The Lower Treave Caravan and Camping Park Blog

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Sunday, 30 May 2010


Had a visit from Matt Trevaskis and his stunning new electric vehicle yesterday. He was giving it a quick test drive on Sennen Cove hill!

ecodrive is partnering with Cornwall Council to become one of the UK's first 'Plugged In Places', through the UK Department for Transport's Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) funding, aiming to provide a network of around 400 charging stations across Cornwall for, initially, a public sector fleet and subsequently private users and tourists.

The charging points will support businesses and individuals considering purchasing, leasing or renting electric cars, motoscooters and light commercial vehicles.

They will be positioned for easy recharging in car parks for commuters, at retail centres and tourist attractions and will eventually include rapid charging facilities for 'pit stop' charging.

As well as encouraging drivers to switch to the lower carbon Electric Vehicles, the charging stations will also support community car clubs which are proven to reduce the number of vehicles on the road AND the number of miles that people drive.

Our dream is an electric bus which runs shuttles around all of the campsites down to the cove...complete with board racks and windbreak carriers!


Wednesday, 26 May 2010


Recently arrived back into Newquay Airport and discovered just what a challenge that location is for public transport.

There is a bus service to Newquay and one to Padstow....and then changes to Truro, Bodmin and onwards.

Fortunately, the staff at BioTravel were on the ball and came up with this neat solution for the four passengers in the queue (two of us to Lands End, one for Falmouth, one for St Ives).

A BioTravel cab to Truro railway station for all of us, connecting with a train to Falmouth for our new-found travel buddy from Cologne, which is incidentally where we had just come from, a train to Penzance for the two of us, dropping off the brother of the bridegroom, who had travelled from Ireland, at St Erth for the branch line in time to make the wedding at St Ives, leaving us with a short cab ride back to Lower Treave. Not quite Steve Martin and John Candy...we only shared the transport!

Well done to BioTravel, here's their website



Thursday, 20 May 2010


Our kind neighbours have a surplus of eggs at the moment..not just any eggs, but a selection to suit every I have had some fun with a three egg breakfast.

On the right is Kerry's contribution...a goose egg...excellent flavour, but probably too much at one sitting unless you are a true trencherman (and I have been digging trenches these last three days!)

In the centre is the turkey egg from Keith...don't ask why there is still a turkey around at this time of year...just look into its eyes and call it 'Lucky'! Again, great flavour and probably the ideal egg if you can do two at  a sitting.

And finally Keith's beautiful free range chicken egg. A classic.

Thanks to Delia for hints on cooking...and thanks for good neighbours!


Monday, 17 May 2010


ECSTASY....Cornish Pirates 23 - 14 Munster

Tries: Winn, McAtee

Cons: Bentley 2
Pens: Bentley 2

Try: Barnes

Pens: Cusack 3


Post-match and post several pints of St Austell's finest, standing in the concrete bunker of a windowless and airless hell-hole, known locally as the Camborne Recreation Ground Gentlemens Conveniences, gazing wistfully at the Cornish equivalent of the River Styx flowing past my boots, when the door bursts open and in marches the Falmouth Marine Band. I love military music, I love the pomp and ceremony, the uniforms, the gleaming instruments....but I can do without it as an accompaniment to my personal functions. I have issues on three levels...half of them don't come from Falmouth, none of them are Marines and they should be band (sic) least from the inner sanctums of a gentleman's toilette. Kilts and kazoos are not an excuse for prostate terrorism...bladders that had given their all for 80 minutes of big match tension and excitement were suddenly traumatised mid-flow at the spectacle of 30 Cornish tartans being lifted in unison...Question is, how does the banging of their tin can drums continue, when it would appear that all hands are otherwise engaged...answers on a post card to the male urinary ward of Treliske hospital...

'Lets keep it in the ball park lads!'

Sunday, 16 May 2010


No sense out of me for the next few days if we win....!


Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Mr Gilbert, Mr Sullivan...a song if you please!

When all night long a chap remains
On sentry-go, to chase monotony
He exercises of his brains,
That is, assuming that he's got any.
Though never nurtured in the lap
Of luxury, yet I admonish you,
I am an intellectual chap,
And think of things that would astonish you.
I often think it's comical – Fal, lal, la!
How Nature always does contrive – Fal, lal, la!
That every boy and every gal
That’s born into the world alive
Is either a little Liberal
Or else a little Conservative!
Fal, lal, la!

When in that House M.P.'s divide,
If they’ve a brain and cerebellum, too,
They’ve got to leave that brain outside,
And vote just as their leaders tell 'em to.
But then the prospect of a lot
Of dull M. P.’s in close proximity,
All thinking for themselves, is what
No man can face with equanimity.
Then let’s rejoice with loud Fal la – Fal la la!
That Nature always does contrive – Fal lal la!
That every boy and every gal
That’s born into the world alive
Is either a little Liberal
Or else a little Conservative!
Fal lal la!

(and here's the tune for those of you that are unfamiliar MIDI File )



So...we had a General Election.

If you lived in the St Ives constituency, you might have been tempted to vote me a bluff old traditionalist, but if you are a candidate and don't live in the constituency (but you promise to move here if you win), you don't get the cross.

So we end up with the same old, same old, local boy in a yellow cardigan makes good (with a massively reduced majority)...and surely that's the end of it. You did your bit, your conscience is clear.

Surprise, surprise, the new blue suits fail to make the grade...even worse, the boy in a yellow cardigan is now talking to the new blue suits about cosying up and making a little political capital.

However, on the upside, Cornwall, which now has 3 cardigan boys and 3 new blue suits in the house, will at least have a voice in Government you would think.

Spanner comes flying across the room in the shape of an honorable man in a red tie saying 'in the best interests of everybody...I resign'. Well, he is an honorable man, but he did oversee the candidacy of a non-resident in this constituency which was a little patronising to say the probably best he goes.

Well blow me...yellow cardigans now decide that they go rather well with red ties...particularly if they can rearrange the wardrobe so that there are more cardigans and less suits and ties.

I suspect, like the rest of the electorate, we weren't given a proper choice, we didn't 'speak' with one voice as so many pundits allude to, we were just short changed as usual and confusion is the outcome. We are sartorially challenged! dream wardrobe.

Anything that doesn't involve - Michael Gove.
Prime Minister - Alan Johnson.
Anything that doesn't involve - Peter Mandelson.
Chancellor - Vince Cable (can he walk the talk?)
Education - David Laws...but not Michael Gove!
Home Secretary - Yvette Cooper
Justice - Jack Straw
Health - either of the Milliband Twins (Health is where you learn the importance of compassion, humility and service)
FCO - Nick Clegg (he probably needs to be out of the country for his own safety until the dust settles)
Sport, Culture , Media and TOURISM - Ed Balls (he would also have responsibility for non-ball sports too)
Defence - Anybody who has actually been in the military and understands the simple, unaccountable, un-businesslike levels on which the MOD operates...and wants to change them
Business - Gerry Robinson (somebody who actually knows what they are talking about)
Transport - Andrew Adonis (a real train man)
Leader of the House - Harriet Harmann
Anything that doesn't involve - George Osborne
Deputy Prime Minister - David Cameron (it might's about openess and consensus...let him have a seat at cabinet and see all the numbers and the argument)
Speaker - Chris Grayling (a good man in a blue suit)

So, that is my wardrobe of a cabinet...what's yours? I'm only asking, you don't actually get to choose! You've got to wait for a General Election for that.



As covered in an earlier post (A Real African Queen), fund raisers from the Chaucy Maples charity over-nighted with us on their way to John O'Groats.

A fine collection of two-wheeled extravaganza.

Part of the convoy included this classic Morris Traveller.

We used to have one just like all goes in there somehow.

The crew prepare to strip down their kit into 3,481 parts and carry it on their heads to Scotland...

...and when it gets there, it will look something like this!


Saturday, 8 May 2010


An earlier post of mine rubbished a trite attempt to compare the emissions from the unpronouncable volcano in Iceland to the CO2 saved by a non-flying it would seem stupid to set up this blog for potential ridicule by continuing the debate with this contribution from Christian let's do it.

...don't know where he got the numbers from...but I do know that the big black scary bit on the left just comes from using 'stuff', so the answer to all the big questions (asked and un-asked) must be use less 'stuff'!

So what are we doing about that at Lower Treave. Well, this morning I received the water bill and this afternoon I am installing self-closing taps. Just another example of the effect that big scary numbers have on me!

Talking of numbers, here are yesterdays graphs from the solar system:


You probably can't see it too well...because I am not as iTalented as Mr Guthier but, following a fairly murky day, with a couple of bright spells, one mid-morning, one mid-afternoon, we got some free 'stuff'...namely hot time you're down just ask me and I can bore you for hours.... about 'stuff'!


Learnin' the Blues, Red Sails in the Sunset, Yellow Submarine...

No, not a comment on the state of the current political situation...but just some of the tunes you might hear next Saturday night at The Old Success, Sennen Cove.

Join us to hear Paul Simmons in a top night of live music Saturday, 15 May 2010 at the Old Success, in the bay where Paul...and the dolphins play!

Please, no politics! Am I the only one that thinks David Dimbleby has come to live in our sitting room?


Wednesday, 5 May 2010


Spent a couple of days with our chums from CoaST last week...usual stuff...putting the world to rights over a big cream cake (Ambassador, you spoil us!) and several pints of 'Doom'...or was it Stoggs...its all a bit hazy!

Best part of the trip for me was spending some time with SAS on a beach clean at Mawgan Porth. On the face of it, the beach looked in pretty good shape, but when you took a close look, there were just millions of tiny particles of plastic, slowly breaking into even smaller bits and generally going nowhere unless somebody put it in a bag!

Solution...try not to let it get there in the first place...and if it does get there, name and shame the offender. I've worked with various members of the SAS in my time...these guys are the toughest...don't allow your stuff to pollute the beaches or you may be getting the call!


Tuesday, 4 May 2010


Moored on Lake Malawi is the steamer Chauncy Maples. Built in Glasgow in 1898, she is the oldest ship in Africa still afloat.

The 150-ton steamship was commissioned in 1898 by the British Universities' Mission to Central Africa. Designed by Henry Brunel, the son of Isambard Kingdom Brunel, she was built in Glasgow by Alley & McClellan, at a cost of £9,000. She was then disassembled into 3,481 parts.

The ship's 'Abbott' boiler was built in Newark, Nottinghamshire, and weighed 11 tons. It was transported in one piece on a special carriage fitted with traction engine wheels and shipped to Portuguese East Africa.

The boiler was towed on a barge up the Zambezi River and then hauled overland by 450 Ngoni tribesmen for 64 miles. Up steep hills and across river beds, they averaged three miles a day. The other parts of the ship were carried on the heads of men and women.

Unfortunately, when the parts of the hull were galvanised in Glasgow, the parts numbering system was hidden, so the engineers in Malawi had to work out a huge jig-saw to re-assemble the ship. In 1901, two years after leaving Britain, the Chauncy Maples was successfully reassembled and launched on Lake Nyasa (now Malawi). She had three purposes: a missionary school; an emergency refuge from Arab slave traders; and a hospital ship.

During the First World War she was commandeered to serve as a troop carrier and naval gunboat. After the Universities Mission to Central Africa sold her to the Malawi government in 1953, she became a passenger and cargo vessel.

During her lifetime the Chauncy Maples has had several renovations, the most recent in 1967 when she was refitted as a passenger and cargo vessel, with accommodation for a crew of ten.

The Chauncy Maples was a hospital ship but she has not sailed for a decade. She is owned by the Government of Malawi, which plans to renovate her as a floating clinic.

Lake-side villagers will receive free treatment for common diseases, maternity care, simple operations, dentistry, immunisation for their babies, family planning and information on hygiene and safe sex.

She is constructed with a vertical stem, raked stern, raised forecastle and poop deck aft, complete main deck, boat deck and split level aft deck. Currently there is a large cargo hold on the foredeck, which will contain refrigerators for vaccines. She has a single propeller plant, single rudder, working cargo winch and working capstan. The two lifeboats used for moving passengers and cargo from open shores, are missing. The davits are currently abeam, but will be moved to the bow.

The ship was originally equipped with a steam engine, fuelled by wood collected from the lake shore. In 1967 this was replaced with an in-line Crossley diesel engine fitted with a reduction gear and a fixed propeller plant. Although this engine is still in the vessel, it no longer meets modern environmental requirements. It will be replaced with a more efficient CAT 3406C DITA diesel engine, rated 346bkw @ 2100rpm, which can run on fuel with a jatropha bio-diesel admixture.

The fuel used to run the Chauncy Maples' diesel engine will contain a proportion of bio-diesel made from jatropha – a non-edible tropical plant growing in Malawi. This will also create employment and reduce fossil-fuel imports.

A group of Chauncy Maples fund-raising supporters will be with us on the evening of Sunday 9th May and will start their Lands End to John o’Groats drive/ride the following day. They are doing this for the Chauncy Maples, with the sole intention of restoring the ship to act as a floating clinic going up and down the lake serving the local communities which currently have no medical support.

More information on how you could help them here


Sunday, 2 May 2010


Gold and silver...a carpet of daisies and dandelions on the camping fields.

A sycamore bursts into leaf.

The gorse has been splendid this year providing an ever-present splash of colour on greyer days.

The formal beds are very 'blousy' at this time...they'd hate this at Chelsea!

The Gunnera Manicata, native to the Serra do Mar mountains of southeastern Brazil, wakes from its winter slumbers to find it has moved to Cornwall. This will grow almost 20 feet in the season and can be found by the small spring in the corner of the park.

A Green-veined White enjoys a drink.



This group of jolly campers enjoying a bright and breezy breakfast in the sunshine this morning. They are friends from all around the UK and have met up in Cornwall for this Bank Holiday.

Today they are off to visit St Michaels Mount...and will have to cross the low-tide causeway to get there. Don't forget, we always have a tide timetable in reception so that you can plan your day around the certainly won't be changing any of its plans for you!

Have a great Bank don't have to be mad to camp fact you'd be nuts not to!


Had our first night of the season at the theatre this year with a splendid collection of favourites from the New Cornwall Opera.

The weather was beautiful until the last couple of numbers when a very light sprinkle of rain just topped off that never to be missed Minack experience. Hot chocolate, damp legs, great theatre!

And the rest of the season looks like this...