A new journey, part 2 - Towing
I was often towing caravans off and onto Crasken Farm. Crasken Farm was a little community. Some people lived in the ‘Round’ in mostly caravans. The ‘Round’ is a Neolithic settlement. Some people lived in the farmhouse and various outbuildings. The parties helped to pay for the renovation of the old farm. (More about that place another time.) It was here that I got to know Hairy Rich. He was seeing a girl called Emily who lived on the farm. She had bought a 26’ Tabbart and needed to get it from Exmoor.
The farm on which this enormous caravan was was in the middle of Exmoor somewhere. En route, I had noticed two potentially difficult spots. Both were little hump-back bridges in the lanes back out to the main road. Both had stone walls at a height that could potentially be tight getting the caravan over. One also had a kink in it. The straight bridge was fine, the second was closer. There was enough room for the tail of the caravan to sweep over the little stone wall. After that, the journey home was straightforward. Mind you, the amount of people who when overtaking, had all sorts of looks on their faces as they realised the length of the caravan, was amusing. We stopped halfway for a huge roast dinner at one of those restaurant pubs.
Another rather large caravan delivery was for Dan. Dan is a lovely, very tall friend, who like Irish Andy, has the same birthday as me. He’s a dab hand in the kitchen, too. He had bought a similar size caravan as Emily’s. Only thing was, it was in Basildon, over 300 miles away.
We left home very early and by mid-morning found a little shack close to the collection address in Basildon, selling a lovely array of seafood. We stopped for a bite to eat while Dan ‘phoned ahead of our arrival.
Once the deal was done, I hooked up and we were off. We had a lovely drive back, just plodding along. We were not held up anywhere, even on the M25. As we split off the M3 onto the A303 road to the southwest, I knew we would soon be out of ‘Babylon’; the southeast, and entering the ‘chilled’ southwest. I turned to Dan and suggested that maybe now might be a good time to build a reefer. Amazingly, the build operation was completed and ready to spark just as we were coming up on Stonehenge.
Dan also has a pizza oven trailer based on a Rice horse trailer. I’ve towed that about, too. The first time I did, I had no idea of how heavy it would be. He’d said that it was weighty, but had no idea of actual weight. As soon as I pulled away, I thought, “Bloody hell! This has got some weight in it.” I reckoned it was at least on the 3.5t limit. I could certainly feel it wanting to push me down the steeper declines. I told him that he needed to weigh it. For starters, the oven itself is concrete!
Things were changing on Crasken Farm. Mobile homes were replacing the caravan community. I towed a lot of caravans from there to other sites. Many went to scrap. On one occasion a trailer was hired so that I could move two or three at a time. When the mobiles turned up I ended up siting them into position.
Photograph (generic/not actual vehicle/s) courtesy of www.gumtree.com