Out in the Van – Kirkby Lonsdale, Morecombe and Blackpool

June 2019

The youngest was at a party and playing cricket so the eldest and I headed out west to Kirkby Lonsdale. There is a rugby club there I wanted to check out that offer camping and we headed the sixty or so miles cross country to see what the score was.

Well we were indeed most surprised. The site was itself fairly standard fair but my god the views, walks and pubs were magnificent…

Look…see..All of that was within a few minutes of the site and the river view is one described by the artist Turner as one of the most beautiful in England (and therefore the world).

That was mostly Saturday, we wandered, went to the pub for tea instead of cooking, and sat around in the sun which was out for the first time in weeks.

Sunday Morning we packed up and headed to Morecombe to start a leisurely drive home. Alas I chose to take the scenic route and I lost both wing mirrors of the SpiderVan on a particularly narrow with a particularly carelss oncoming driver. Fortunately it was just the casings that broke so pretty cheap to replace. Scary as hell though when we hit his vehicle and a telephone pole at the same time. Or did he hit us? More his fault tbh – he was driving the sort of vehicle only driven by men with small cocks.

Some gaffer tape fixed her right up though. ††

Morecombe has a certain melancholy and sadness about it, but worth a wander about and I think it’s somewhere I would like to return to in winter as I do love a bleak run down seaside town.

Anyway after that we figured next up Blackpool for a spot of lunch before heading home. Ive been to blackpool once before, at night, and the famous illuminations were kinda cool and there were a lot of folk enjoying it and it had a fun if somewhat past its best vibe.

Foolishly this time I went in the day time.

What a shit hole. If it was a man it would be a once fun and charismatic ex who is now long past his best and who sits in his favourite chair with his gut spilling onto his lap, his hand in his pants caressing his unwashed penis and who longingly reminisces about the time he fingered Stacey Cooper at your cousins house party.

Needless to say we just kept driving and headed to a services to grab a Subway instead before heading home.

So all in all a lovely day and a half away and I will definitely be heading back to Kirkby Lonsdale and Morecombe…

Out in the Van – Vale of Pickering and Thornton le Dale

June 2019

Took the van out to the Vale of Pickering this weekend and met up with the extended family. It was only for a couple of nights but probably the first time we have properly set everything up including the all importing bunting and quaint lighting.

First night we just had a barbeque and a few gins which was all rather civilised and the next day it was out to Thornton Le Dale for a walk out into the countryside and to let the kids thrash around in a river for a while.

The van continues to delight and really getting used to living in it now and a second crack at the inflatable awning proved to be pretty easy.

Mrs Afterwards family are from Pickering so it’s a place we know well but it was our first trip to Thornton le Dale and as you can see from the pictures it is as quaint as hell…

Anyway I know you prefer the pictures so here you go…

Wtf

The end is nigh!

I’m away in the van out Flanborough way for a few days with the boys and within 5 minutes of arriving the sky turns into something I imagined would surely herald the end of the world.

I got the tent out that fixes to the van but hastily packed it away as there was no chance of getting it up before the storm arrived.

More to follow but just lying awake rather early due to my snoring, flatulent children and my most urgent bladder…

Next time…less beans…

Day Trip to Whitby

Off again to the Yorkshire seaside.

You can read all about where this lark started here and our first night here. Then there was a trip to scarbrough and now it’s Whitby’s turn…


Whilst I love Scarbrough I simply adore Whitby. The Drive took us out over the North Yorkshire moors and with 2 hours we were parked up next to the harbour.

Whitby has no shortage of history and gave us captain Cook, Dracula and two of the ships that set out to settle in Australia in 1788. Then there is the Abbey (which alas was closed ) which is just truly inspirational.

I really don’t need to go on about the place just look at the photographs…

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Day Trip to Scarbrough

Off to the Yorkshire seaside.

You can read all about where this lark started here and our first night here.


The kids were off school this week and unusually Mrs Afterwards and I were off at the same time so we dicided to take the van for a run over to Scarbrough. The weather was unseasonably pleasant and I fancied giving her a good long run out. The van that is, not Mrs Afterwards.

There was no real need to pack anythign so we just coralled the kids into it, stopped at Starbucks for coffee and off we set. I was in such a rush to see what mileage I could get that I neglected to plug in the Sat Nav and in a most manly fashion told myself that I have been plenty of times and I would know when to turn off.

It wasn’t until we neared Thirsk that I realised that I am not to be trusted with such things and I had missed the turn to York many miles before. it did however turn out rather well because the Thirsk to Scarbrough road is a pretty detour indeed and if anything I felt emboldened to neglect the sat nav more often in an attempt to avoid the beaten track and all that.

Well that’s what I told myself because real men don’t need maps right ?

Anyway, the outskirts of the idyllic North Yorkshire Moors awaited and we enjoyed the sights of Kirbymoorside, Pickering and a host of other picture postcard locations as we made our way to the seaside.

Most of you will never have been to Scarbrough, but those who have will knwo it is a quite quintiessential English Seaside town. I spent many a holiday there when I was growing up and still love it to this day.

Now when I go I like to do all the same things I have done every other time I have been there. There are whelks and a walk from the north to the south bay and back, admirign the 1000 year old castle, penny slots, fish and chips, the occasional waffle, a mooch around the shops and a wander across the beach.

I know I could do something else but I find the familiarity quite comforting and am quite happy just being a regular boring old tourist.

Highlight of the day though was pulling over onto the verge on the way home and putting on the kettle and making coffee and simply watching the sun set. yes I know I sould like an old person, and yes I realise it sounds rather twee but it made me smile rather a lot.

Oh and the mileage? It was particularly economical and whilst I couldn’t quite work out what I was getting to the gallon (because I have no ide what a bloody gallon is ) I knew it was good which was a real bonus.

Happy Yorkshire Day!

A place of never ending happiness where you can always see the sun…

I don’t really write about stuff like this.  I’m no travel blogger, I’m not very good at photography but I am a proud Yorkshireman.

I will not though make this about Yorkshire pudding, flat caps or whippets.  Indeed, I will also avoid all and any references to Geoffrey Boycott, Sean Bean or the Yorkshire ripper.

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Instead I will simply share a few photographs of the Piece Hall in Halifax which reopened this morning after 3 years or so or renovations.

As you can see from the photo below, it has a really big door which is ideal for ingress and exit.  Useful.

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Above you can see smiling Yorkshire people who I can assure you will do their best not to tell you why Yorkshire is better that wherever you are from.

 

Dating from 1779, when it was built as a Cloth Hall for the trading of ‘pieces’ of cloth (a 30 yard length of woven woollen fabric produced on a handloom),

The Piece Hall was the most Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah blah  – who cares really…It is just pretty cool and a great place to waste a few hours.

 

Below you can see some of the many places to sit, useful if you are tired from standing or walking, or just like sitting.

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As glorious as it is mostly I just like to go there and have an ice cream with the kids and watch people go by.  More restaurants, cafe’s and bars have been added now so even more reason for me to visit.

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In the photograph above you can see people doing stuff.  As people do.  I think that man is looking for a toilet, of which the Piece Hall has many.

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The piece hall has fabulous accessibility, with ramps as far as they eye can see and loads of lifts.  Perfect for people with mobility challenges as well as lazy folk who do not like taking the stairs, of which the Piece Hall also has many.

So if you’re in the Yorkshire area, and looking for something a bit different then it certainly is well worth a look, even if only to have tea and cake or perhaps some lunch or to get hammered in the gin bar and tell your wife what you really think of her mother.

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See why I stick to fiction.

If you found that dull but prefer to read about things I would surely never eat then take a look here.

Michael