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Thursday, 19 April 2012

A Few Days In Norfolk or " Hold Onto That Awning SWMBO !! "

We have just returned from a few days at Reedham Ferry Caravan Park in Norfolk,it should have been a full week Saturday to Saturday but the weather was so awful that we have returned on the Thursday.

We took our tandem to get a few rides in but only managd one on the Monday down to Waveney River Centre due to storm and tempest every other day,very windy and every sort of weather,especially rain.

The site itself is in an excellent location at the side of the River Yare adjacent to the chain ferry at Reedham.The facilities were clean but lacked that little bit of TLC which would have made all the difference,but at £18 or so for a "Super Pitch" I suppose I shouldn't complain.

If planning a visit at a busy time,bear in mind that there are only two toilets and two showers for men and three toilets and two showers for women.This arrangement must get very busy when the site is full.There is a new toilet block under construction but this has stalled due to the joiner going bust.

There is a wash-up and washing machines available.

TV reception is excellent but internet access ( on BT Mobile anyway ) is dire.The chap next door was on "3" I think and had good access.

The Orion proved faultless on this trip but the lights played up again on the return journey,will see what the VW dealer has to say next Thursday.

Met a very friendly couple on our arrival who were lusting after an Orion and came to view ours,they seemed impressed.

The only problem we encountered was centred around the awning.Having decided to go home on Thursday we proceeded to pack the Magnum up on the Wednesday afternoon.Took the side and front panels out to pack separately but then there was a sudden gust of wind and the whole shebang rose into the air,awning,frame, the lot and blew over the roof of the van with the frame legs stuck up in the air entangled in the branches of a tree.

We had been on our own on the site for a couple of days as everyone else had got totally pissed off with the weather and gone home,but a motor home had arrived earlier on and the occupants were just strolling past when the awning took to the skies.They offered their assistance which was gladly accepted and we all surveyed the scene wondering what to do as the whole lot was too high to reach without a ladder.

I decided to see if I could locate the aforesaid ladder,or a pair of steps,from the site but it was like the Marie Celeste on a wet Wednesday,not a soul ( in fact we had barely seen a soul all week ).Our motorhome heroes then spotted a builders ladder on the partly constructed toilet block so we untied that carted it across to the van,motorhome man held it away from the van and I climbed it to eventually release all the poles and bring the canvas down to earth.

The van wasn't damaged but the awning has damaged some stitching where it had pulled against the centre Fixon bracket so that will have to be repaired when it has all dried out.

The moral of this tale is not to remove all the pegs prior to removing the awning from the awning rail,this will not happen again !!

This morning when we set off home it had been pouring down for most of the night so,as I should have realised,there was no way the Jetta was going to pull the van off the grass and onto the adjacent track.After creating a realistic impression of a ploughed field we had to unhitch the car and move the van,via the mover, onto the road and rehitch,this will not happen again.It will be motor mover first in any similar conditions.

By the way if anyone ventures to this part of the country I can recommend “Cupcakes” tea rooms on Reedham Quay,well worth a visit.



  1. Interesting post Ian, reminds me of the time when we had a camper van and turned up at P'borough Motorhome Show. We proceeded to erect our Khyam Motordome (without initially pegging it) and a stray gust got underneath it and it described a delightful parabola rearwards, draping itself over the windscreen of the Ducato van behind.
    Luckily no damage was done, although the guy behind us (who I knew) thought his time had come as he woke up from a nap just as the awning descended on his van.
    Like you I learned the lesson and always get pegs in early or leave them in until the last possible moment.

  2. Hi Ian. Shaun here (we were next to you at Reedham). Thanks for your help with my Alko problem. I have ordered the replacement parts and should receive them in a couple of days. I'll send them straight up to you as soon I receive them.
    Thanks again, and it was good to meet you both.

  3. Shaun,

    Always ready to assist an Orion devotee.

    As you no doubt have read we had fun and games later in the week with the awning,just had a phone call from Isabella with the news that it will be £38 to repair it,it could have been a lot worse I suppose.

    I remember you saying that they couldn't put land drains onto the site but with the amount of rain it put down they need to do something,you did well to go home when you did really,apart from Monday it all went downhill weatherwise.

    You missed a bit of "excitement",there was a two man tent at the top of the site but we had seen no one anywhere near it,SWMBO asked a chap on the site about it and apparently it was left by two lads who the police were after and they had legged it,probably abroad.The tent was full of drugs but the police weren't interested and suggested someone set fire to it,which is exactly what happened.

    It all happens in Reedham.


    1. Hi Ian.
      We were up at Reedham again a week ago. Weather was a bit wet, but an enjoyable weekend was had. We had heard about the 'druggy tent' previously, but forgot to ask anymore about it.
      I sent you the replacement Alko parts on Friday, so you should receive them today (Mon). Cloud you let me know that you've got them.
      Thanks again

  4. Shaun,

    Yes the parts arrived this morning thank you very much.

    Is the giant rut still there that we created trying to move the van ??


  5. I remember you saying that they couldn't put land drains onto the site but with the amount of rain it put down they need to do something,