the problems encountered before the journey even started. The last thing we wanted to hear whilst waiting for the 7.31am train was that it had been cancelled due to a body on the line! An hour wait for the next one and a phone call to the owner apologising that we would be arriving 11.30am instead of 10.30am as planned and with one hell of a quick hand over, we finally became the proud owners of a new mode of transport.

The natty idea of the partition holding the sink folds toward the loo closing off the shower cubical.

Had a short cruise across the basin to water up and transfer spare bedding into the van. That's FS on the right. 


Nev Wells said...

Excellent - 29,000 miles I'd guess is very low for the year. Looks very clean and 'new' inside. Happy travels - looking forward to the story unfolding.

alan baker said...

Welcome to the motorhome club, looks a nice van. Is it under 3500kgs gross weight? What you have to be careful of is not overloading otherwise if you get pulled over by highways at a check point it can be a hefty fine. Would suggest before you start loading you get it weighed,so you can work out the payload you can put on, Not like a
Boat where you can collect your logs and carry loads of tools. Trust you will have many adventures. The best magazine we've fond is MMM ( they some times offer a cheap subscription)they have a good Technical section.

Alan & Judith.

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

Hi Alan, Ian checked the weight and without putting any of our bits and bobs on board, it was 3170kgs including fridge and microwave. We want to take the generator but I still think we will be under the limit. Thanks for the magazine advice. One to look for.

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

Thanks, Nev.

Marilyn McDonald said...

It looks lovely, Irene and Ian, and I am sure you will have lots of great adventures.

Is there a motor caravan association in the UK? We joined the NZMCA and there are all sorts of benefits as well as a magazine every two months - I should send you a couple as they will have you coming back over here pronto ...

They also provide an annual magazine with maps and descriptions of all the campsites, Parkover Properties, DOC sites, dump stations etc. As you will know from your NZ and Oz adventures, these things are very good to know ...

So if there is a UK assoc that does the same thing, it's probably worth joining it.

Re the weight thing - remember that the limit also includes you and Ian (plus any passengers if you are allowed to carry them) so best you put Ian on a diet immediately!

Big hugs, M&D

PS Our motorhome should be getting very close to the wharf at Auckland right now!! Yay!

Diane and Ray said...

That's a lovely looking motor home, very clean and looks like good storage. We look forward to hearing about your new adventures
Diane and Ray

Carol said...

Your new 'home' looks very comfortable Irene and I'm sure your looking forward to enjoying all the adventures you'll both have with it. Enjoy, and we'll look forward to some of your great photos. Best wishes to you both.

Tom and Jan said...

oooh... looks nice.

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

Hello Marilyn, We have joined the Camping and Caravanning Club and the first magazine is waiting for us to collect at Christine. Hope it has everything your magazine has in it. As for weight restrictions, I've stopped Ian's beer to see if that will do the trick. Whats that you say, Ian...No, my wine is slimming didn't you know?

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

Hello Diane and Ray, First outing is in December to Milton Keynes for a very early family Christmas. No doubt I will let everyone know how we get on. Xx

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

Thank you, Carol, Xxx and thank you Tom and Jan. Xxx

Anonymous said...

Absolutely fabulous, lucky yous to find a good buy, also looking forward to joining in your new adventures on here!
Keith and Ann

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