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  • Keef Hellinger

Blog 184 - Kessingland and Southwold, Suffolk with Pals, 15th to 18th September 2022, Van Trip 51

Updated: Sep 20

Created by KeefH Web Designs, September 19th, 2022, 8.18 AM


Motorhome trip No51: Sept 15th- 18th 2022


NOTTS->White House Beach C&MC Club Site, Beach Road, Kessingland, Lowestoft, Suffolk NR33 7RW ->NOTTS 335 miles


pals at waterfront restaurant kessingland
Final days lunch at the wonderful Waterfront restaurant

MENU

  1. Introduction / Overview of Weekend

  2. You Tube video of all photos and videos

  3. Photo highlights and Norfolk / Suffolk "pals" camping memorabilia

  4. White House Beach caravan & motorhome club site, Kessingland

  5. George Orwell in Southwold

  6. Map of the Area

  7. Audiobook

  8. The end, tags etc.

INTRODUCTION

We had packed the van, mostly, the day before which was a good thing as it was spitting when we came to do the final packing up. Breakfasted and ready to leave soon after 9-ish Keef had a nightmare time trying to get the iPod touch to play music despite a good long try at it (much to Annie's annoyance) #technologyeh Note post return iPod touch all rebuilt from scratch after resetting ready for music on our next trip. We liked the Norfolk / Suffolk area so much that we are thinking of returning shortly but for a much longer spell, realistically a 4 hour drive each way for a long weekend now we are nearly Septuagenarians is a little too much, it was no issue for a weekend after work on a Friday way back when the boys were young , but that was just a fun escape from work sent with our dear pals, Pete & Joy and family.


Anyhow we eventually left after filling up with diesel (wow that hurt price wise, well over £100 for a tank nowadays) #WalletOuch 😉 There is no direct route to Suffolk and Norfolk as we have found over the years, i.e., no motorways so it's mostly A roads like A52 and A47, basically taking us from home via Spalding, Grantham (famed for the Iron Lady), King's Lynn, Dereham, Beccles, Lowestoft and Kessingland. We did stop for some pre prepared tuna mayo cobs at Frensham just before Dereham. #yummy


We arrived at the campsite, White House beach at about 2.20 pm this Thursday to check in. Site arrival times have altered recently being 1 pm, and what with the hassles the club has had with its new booking system for both customers and wardens alike we were glad to arrive a little later, there was only a minimal queue. On the last day it looked like Bedlam with so many caravans and motorhomes arriving at the same time.


We introduced ourselves to the lovely wardens Helen & Neil who coincidentally knew our pals Lawrence and Yvonne as they had worked with them in Airdrie Scotland and even more coincidentally after Helen rang me a couple of times, we established she taught at a junior school in Long Eaton in an earlier life and Neil came from Stabbo (Stapleford) where his parents still live, what a small world we live in. Anyhow we set off to find a hard standing pitch, we selected pitch 93, set up, it started to rain. It was a good flat pitch and quite close to both the amenities block and the nearby water / bins / ablutions site. Returning to tell Helen about our pitch number we asked for an extension till 4 pm on Sunday to allow time for our Sunday lunch at the Waterfront restaurant. Fully expecting to pay, Helen said it was at her discretion so all good there, thanks Helen.!


There are an even number of grass and hard standing pitches on this site with a couple of rows beach side, but they are first come, first served and we weren't first #haha

It was fairly windy but had now stopped raining, so we decided to go for a stroll on what turned out to be a very pebbly beach and a long hop to the sea, as it turned out literally, Keef foolishly thought it was sand so wore shorts and flip flops. #ouch We walked over the carefully laid old tyre inners down to the water's edge, some interesting beach plant life and old boats but huge waves and a sharp incline to the sea, so turned back, up to the Sailor's home Inn and nosed in at the Waterfront restaurant. Took quite a few pictures on route.


The it was back to the motorhome for a relax and early tea. Spam, Hash Browns and Baked Beans #carboverload and yoghurt for pud. Early evening Keef made use of the TV aerial hook up on the post with his cable and we watched some "real-time" TV including the wonderful Repair shop.


Friday was raining most of the morning, probably good for farmers but not motorhomers #haha Keef spied out a pitch for Pete & Joy as the site was very busy and not many folks were leaving. Pitch 117.

What I hadn't realised was this was not the pitch without awning P&J had booked, oh well no worries they arrived about 1.30 pm and got set up. We said our greetings, K doing some scones and jam and then we headed off for the Sailor's Home Inn up the road for a jolly good catch up, what a fabulous pub that sold 5 different types of local real ale, we were of course forced to try most but Keef settled on "Gone Fishing" and Pete their "Best", the ladies having wine and Cinzano respectively. What a fun time. 271 years around the table now.

In the evening P&J cooked a lovely Lasagna with garlic bread followed by Tiramisu, accompanied obviously by an appropriate amount of alcohol, well why not, we were all on holiday #suchfun


Saturday Pete worked out which bus and from where we could use our old folks passes into either Lowestoft or Southwold. As we all love Southwold that was the choice. It's a short walk up the hill to Wash Lane where either the 164 or 99 (differing bus companies) leave from. It's about a 30-minute trip which would normally cost about £3.70. We caught the 164 which came along first. It stops at the far end of the High Street. What a lovely place Southwold is. Weather wasn't bad although a little grey and likely to rain. We resaw many of the shops and architecture we had seen on our previous trip to Southwold, not in the motorhome but in a family rented holiday cottage BLOG 89, we then walked along the beach front, waves lashing at the defense wall, past all those lovely beach huts, expensive to buy and about 9 available to hire (£24 a day). We stopped to watch 3 surfers in the huge waves by the pier and a nut case swimming in the sea, it takes all sort, he looked a little blue in my humble opinion #haha


We then strolled to the end of the pier after a brief stop for coffee and then back past the crazy mirrors. There was an appeal for Ukraine van and a bit of history about Southwold celeb Goerge Orwell. We then headed back into town past the stately lighthouse and went into the Tip Tree Cafe for coffee and cake, Black Forest Gateau (very 70s) and Lemon Drizzle. What surprised us was despite the lady saying they were short staffed as the reason we couldn't have a piece of their lovely looking quiche; we saw no difference in cutting cake to quiche, oh well. We just had to live with it with our tongue's hanging out #haha

We also bought some nice jams in the shop; the gins however were overpriced. Then it was onto the old Cheese shop and purchasing a huge slap of Snowden's mature Black Bomber, probably along with St Agur my fave cheese.

We then caught the bus back to the site and called in for one quick one at the pub, why not?


Keef cooked halloumi burger, halloumi chips and garlic bread with salad for tea, followed by citrus cheesecake in little ramakins and cheese and biscuits. A fab day all in all. Lots of gassing as well #obvs


Sunday Joy cooked a lovely breakfast and we all started to pack up ready for the return journey but not before being hugely surprised by having Sunday lunch at the wonderful waterfront Restaurant. Must give them 5 stars on Trip advisor.


Whilst awaiting going out for lunch Keef helped Helen & Neil, the wardens, take down poor Mr. Hodge next doors awning. The poor old fellow had fallen and broken his arm in 2 places and was all plastered up, he was alone and lived in Kenilworth so was having to be transported back the next day, car, caravan and gear, not a great break (if you will forgive the pun) for this older gentlemen, we all felt sorry for him.


Anyhow after lunch we all said our goodbyes and wended our way home, what a lovely weekend Annie & I really enjoyed ourselves.


As Boris and Arnie once said... Hasta la vista baby....

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THE WHOLE TRIP IN PICTURE FORM WITH MUSIC

See our full photo and video diary

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HIGHLIGHTS & PAST MEMORABILIA

See highlights with our pals, what a fun weekend. NOSTALGIA TIME: I have also included a few from our earlier visits to the area, be that Aldeburgh, Southwold, Walberswick, Cromer, Pentney Park and nearby Gayton, Hunstanton (Searles), Hopton on Sea including nearby California beach, Swaffham Beckland Meadows (Blog 45) or Kessingland. As far as I can tell from my photo records we visited June 1986, June 1987, Jul 1990, May 1991, May 1996, June 1999, May 2000, Sept 2002, Aug 2012 so it's been a while since we last visited that area, i.e., 10 years #smile

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OUR CAMPSITE

Here is the supporting stuff for the White House Beach caravan and motorhome club site that we picked up that you may find of interest including i) the site map, we were on Pitch 93 hard standing, very close to good service point, and Pete & Joy were on pitch 64, the only standard pitch without awning unless you include the front seaside, which are impossible to get on anyhow, ii) the site details sheet iii) some stuff on local walks and history of Kessingland iv) the fab real ales at the sailors inn just a short walk up from the site v) the fish and chip restaurant further up the road, allegedly the best in Suffolk, P&J have been there, we will on another occasion.

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GEORGE ORWELL QUOTES

He spent time in Southwold as a teenager and return again to this beloved seaside town in his 30s, he lived next door to the now bakery and then fish and chip shop in the high street, we were reminded of some of his politically astute quotes from both Animal Farm and 1984 but there are many more.
image of george orwells house in southwold, suffolk as it is by 2022
image of george orwell's house in southwold, suffolk as it is by 2022

  1. Some animals are equal, but some are more equal than others (somewhat prophetic in the current climes)!

  2. Big brother is watching

  3. I will work harder

  4. 4 legs good, 2 legs bad .... and 4 legs good, 2 legs BETTER (Hmm!)

  5. Napolean is ALWAYS right

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MAP

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AUDIOBOOK

You can listen to this blog as an audiobook if you would prefer, I have also provided a full slideshow with an audio overlay, which may suit some, maybe the hard of reading 😉

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THAT'S ALL FOLKS


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