The Road to Somewhere Part 4 – a ‘van with a view

Me again, reporting – still – from Cambridgeshire, though we have now moved sites, to the south of the city and a little bit closer to Addenbrooke’s where HRH, aka Trev’s Mum continues to reside. No real news I’m afraid – she’s looking better some days but as I type there’s still no indication of when she might get parole. Seriously though, the care she has been getting has been superb although I’m sure she has tried their patience considerably on occasions…..

Addenbrooke’s hospital is a place I’ve got to know well over the years – as visitor much more than a patient thankfully – and it is now almost unrecognisable from years ago – the original buildings are still there but swamped with continual development not just of the hospital itself but a massive bio-medical research campus. A major addition is the new Papworth Hospital – due to relocate next year. Papworth, you may know specialises in heart and lungs, from stents to transplants and it is there that they done such a great job on Trev’s ticker some 14 years ago.

The hospital has been on it’s current site since 1976, however the original building was in Trumpington Street in Cambridge and founded in 1766 thanks to the one Dr John Addenbrooke, a fellow of St Catherine's College, who left a gift of £4,500 in his will to fund a hospital for the poor. A considerable sum of money then and Dr A. died aged just 39 too.

So, what else? Well, I deeply regret casting aside my virtually unused Costa loyalty card a few months back as the one in the hospital concourse has received a considerable amount of the Blogger in Black & Portly Partner’s custom over the past couple of weeks. When travelling we always try and use independents but at the hospital options are limited to Costa and er, Costa. Oh well, I’ve tasted worse.

Right our new site – Lynchets Farm - as I said is south of the city, in the village of Great Chishill. It’s a CS (Certificated Site) on a farm and it was a cracking find by Trev, not least because of the tremendous views over the south Cambridgeshire countryside. Duxford, with it’s Imperial War Museum is not far away and the day we arrived they were having an air show, necessitating some nifty cut through a few villages to avoid the inevitable traffic jams on the main road. Not a route you’d normally choose with a caravan but local knowledge helped. The Site Arrival video – when I get on to it, will show the best way to the site. The Red Arrows, who opened the show made a couple of passes quite near to the site which had the lenses clicking.

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Great Chishill is the highest point in Cambridgeshire – not the greatest of achievements when you consider how generally flat it is around here but it does means that The Pheasant can boast that it is the county’s highest pub. It’s also a very short walk from the site – now you get the picture. Yes, we’ve visited a few times, mostly for a pint or two – but for food as well at the weekend which was terrific, although I’ve never had a rhubarb cheesecake served this way before – beats a wooden board or a shoe box I suppose:

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Trev has been doing pretty much all the driving since we left home. My knee has been playing up big time – a more severe reoccurrence of a problem I had a couple of years ago. I’m trying to rest it as much as possible so Trev has been behind the wheel and to relieve the monotony has used various different routes to the hospital and back passing through some of south Cambridgeshire’s lovely villages. Again, local knowledge thanks to his days as a Cambridge cabbie but also because of when we lived here we’d always try a different village pub on a Wednesday night for a meal and a pint or two.

A number have sadly gone – to be replaced by convenience stores, sometimes a curry house or more often than not, flats or houses. One that we were delighted to see still thriving though was the King William IV at Heydon – the next village along from where we are staying. The King ‘Bill’ always had a reputation for good food and for it’s landlady Elizabeth who would always be found behind the bar in full goth attire – long black Victorian dress, white make up and black eyeliner – the works. She looked great but passed away some years ago sadly. However they’ve kept the décor the same – farming implements, dark wood, lots of brass, leather and big wooden tables suspended on heavy chains. It still looks fantastic but my pictures – again with the phone, don’t do it justice. Need to play with the white balance. Or something!

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Right, again a little shorter than usual, but there really isn’t much else to report. I’ll leave you with a few more photo’s from this lovely site. Whilst circumstances mean this hasn’t been the most enthralling of trips, views like this are a welcome sight although it’s worth pointing out it hasn’t always been this quiet:

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We are moving sites again this week and have a little day out planned too. This will be the one and only blog from Lynchets Farm so I’ll do the ‘Getting Connected’ report now:

Not surprisingly for a CL or CS there was no dedicated site WiFi. Using the directional antenna attached to our Solwise WiFi Kit I was able to pick up some very weak BT WiFi which was usable even allowing me to upload a video to YouTube – although it took a while. That has proved illusive during the last couple of days though and I suspect the antenna may have shifted a little in the winds, highlighting the main problem with directional aerials – they need to be pointing in exactly the right direction!

So access to the internet has come via my ‘phone’s hotspot which is on BT Mobile (piggybacking EE) which has been fine. So fine in fact that I’ve gone through nearly a month’s data allowance in just a few days! Speeds of 8.5 Mbps download and 2.1 Mbps upload were the average. Firing up the Hauwei mobile WiFi device reported the following: Vodafone 5/5 on 3G. Three offered 1/5 and EE 2/5 on 4G. Nothing on O2.

Until next time, thanks as always for reading. It’s not been the most enthralling of trips so far but it could be worse. We have the summer off, we’re away in the ‘van and the weather has been (largely) good. Look out for Site Arrival and tour videos doing the rounds on social media soon.

Cheers

Rich & Trev

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