Night shifts were ahead and with a few days off after it seemed silly to not take advantage of them doesn’t it, even if that means only grabbing a few hours sleep so our batteries doesn’t run totally flat once we get there.
So, decision was made and we booked a 3 night stop at Meathop Fell C&M site with the plan in mind of once Pod was set up, we’d relax, feet up and nod off if needed, at least we’d be away in Pod.
We were just under 1 ½ hours away from the site so those precious few hours sleep were grabbed before we set off. Pod was collected from storage and we arrived at the site just before 2.
Once booked in, with site map in hand we began the trawl of the site looking for a pitch which allowed an awning. This proved to be harder than we expected as there seemed to be far fewer awning pitches and of those left they appeared to be mainly all grass. So much so, we decided to go awningless and as the weather wasn’t the best this didn’t seem like a bad idea.
Within an hour we were fully set up, the pup tent was sited near the door and stuffed full with our outdoor gear, slow cooker and anything else we didn’t want to clutter Pod with.
That done, we went for a stroll round the site and checked out the facilities on site. These had been updated and were of the standard Caravan &Motorhome type, spotlessly clean and well maintain, grounds too were well cared for, although quite a few of the pitches were at a jaunty angle and may require blocks for levelling.
During this we caught up with one of the site wardens and queried the low number of awning pitches, we were informed that due to the increase in 8ft wide ‘vans, plus large awnings the pitches no longer met regulation distances and all the pitches had to be re-measured and allocated accordingly, this ultimately resulted in less pitches for awnings. The reasoning was understandable but not best and it looks like some major restructuring on sites may be necessary if they are to accommodate big ‘vans and health/safety regs.
Our tour of the site done we headed back to Pod for tea and biscuits, which was subsequently followed by a well deserved afternoon snooze. To be honest, the rest of the afternoon and evening was spent chilling in Pod, all cosy, listening to the radio and enjoying the heating which kicked in every now and then whilst it was blowing an absolute hooley outside.
Woke the following morning feeling refreshed and body clocks now felt they were the right side of wrong, the weather was still a bit hit and miss but we made the decision to drive into Grange-over-Sands and see what was on offer.
The distance from the site to GoS was walkable but the rain at times became torrential and there wouldn’t of been much fun in doing any sight seeing soaked through. Parking was £3.20 for 3 hours and if need be we could return to top it up.
First stop was the legendary pie shop ‘Higginsons of Grange’, where we went slightly mad. You should never visit any food stall hungry, needless to say we came away with a wonderful selection; pork, apple and black pudding, beef pie, Polish sausage, cheese and onion pasty, egg custard and a mint slice.
Once devoured, the rain seemed to clear and a stroll along the Promanade seemed in order, it was also possibly a vain and guilty attempt to wear off some of our lunchtime delights.
A light breeze was blowing in from the coast and as we walked along we could see from Arnside on our left to Morecambe on our far right side. The Prom was a spotlessly clean wide walkway, walled with an amazing array of colourful flowers one side and the beach and its grassy meadow the other. It seemed the perfect place for those who fancied a constitutional walk, cycle or run.
On reaching Holme Island we turned and began our walk back up the Prom. As we turned the loud noise of rushing water made us look out to over the estuary and we were amazed to see the sea racing inwards and along the shoreline. It looked dark and fierce as it travelled along with some speed, so much so the seagulls who were trying to out run it had no choice to be take off and fly to safety.
Within 10 metres the stretch of sand between the mainland and the Island had totally gone and again looked as serene as when we’d set off. If nothing else it made us fully understand why this particular coastline was known to be very treacherous with mud flats and quicksand.
After a play on the outside gym we eventually reached the Lido. A beautiful outdoor swimming pool build in 1932 and unused since 1993, in its day it looked incredible and we could only hope that funding was obtained to bring this amazing Grade II listed building back to full life again, even better if they managed to keep some of its original features.
Our stroll continued along the Prom and at its end we reached the kids play area, all well maintained, no litter or graffiti to be seen.
On our return walk the obligatory ice cream was bought and we ventured up onto the main road and headed in the direction of the park. Again, a beautifully maintained area with a variety of birdlife and their wooden lake houses dotted all over, plus a central fountain overlooked by the villages Cenotaph.
Once out of the park we crossed the road at the roundabout and began our walk back up the main road. The Poetry Post caught our eye, here we found a beautiful poem about the seasons hung on a small notice board and presumed it was changed on a regular basis, we thought this was a brilliant little bit of local community spirit and something that made GoS very special.
Within a short distance we found something else that continued in this vain, the community orchard, grown for those that live in GoS and its visitors. A large selection of dessert and cooking apples were growing in abundance from a wonderful variety trees. Each tree was named with its variety and needless to say we had to take a few dessert ones for our after dinner snack.
We eventually headed back to the car and drove the short distance to the site, think we can safely say GoS had become a very special place to us, unique in the fact it had its own charm and in someways seemed unaffected by the greater outside world.
Back at Pod dinner was cooked whilst torrential rain drummed down with some force on the roof. Have to say, we still haven’t gotten used to the space, heating and large cooking area, so at the moment making meals are an absolute pleasure.
It rained through the night and we slept so well we weren’t in a rush to leave our cosy bed.
Eventually we dragged ourselves up and a fry up breakfast was had whilst we made plans for the day, Sizergh seemed like a good idea so off we set with our National Trust cards.
Once through the doors we took our time wandering from room to room where we discovered the huge wood panelled bedroom with a hidden water closet and the extravagant banquet hall with its overhead balcony.
We eventually worked our way out to the grounds and toured the gardens, passing the beautiful lake full of lilies with the odd dragonfly passing over.
Next we headed to Lakeland Motor Museum. £8.50 for an adult to get in but worth every penny, so many different vehicles and all with a story to tell.
We were taken through a time tunnel and we both had special memories of the cars on display, plus a few of the very small ones.
For one of us it was the trusty Triumph, full of childhood memories and day trips away.
We were inevitably drawn to the small things such as the Peel 350 and would love to still be able to see them on the roads.
The TVR 7 litre V12 even ventured out with its owner from time to time.
From here we walked over to the Bluebird Exhibition and on the way we came across a 1.5 ton Burlington Langdale Caravan and managed to peek through its leaded windows for a shot of the inside, looked great inside and even had a small dinette.
The Campbell Bluebird Exhibition was as moving as ever, his incredible story told from floor to ceiling with a few replicas on display too.
Time came to head back to Pod, our last evening was spent pottering around Pod and chatting to the odd visitor who took great interest in our Specialised front cover. We even had the odd person approach us with a concerned look on their faces and questioned us about our little pup tent, they seemed to have come to the conclusion we were keeping a dog in it. Finding this a little shocking but amusing we corrected them on this, if we did have the pleasure of any four legged companion we can confirm it would undoubtedly be the centre of attention and probably our bed, never outside in a diddy pup tent.
Morning arrived and the sun made a timely appearance which allowed us to pack up and remain dry whilst doing so. Once done we were back on the road again, but we can definitely say we’ll be back as we’d found another short distance bolt hole, ideal for a weekend or midweek escape.