Narrative to Europe 2014

Setting off, first stop Durham, on way to France & Spain

Lidalia Caravan Club Site, Newcastleton, Scottish Borders; 21st - 23rd July

HL 21st July

We are now back on Scottish soil!

Our drive from Southport was reasonably good though it took over 4 hours including a break for dog and human (note the hierarchy).

We stayed at Lidalia Campsite in Newcastleton in the Scottish Borders (near Hawick).

The weather remains sunny & bright!

This campsite is well worth a visit. Its an affiliated Caravan Club site and provides excellent facilities. It’s a family run site and they could not be any more friendly or helpful. There are separate male & female shower and toilet blocks, both with inclusive shower rooms - spacious and spotless. The setting is wonderful,  and the hardstanding pitches are large and well laid out. Some have water and grey waste drains.

The local butcher on the main street of Newcastleton sells the most enormous fresh eggs that tasted like we used to remember eggs tasting in ’the olden days’ - nom, nom! 

We had a fabulous dinner in the Grapes Hotel in Newcastleton from an excellent, varied menu and wine list. Excellent value for money; one we can highly recommend. 

This is definitely a place and campsite we will return to.

Our Campsite score - 90%

Willowbank Holiday & Touring Park, Southport; 14th - 21st July

MSL 14th July

Just arrived in Southport, not so far from Liverpool. Super site, massive pitch, all mod cons to hand.

Unfortunately, I broke the nose pad of my specs yesterday morning, and not wanting to trek into Bath again, opted for my sun specs, which was OK as it was sunny; planning to get it sorted here tomorrow. By the time we arrived here I had a pounding headache, so after setting up camp we headed for Vision Express in Southport

How impressed are we with this town? - extremely - the main shopping area has Victorian style canopies over the shops, so pretty. Wide streets, the hint of sea air, perfect. Specs fixed by friendly staff, who took time to point out a few highlights in the area that they thought we would find interesting. So far, so good. Weather iffy at the moment, windy with the threat of rain but brighter skies on the horizon.

Willowbank Holiday & Touring Park is an excellent campsite which we can heartily recommend. The statics are in a separate area from the touring pitches. Toilet blocks are perfect; at least the one closest to our pitch was.

Willowbank, Southport

An enormous pitch to accommodate our outfit

MSL 16th July

And so Big Adventure No 2, or the Very Long Holiday, or the Nomad Life (for the moment) is due to end next Wednesday, 23 July, when we get back to Livingston. Meantime, tomorrow we are off to find our place on a bus tour of Liverpool and ferry across the Mersey (so long as dogs are permitted). Also on the cards is a trip to Crosby, from all accounts worth a visit, and there is a dog friendly beach.

A day in Liverpool was very interesting and enjoyable. Go to Albert Docks to pick up combined tickets for the City Bus Tour and Ferry Across the Mersey. On a very hot day this was an excellent way to see the city. 

Back in Ainsdale, Southport, there was a Chinese Restaurant - Jade Gardens - where we had a fabulous meal. Another highly recommended from Margaret and I. Varied menu, efficient and friendly staff - a place we would definitely come back to.

There are plenty of great beaches in and around Southport but not all of them are dog friendly.

We found one near Formby which was life-guard protected with miles of wonderful sand; just perfect for Maya and Magan. 

We also spent a lovely afternoon at Crosby Beach where you can see the Sir Anthony Gormley’s ‘Another Place’. This consists of 100 identical bronze casts of the artist’s body set in lines across the beach and stretching down into the sea. As you gaze down you can see lines of statues gradually disappearing into the sea; more or less depending on the state of the tide. 

3 of Sir Anthony Gormley's 100 Statues at Crosby's Beach

Sir Anthony Gormley’s ‘Another Place'

One word of warning! The sand is very soggy and in areas can be very wet and soft. Wear wellington boots, not trainers nor sandals! But, we enjoyed the day.

Bath Marina and Caravan Park, Brassmill Lane, Bath, Somerset, BA1 3JT; 10th - 14th July

Rosebud Farm Touring Park, St Teath, Cornwall; 7th - 10th July

Rosebud Farm Touring Park is quite unlike any other touring campsites we've experienced. We have never before been welcomed by campsite owners with a cup of tea / coffee and a 'getting to know you chat';  like visiting new friends.


Terri and Jon took time to explain the history and philosophy of their site; their plans for developing it further and were obviously interested in hearing about our motorhome experiences. They showed us round the site and suggested a pitch that would accommodate our motorhome, car and trailer. It was a terrific pitch, with all the essentials close at hand (electricity, water, waste) that satisfied us completely. As glampers, rather than campers, that's quite something.


This is an adults only site, which we were happy about, with a very friendly attitude to dogs. There was plenty of free space on the lower part of the site where they could roam and play free, subject to adequate control by owners. Our two yorkies loved it.


The views across the hills from our pitch was breathtaking.


The toilet block was spotless and perfectly adequate even if temporary. A new, permanent block is nearing completion which will include a laundry room.


We stayed at Rosebud Farm as a stopover visit to Cornwall, on our way home from 12 weeks touring in France. It was a relaxing and peaceful stay. I can imagine this as a place and site we'd return to for a longer, more relaxing stay in the future.


The site is well situated in St Teath for Port Isaac (Doc Martin's Portwenn),  Padstow, Tintagell and Bodmin; an excellent area - well worth a visit.


Wood Farm Caravan Park, Charmouth, Dorset; 3rd - 7th July

Rookesbury Park Caravan Club Site, Fareham, Hampshire; 30th June - 3rd July

Eurotunnel; Folkestone - Calais - Folkestone; 18th April & 30th June

Kawan Village Le Val d’Authie, Villers sur Authie, Picardy; 27th - 30th June

Campsite La Croix du Vieux Pont, Berny-Rivière; 25th - 27th June

La Forge Sainte Marie, Thonnance les Moulins, Champagne-Ardenne; 22nd - 25th June

© Homer Lindsay 2013, 2014, 2015