Fortunately we only had tickets for the Saturday because the rain set in again today and it was heavy from mid-morning throughout. Cold as well so an opportunity today to update the blog.
Next a word on Operation Stack. It must be unbelievably miserable for the people of Kent trying to go about their daily business. We see on the news just row upon row of lorries – we don’t see the misery suffered by the locals as all the minor roads and towns are just gridlocked.
And most of the issues this week have been caused by the migrant low life in Calais trying to cross to Blighty to claim their benefits and healthcare.
Ahh, my birthday treat.
Pendragon @ Ramblin Man
The Ramblin Man fair where my fave band are playing – Pendragon.
Their set was fantastic
Pendragon @ Ramblin Man
if a little short for my liking but I had a front row position and their act was watched by several thousand festival goers, receiving much praise.
There were plenty of other good bands on (we attended just the Saturday – luckily as Sunday was forecast to be washout number 2) such as “Blue Oyster Cult”, “Saxon”, “Scorpions”, “Dream Theater”, “Anathema” and “Camel”. Plus many more at the array of stages.
We were fully prepared for a wet day today. Weather warnings had been issued and they weren’t far from the mark. In a 24 hour spell, the normal rainfall for the month of July descended upon us.
This was a day to stay at the van and we spent the afternoon sorting through pictures from prior trips. We’ve something like 50 thousand that need sorting, cataloging and in many cases, deleting. We managed to sort through around 500 so a long way to go.
A word about the campsite.
Bearsted CC Site
Like all Caravan Club sites these days it’s expensive and the six nights broke the £200 barrier – although our daughter Sue joined us for the entire trip.
The campsite is well maintained and our fully serviced pitch is hard standing and of course has all facilities included.
As has been noted on other websites, the wardens are a bit picky and certainly not flexible regarding late arrivals. One hapless Dutch couple who turned up at 9:15pm were told in no uncertain terms that the site closed at 8 and they wouldn’t be staying…
Not the proper Leeds – but the Leeds in Kent. I’m not certain the proper one has a castle although it does have a Brewery experience!
Thursday was a day out at the (not) Leeds castle which is litterally just a mile or so from the Caravan Club Campsite at Bearsted. Mind you, Operation Stack is still in progress and so a 2 minute drive took 20 minutes. More later.
Approaching the Castle
Leeds Castle is definitely worth a visit but it’s expensive. £24 (July, 2015) was the price of an Adult ticket although we secured a 25% discount because of our membership of the Caravan Club
We visited Doddington Hall
for lunch and to stroll around the gardens. This was a worthwhile trip and the cafe food (snacks) was first rate.
Doddington Hall Gardens
Weather was good and so late afternoon we set off to Maidstone to buy supplies for the BBQ. Big mistake. Operation Stack is in full flow and the town was gridlocked. A half hour shop took the best part of 3 hours!
Maidstone – many people have asked why? Good question. Some speculated that it was to join the front line against migrant activity. Alas, something even more rewarding – my birthday present of tickets for the Ramblin Man fair at Mote Park, Maidstone.
No misadventures this time in extracting the caravan from its home at home. The menacing fence has gone and the white lines painted on the concrete helped to guide the van out of its tight spot just perfectly.
The trip to Maidstone took a couple of hours and whilst the traffic was heavy, we didn’t suffer any hold-ups –
Bearsted CC Site
arriving around 3:00pm on our fully serviced pitch at the Bearsted Caravan Club Site.
Setting up would have taken a lot less time had we not pitched next to an old guy and his motorhome. He’s off to mainland Europe now until November and was keen to tell us in great detail about his numerous trips on the continent and especially to Eastern Europe.
Evening was dinner at the Sugar Loaves in Hollingbourne. Good pub grub – nothing fancy but we would certainly visit again.