5. Sep, 2020


SATURDAY 5-09-20

Today we moved on from the Pinewoods Caravan Park & Leper Colony bound for a campsite only about 13 miles further down the road. My thinking behind our new location was that it was considerably cheaper, just twenty-two pounds a night and accepted adults only.

We cleared Wells, having done a bit of shopping at about 11:10, leaving us with fifty minutes to kill before we arrived at our new destination. Due to the A149 coastal road being narrow and twisting, especially through Stiffkey and Cley, much of that fifty minutes was used up just making our way there. I have to say that we won't bother coming this way again with the motorhome. This will be our first and last visit to the North Norfolk Coast.

Dead on 12:00 we pulled in to Foxhills campsite www.foxhillscamping.co.uk  (GPS: N52.941870° E1.131327°). It's a nice little site right next to The Muckleburgh Collection. Problem is it slopes in all directions. We are using our own bathroom facilities rather than those provided by campsites for our own peace of mind, but that relies on the vehicle being level, or slightly back-end down to allow water from the shower tray to drain away properly to the grey water tank at the back. Having tried various permutations we had to settle for an odd parking space well forward on our pitch.

So here's a bit about where we are:

Weybourne is a fishing resort situated in the Norfolk Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The village straddles the A149 coast road and is three miles west of Sheringham and close to the historic market town of Holt. The village population is less than 600 and consists largely of local Norfolk residents, retirees and visitors who come to enjoy delightful old brick and flint cottage rentals, camping or caravanning, or to enjoy a Hotel or Bed & Breakfast holiday.

Weybourne is mentioned in the Doomsday Book and in that survey it is called Wabrunna. There are remains of an old Augustinian priory founded around 1200 AD on the site of a simpler Saxon church. Since this village is a designated conservation area, there are many fine examples of Norfolk brick and flint cottages to see dating from the 17th century, through to modern replicas. 

The village is surrounded by well-ordered arable fields, woodland and heathland. The area is excellent for walking, enjoying the countryside and coast. There are opportunities to see wildlife, sea-fishing on Weybourne Beach and bird-watching are very popular.

Weybourne Station, in typical rural railway fashion around a mile from the village it serves, is the middle station on the heritage Poppy Line from Sheringham to Holt.  Much bigger than the usual country station, it was built in anticipation of the village’s development as a Poppyland resort; and the 7-storey Springs Hotel was built on the other side of the road bridge. The development never happened, and the hotel was demolished at the start of World War II in case enemy forces used it as a landmark.  But the station was very busy during that war, handling troop movements to and from the camp that now houses The Muckleburgh Collection of military artefacts: it had a stationmaster, two signalmen and three porters.  Today the station sees steam and vintage diesel trains on the scenic Poppy Line along the coast to Sheringham and up through the heathlands to Holt, running every 45 minutes in the summer.  All day hop-on, hop-off Rover tickets let you explore the area, and dogs and cycles are happily carried.  There is limited car parking at the station. 

After getting set up we had a walk down to the village, risking life and limb as the road is narrow and there are no paths for pedestrians. It's only a small community with just one shop. Being keen to support such small shops I bought a couple of Eccles cakes which cost me over three pounds. To top it all, one of them was over-cooked and burnt right across the bottom.

Once back at the campsite we decided to take a walk down towards the Muckleburgh Military Collection.

Situated at former Royal Artillery Anti-Aircraft training camp at Weybourne on the North Norfolk coast The Muckleburgh Military Collection https://www.muckleburgh.co.uk/ , opened in 1988, is the UK's largest privately owned military museum, boasting over 120 tanks, guns and vehicles in addition to thousands of other items, even missiles and military aircraft. The vehicles on display have come from far and wide; Russia, Norway, Italy, Czechoslovakia, Belgium, Holland, Eire, Syria, Kuwait, Israel, the Falkland Islands, the United States and Iraq. Most of The Collection's vehicles have undergone restoration to ensure they are kept in working order. Other fine exhibits include historic memorabilia from The Suffolk and Norfolk Yeomanry, RAF Reconnaissance, Air Sea Rescue and Marine Craft, and a unique collection of naval and civilian ship models. There is a Restaurant and Shop and visitors have the opportunity of seeing a tank demonstration and of enjoying a bumpy coastal ride in an American Gama Goat personnel carrier. A children’s play area and picnic site give all members of the family an exciting day out.

I think the blurb bigs it up a bit. I understand most exhibits are in the sheds, but what could be seen behind the fence bordered on scrap metal. Never mind, I have no intention of visiting the museum, much to the relief of The Chef.

This evening we dined on ribs, chips and salad which I washed down with a few glasses of liquid grapes.

Tomorrow we intend to walk down to the beach which is about thirty minutes away, and go for a nice long walk down there.