Exploring the holiday park.

We were both up bright and early the next morning as we had some shopping to do. The breeze from yesterday had calmed down somewhat but it was hazy and overcast as well. Shopping done and sided, we then set off to explore our surroundings. Riviere Sands is one of the smaller Haven camps and it is situated at Hayle Towans and affords a stunning view of the whole of St Ives Bay. There is a club available for family entertainment, an indoor and outdoor swimming pool (the outdoor one has a chute) a cafe for snacks, a small arcade and outside a children’s play area including archery lessons, bungee jumping and crazy golf. There was also some four wheeled bikes available to hire, more of which later.

Cheers Kerri!

Across the road from the entrance was the Spar shop, which was fairly small compared to other parks we have stayed at previously, and then following a brief walk of about 100 yards or so, you reached the parks restaurant, the Bluff Inn. This venue was well worth a visit if only to take in the fabulous views from either the dining area or the outside terrace area. Not only that, but the meals available were quite reasonable, £2.99 for a cooked 5 item breakfast to give one example, and on Sundays they were offering a lunchtime carvery for a very reasonable price.

Of course Kerri had to sample the hospitality on offer and so we had our lunch there.  Following lunch we took the opportunity to walk along part of the cliff top path to our caravan, as the path and steps up to the park are not far from where our van was. As we walked along the path, I couldn’t help noticing the holiday homes perched along the top of the slope, and despite the fact that they would afford their residents some breathtaking views of the whole of St Ives Bay, I think it would take a very brave family to stay in one if the weather was windy!  The word Towans actually means ‘sand dune’ in Cornish, and this particular stretch of coastline contains about five different ‘Towans’ including Riviere, Hayle etc. Had Kerri and I had our walking boots with us, I think that we would probably have tackled more of this walk along this particular coastal path as it affords some absolutely stunning views. As it turned out, we did eventually meet two ladies who were in Cornwall doing just that, on a walking holiday but based at our park.

Vans with a view.

The weather had changed, the blustery wind from yesterday had died down but I was astounded to see via my weather app that tomorrow (Sunday) it was forecast to be warmer at Brighouse than it was in Hayle! After returning to the caravan, we changed into our cossies and paid the swimming pool a visit. Unfortunately its not a big size and also they don’t have ‘adults only’ swimming times, so we had to compromise and just swim back and forth as best we could, weaving our way around families and children as we went.  Kerri had wanted to go down the outdoor slide but by the time we arrived it was closed. Hmm.  At least I didn’t have to sit there on the sidelines watching her swim up and down as I was forced to do last year. Back to the van, costumes and towels  hung out to dry and following a quick shower, we were soon in our jammies and relaxing watching some TV.  Here are some of the photos I took as we explored. Click on the Album to see them all.

Tomorrow Kerri was insisting we hired out one of the four wheeled bikes for an hour and she was also insisting that she would be pedalling AND steering. As I fell asleep that night, I wondered whether I would survive it all…..

TG

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A holiday of a lifetime, on our way.

I’ve always wanted to go to Cornwall, and during my battle with cancer last year I vowed that this year we would go there for a holiday. At last we set off on Friday the 25th May for a week in a holiday home at Riviere Sands near Hayle, travelling via my favourite mode of transport the train. After catching a train from our local station to Leeds we arrived early, in fact we could have caught the earlier train to Plymouth at 09.10am and as it turned out we might have been better to have done just that.

Our train arrives.

Wiling the time away whilst we waited for our train, we had a drink from the Pumpkin cafe on the station platform, Kerri having her usual hot chocolate whilst I had a decaf cappuccino. After what seemed like an age, our train finally pulled into platform 12 and we settled down into our seats for the long journey to Plymouth. Despite the fact that it was quite warm outside, we were nice and cool thanks to the air conditioning in the coach. I’d also been helped to get my suitcase onto the train and in the luggage rack by a nice young man and in fact our journey down to Cornwall has helped restore my faith in human kindness, as we received help every time we had to get the suitcase off or on the train. Either that, or I looked so feeble and old that they took pity on me!

As we neared Plymouth, we were held up by approximately half an hour due to signalling problems and we missed our connection with the Great Western train to Hayle. They did contact the station at Plymouth and ask if the train could be held up until ours arrived, but they wouldn’t wait, so once we all embarked at Plymouth with now another hour nearly to wait, we were all compensated with a ticket for free drinks for our trouble, and handed a compensation claim to make to Cross Country trains. However, this was actually not fair in my view, as it wasn’t the fault of Cross Country trains, it was a Network Rail problem.

At least we had plenty of time for a toilet break whilst we waited. Trouble was, we were not going to be arriving at Hayle station until roughly 20.00pm or thereabouts. I just hoped that someone would be available to give us our van keys at the holiday camp once we finally arrived. Just in case, I rang the office ( I had the booking papers with me which contained their phone number) and warned them that it would probably be after 20.00pm before we arrived, and I was assured that someone would be manning the desk to give out the keys.

First Great Western HST

At last the Great Western train arrived and we all piled on with our luggage. Again I received help with our suitcase and we settled down for the remainder of our journey. The coach that we had chosen happened to not have its air conditioner working, so again all passengers in the coach were given free drinks. Hmm. Good job we have had a toilet break I thought as we journeyed along. Eventually we arrived at Hayle station. It was a steep walk down to the town itself from the station, and from there I rang for a taxi after getting the number from a passer-by.  It was about a 10 to 15 minute drive from the station to the holiday park. Sure enough a member of staff was manning the office and handed us our keys after marking down on the map of the park where our particular van was.

The kitchen.

By now, both of us were just about managing to keep upright. I was tired and so was Kerri, but we mustered forth all of our remaining resources and found our new home for the week.  First job, cup of refreshing tea!  It was just a good job that I had had the foresight to bring some teabags with me and the man in the office kindly lent us some milk, as the park Spar shop was closed. After that we emptied the suitcase and put everything in its allotted place. Whoever had cleaned the van had forgotten the sheets and pillowcases for Kerri’s single bed, so I had to return to the office to get some for her before we could make her bed up. Hmm.

Before you could say ‘Jack Robinson’ we were both attired in our jimjams and ready for bed! What a day! I do know this, there is no way would I ever contemplate driving all the way to Cornwall from Leeds even if I could drive, and it makes you realise just how big our country is. It was bed at 10.00 and as soon as my head hit the pillow I was fast asleep. We would have to go exploring the park and our surroundings tomorrow.

TG

A day out in York.

Right outside the Railway Museum, you can board a road train which transports you to the Minster. As K is always reluctant to walk and I needed to reserve my energy, we gladly took advantage and boarded it to ride to the Minster. It only costs £2 per adult, so well worth it, and unlike our previous trip on a road train in Bridlington, there were no wet seats or rain lashing into the carriages either! On arriving at the stop outside the Minster, I gazed up to see it peeking through the summer clothed trees. I think its the very first time I have been able to take pictures of York Minster in glorious sunshine!

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A walk along the cliffs

As usual, the weather didn’t promise anything (more rain in other words) on Friday, and as we had our packing to do, we decided a hearty cooked breakfast in the restaurant was called for, followed by a walk around the holiday park and along the cliffs to the south. As it turned out, I didn’t really enjoy the breakfast, I tend to grill mine when I cook one, and it was far too fatty for my liking. K enjoyed hers though. We then set off along the road towards the pitch area for anyone staying in tents etc, or who bring their own towing caravans.

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Monday, swimming and the beach.

On Monday, we had been promised gale force winds of up to 80 miles an hour and rain. We decided that the best course of action was to stay put on the park, and so at 9.30am K found herself stepping gingerly into the swimming pool. She was lucky enough to have the entire pool all to herself, and I really envied her. I had been advised not to risk going swimming whilst receiving chemotherapy because of the risk of picking up an infection, and so I found myself relegated to watching her from the side of the pool as she swam from one end to the other.

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A Week Off.

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We’re off on a holiday next week. It was booked last year before I knew I had cancer. You can get some real bargains at the holiday camps when you book early. We are going to Reighton Sands holiday park near Filey. It’s another holiday park with lot’s of fond memories for us. We enjoyed  some wonderful holidays there when the children were small.

 

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A Cafe Tale

Our Park Cafe

The weather was so beautiful yesterday that we decided to walk down to the park and not waste the glorious spring sunshine. For the first time ever, we stopped at the small Cafe just inside the park entrance where we sat down outside to enjoy an ice cream each. As we sat there, I cast my mind back to the history of this now very popular resting place. It has enjoyed a very chequered history, and not one that would have ever encouraged the thought on any long term resident of this town that it would end up in its current popular guise.

It was built originally as public toilets, the nearest door you can see in the photograph was the entrance to the Ladies, and at the other end of the building was the Gents. Unfortunately it was not furnished with any windows at all, so as I recall from any of my very infrequent visits there, it was dark and dingy and not a place to hover around in. In fact that goes some way to explaining why I can’t recall much about the exact layout, because I would have avoided using it unless really desperate.

Most residents must have felt the same, because over a period of time it ended up neglected and uncleaned as did most public toilets. Before it was finally shut down and closed however, it was the venue for a local scandal involving men meeting up there for clandestine goings on of I suppose a sexual nature. I can’t remember the exact details, but the police must have been ‘caging the joint’ (our local police station is only down the road) and several men were arrested.

It stood then for a while not being used for anything until a Brighouse couple decided to take it over and turn it into the very popular cafe that it is today. On warm days such as yesterday, tables and chairs are placed outside on the paved area in front of the Cafe, and when its raining, there is some room (but not much) to sit down inside.

In the photo are three bike riders, all dressed in full riding gear, who propped their bikes against the fence in front of the Cafe and sat down to enjoy a  coffee or a latte. Sat at another of the tables were two young ladies complete with twins in a twin buggy who were fast asleep as they enjoyed the weather and the inevitable texting on their mobiles. Behind K was a family with a dog which kept barking, causing K to keep jumping out of her skin and have a face like thunder. She hates dogs barking and heaved a sigh of relief when they got up to go.

Of course many people just call in for an ice cream or drink as they walk past the Cafe on their way down to the slides and swings. It has become a very popular stop off for many, and is much more suited to its present role, though I would have added a window to the front of the building as its still rather dark and dingy inside.

Here’s some more info about the Cafe from our local rag.

http://www.brighouseecho.co.uk/news/cafe_is_now_the_coolest_spot_1_796480

TG