Keef & Anne's Travel Blog

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By keef and annie hellinger, Jan 16 2015 10:25AM

Not The Motorhome trip No4 : December 11th 2014 – January 12th 2015

NOTTS->SINGAPORE->NOTTS c 14,000 miles

Didn’t take the motor home as the drive to Singapore is either via the top of Russia or thru the middle east countries of Iraq & Iran , neither of which to be honest Annie nor I are keen to do although I’m sure the motorhome would make it.

33 days spent visiting family, our son and his wife and new granddaughter , Charlie #bestlookingirlinsingapore for Xmas and New Year. We had a lovely time and enjoyed every moment of it. Slightly cooler around Xmas and New Year as opposed to when we went last time April/ May although as Singapore is on the Equator it is never cool and the humidity is the sapper of one’s energy.

Left on a 13.5 hour night flight from Heathrow via Singapore airlines, cattle class but managed 3 movies and possibly 2 hours tops sleep oh and the odd sling!. Took a few days for us both to get over the jet lag but seeing the family “Singapore branch” certainly helps

Take a look at some of the pictures and videos to get a feel, but highlights are Charlie, Pensioner swimming at Geylang, experience all the diverse food available (including Malay, Indonesian, Indian, Chinese, Chicken Rice, Bak Kut Teh, Pork escalope, Fish cheeks, Tapas, Waggu beef, Donkey skin, Cows intestines, Green frog HELP did I really eat those last 3 ;) ), Singapore Flyer, Da Vinci Exhibition at Artscience museum, seeing Doug & Phoenix, Night Safari, Yuzu, Mustafa’s emporium and samosa’s, MRT, Orchard Road, Hard Rock café, Muddy Murphies, wine from China, Singaporean building cleaning and painting, Queues at Postoffices, DJ’s fruit and veg, Malay barber, Stadium, Serangoon, BBQ at Sims ville, old chop houses, Clarke Quay walk, Vida vino & Japanese BBQ restuarants, Chimjes, Slings in Raffles, peanuts on floor, Fair Trade (Price) Xtra, Cold storage, rip off in Raffles place, Hobbit3 with subtitles, candy crush players, air con….and Charlie!

Left 6.30am by comfort taxis to Changi and 15hr flight on the way back, watched 4 movies the best of which was “what we did on our hols” with the Big Yin & Dr Who! Had more slings and ½ hour max kip. Wet,wet,wet all the way back in hire car and crashed out about 9.30pm after 24hrs+ travelling, tired but happy.

Looking forward to the next trip in 2015, which will be in the motorhome!

Anyone ever taken a motorhome to South East Asia? If so let us know here on the blog, we would love to know. Leave a comment on this blog and we will get back to you, regards Keef & Annie


1) If you want to see our previous trip to Singapore click HERE

2) The Index shows ALL blogs already published or you can find Blogs about a specific subject by clicking on a word in the soon to be available KEYWORDS page, thanks, motorhome-travels.

3) Other family fun can be found here

303 pictures in the SLIDESHOW , plus you can see video of Charlie and our other family fun, including the museum etc

Note since this family time spanned 2014/2015 the slideshow and video are repeated under both years

To see the latest (2021) MRT map click HERE

By keef and annie hellinger, Oct 18 2014 05:58PM

It Pidley-ed down again – Deja Vu

Stroud Hill Park,Pidley, Cambs

Motorhome trip No20 : October 11th – 12th 2014


Definitely Déjà vu, same weekend as last year, same torrential downpour only this time we were out for a walk in it, no coats only small brollies. We ended up like wicks, the water slowly rising up thru our clothing to our necks. Tried drying stuff out in the van with the fire on. Didn’t really work sadly

We have now been here 3 times with our dear friends Pete & Joy, once in tents once in the motor homes. We travelled early on Saturday morning and arrived at the site as Keef was back at work again and P&J couldn’t travel until Saturday. We more or less arrived at the same time. The site was packed as a caravan rally was on for the weekend.

Had a lovely cheese, bikkies and wine lunch then headed out for a walk to Somersham, didn’t get very far because of the downpour.

Had our evening meal in the restaurant downstairs pea and mint soup, rack of lamb and salted caramel torte all washed down with a nice prosecco. Annie had the wild mushroom tagliatelle, Pete game pie and Joy plaice.

It was indeed a bit of a foodies weekend interspersed with lovely conversation a bit of reading TV fixing (failed) and calor gas bottle checking. Breakfast was croissant with fresh coffee and blueberry preserve. Lunch mostly trad roast beefs with the biggest Yorkshires I have seen for quite a while.

The site is nice and quiet good facilities and the restaurant and bar on site make it a must hence we have been back 3 times now!

Then after our goodbyes it was off about 2.30 pm and back home, not too bad at just over 1 ½ hours.

All in all a fab relaxing weekend again! Looking forward to the next time we are there.

20 pictures in the SLIDESHOW

If you wish to look at our complete set of UK Campsite stays click HERE, thanks

Sunday lunch in the barn restaurant, yummy
Sunday lunch in the barn restaurant, yummy

By keef and annie hellinger, Sep 29 2014 06:12PM

Motorhome trip No19 : September 23rd – September 28th 2014


George 3rd may have said “Bugger Bognor” but we say we LOVE the place!

Took the “wendy house” away for 6 days down on the south coast visiting family, friends, our old haunts and some nice restaurants and pubs en route. The weather was really good even got a bit of a tan.

We stayed at Chichester Lakeside view holiday park in the tourer area via our ACSI membership . Amazing value at €12 per day. It has nice lakes, an outside pool , bar with free wifi, shop and café and perfectly adequate facilities. They are not the newest but you get what you pay for. The only downside is the A27 noise and the fact that they put the height barrier to the field on at 5pm every day even though you have paid £10 deposit for the key fob to get in the front entrance. Still no real complaints the weather was mostly good!

Whilst here we visited Chichester (Chi), East & West Whittering, Bracklesham Bay,Bognor Regis where we met 39 years ago, Felpham, Middleton on Sea, Elmer, Climping, Littlehampton (main & west beach), our dear friends Mike and Alison in Selsey, Pagham, Birdham, Chi Marina & Bosham. See the pix!

We then drove onto Brighton via Worthing and stayed at the Brighton Caravan club site at Whitehawk in the east of the city. We took the bus into town to the Old Steine and did the usual touristy things. Pavilion, Lanes, Pier, Dome, Beach, Promenade as well as a lovely meal at our Neice Laura’s restaurant – Cocktails & Burgers (Giraffe) in North rd. Mixed weather but hot and humid!

Saturday we drove to Lewes and stayed there all day, a really interesting historic town, architecture, quirky markets, steep streets, lovely gardens, vistas, Anne of Cleeves house, fish & chip dinner in high street pub, fab Harveys ales and 6 free Vinyl LPs from local record shop…. Result!

Sunday we visited Laura, Ben and Obi (lovely dog) and had breakfast at Jamie Olivers before driving back home, all in all a fab week away, brought back many wonderful memories and created a few more!

Anyone else have any Motorhome / RV experiences in Sussex UK they want to share? If so leave a comment on this blog and we will get back to you, regards Keef & Annie

218 Photos available in the SLIDESHOW

If you wish to look at our complete set of UK Campsite stays click HERE, thanks

Motorhome outside Rodean School, Rottingdean
Motorhome outside Rodean School, Rottingdean

By keef and annie hellinger, Sep 19 2014 05:50PM

This guide shows you how to fit one to a specific motorhome but in our humble opinion the principle is the same which ever home you fit it to.

Summary of steps

1. It’s a sensible precaution to test that the components are all functioning correctly before starting to install them. A fully charged 12V battery or suitable power supply will be required. Gentle flexing of the cable and joints should ensure that there are no breaks or snags.

2. Mark out the position of the camera bracket in the centre of reverse slope under the high-mounted stop lamp. Auto-Sleepers fit a horizontal metal reinforcement behind the inner skin of the Styrofoam panel and the hole should be above this. On this vehicle the reinforcement ended 40mm above the cupboard base, but this should be confirmed with a stud detector. Inside the rear cupboard, drill a 30mm diameter access hole through the inner insulation just above the camera bracket location.

3. Drill two 6mm diameter holes for the screw fixings, coat the camera bracket with mastic and temporarily secure with 6mm screws and nuts. Use large washers on the inner surface of the GRP panel. Use a ¼-inch M10 socket and universal drive to hold the nut. Tape the socket and any extension together to avoid dropping into the void. When the mastic has set, remove screws, coat the holes and washers with additional mastic and reassemble. This process gives a better seal because it allows the bracket to be secured before the mastic has set and then holds it while it sets.

4. Drill two 8mm diameter cable holes below the bracket. Fit the sleeve grommets to the cables, coat the holes and grommets with mastic and feed through the GRP panel and inner insulation. Wipe off excess mastic and arrange a loop in the cables to shed water. It may be easier to fit the sleeve grommets if they are split lengthwise and rejoined with superglue.

5. Remove left-side rear light and locate the harness feed hole. Drill a 19mm hole in left side of rear cupboard wall at level of 30mm hole.

6. Locate the left-rear light harness under the rear floor, remove the mastic from the feed hole through the floor and ensure that the hole is large enough to pass the cable plugs.?To avoid damaging the lighting harness it may be more convenient to cut it and pull it through the rear lamp feed hole. It can be rejoined later.

7. Moving to the front of the vehicle, remove the left fusebox cover and glovebox. To do this you need to remove the pocket above the fusebox to reveal a hidden fixing for the glovebox panel.

8. Inside the cab, remove the passenger wheelarch and side step trims and locate the large harness entry hole giving?access to the left side-member.

9. Feed the cable horizontally across the rear wall void from the 30mm hole to the 19mm hole made in step 5. Then vertically down to the rear light cable hole, through the floor, under the floor following the route of the rear light harness to the large grommet in the rear outer of the left side-member. Go along the interior of the left side-member, out the step harness entry hole, up the left wheelarch and into left fusebox area securing with tie wraps

10. The rear light hole and the 19mm hole are used as access holes and the cable is only temporarily looped through them. Electrician’s cable feed rods are strongly recommended for this process, though stiff wire may make a suitable alternative. Secure the cable to the access hole plugs with cable ties, feed the cable into the void and fit the plugs. These are purely precautionary measures in case cable recovery is required in the future.

11. Attach the mirror monitor to the existing mirror and route its cable tail to the left fusebox area via the headlining and left A-pillar trim. Secure the monitor control box to a blank area of the fusebox. Locate suitable feeds for the cameras and monitor.

12. Auto-Sleepers taps into the cigarette lighter feed from the fusebox for the rear step warning buzzer and this makes a suitable ignition-controlled source for the permanent camera. Connect with an inline fuse of 3-5A. A multi-terminal plug for the left rear light harness is located at the base of the A-pillar and the lead to the reversing light can be identified by cable colours and confirmed using a voltmeter. Connect the monitor AV2 switch wire to this lead. Fit the earth return to a suitable point. Connect all leads and loop any excess cable neatly in the left fusebox area.

13. Reconnect the rear light harness, if cut, and seal in a weatherproof junction box if external. Fill the floor access hole with a suitable non-setting mastic.

14. Tape the cable to the rear light harness and refit the rear light unit. Test that the system operates satisfactorily and adjust the camera angles using the adjustable brackets on the sides. When happy with the view, bolt the unit to its final position.

Rear camera fitted to a  2006 Marquis Lancashire (Auto-Sleeper Nuevo) coach
Rear camera fitted to a 2006 Marquis Lancashire (Auto-Sleeper Nuevo) coach

There are some other really useful and interesting articles that may help on other pages of the MMM blog , why not click HERE to take a look i.e water ingress, buying a new van etc etc

By keef and annie hellinger, Sep 14 2014 12:03AM

Not The Motorhome trip No3 : September 5th – September 12th 2014


Didn’t take the motor home this time as stayed at wonderful Hesleyside Hall cottages on the extensive grounds of the Charlton family whose main hall approach and gardens were designed by Lancelot “Capability” Brown who was born at Kirkharle nearby. Went with Craig, Leanne, Bill & Lady dog and had the most wonderful time, weather so much better than we hoped for, sunny and warm often!

Visited Hadrians Wall, Kielder Water, Alnwick (+ the fabulous Barter Books – even got an old Wham & John Lennon Vinyl LP),Low Newton by Sea, Bamburgh Castle, Hareshaw Linn waterfall walk at Bellingham, Carriages restaurant, Corbridge,Hexham,Kirkhale courtyard , church and lake and can 5* recommend the Cheviot Hotel in Bellingham for food and ales.

Craig & Leanne cycled all 27 miles around Kielder, a fabulous achievement, well proud of them both!.

Will definitely bring the campervan back to this area, a Camping & Caravan site is just outside Bellingham and each year at this time the BaaFest is on for a whole weekend, live music, food and ales. Its just so beautiful , we know the coastal areas well but not really the Northumbrian forest area.

Anyone else have any Motorhome / RV experiences Bellingham and / or Northumberland they want to share? If so leave a comment on this blog and we will get back to you, regards Keef & Annie


1) If you want to see our previous family holidays in a cottage click KESWICK for the 1st and CERIDIGION for the 2nd.

2)The Index shows ALL blogs already published or you can find Blogs about a specific subject by clicking on a word in the soon to be available KEYWORDS page, thanks, motorhome-travels.

153 Photos available in the SLIDESHOW

Annie at the Minotaur Maze Kielder Castle
Annie at the Minotaur Maze Kielder Castle