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They also have a motorhome, their pride and joy it seems, which is also not supposed to be at their home – despite it being a ‘part time’ vehicle and they living literally minutes away from the no-charge zone, their local council wants them to pay close to £100 a day to be allowed to have it in their garden!  No common sense approach from the government as usual – despite the fact that storing the camper five miles down the road means they need to drive there and back every time they want to do anything to do with the camper, thus creating even more emissions, apparently no special dispensations are ever granted.  So you can pay your £100 a day penalty to have your camper on the drive, sitting there quietly creating no emissions at all, or you can not pay the £100 a day and find a friend locally who has a big enough driveway to put it on, and rack up your CO2 emissions driving short hops to do what you need to do when you need to go to the camper.  Typical bloody daft government.

Also met Lois Pryce and her hubby Austin Vince - both mad as hatters!  Chatted to her about writing books and she warned that although its a massive sense of achievement to get something published and being bought by complete strangers, its never going to make you a millionaire!  Still, thinking about giving it a go though.

Had some earplug moulds taken.  Was planning on getting some for sleeping in, as well as wearing when we’re having long driving days on Moglet – open windows and hours of cruising along means my ears are ringing by the time we stop, which cant be good. As luck would have it, Lyn and Adrian had bought a bunch of raffle tickets (not sure who from, we never saw anyone??) and he won a set of custom earplugs from the guys here at the show, and he donated the win to me! J  Very lovely of him, saved me £65, which is not to be sniffed at.  We took lots of photos with them over the weekend, mostly of sitting round the campfire drinking wine, and we parted company after swapping details and giving them a couple of slices of our wedding cake – seemed the least we could do for such nice people who’d been so complimentary about our wedding photos! J

HUBB wise its been a much better weekend than I expected.  The weather has been very kind, a tiny little rain shower for about 3minutes last night but other than that its been a good mix of sunshine and fluffy clouds, up into the high twenties every day.  The organisers have missed a few tricks I though though, although who really knows what goes on behind the scenes and what limitations were placed on them due to licensing laws etc.  Everyone I spoke to was surprised at the minimal number of vendor stands, and especially the fact that there was nothing to eat or drink for sale – although that’s possibly to do with the fact that the event was held in the grounds of Lumb Farm and they supply food and drink in their restaurant.  Even so, a few more ways to be relieved of my pennies wouldn't have been amiss – it’s a reasonably blokey affair but still a high minority percentage of women attending, and as far as I could tell there was absolutely nothing for sale that wasn’t specifically adventure motorbike related – so no clothing, hardly any books, like I said before no food or drink, no ice cream van, and amazingly for a bike event, no hog roast!  The biggest surprise when it came to merchandising though was that the t-shirts that were printed up for the event (mostly sold beforehand with ‘leftovers’ available through the weekend) didnt mention the fact it was the 10th anniversary, or even the year its held.  I think they really missed a trick there – if there’d just been 10th anniversary edition versions of the HUBB stickers for example, I reckon pretty much everyone here would have bought one.  And I don’t even think its too late – if they modified the t-shirts and stickers now and sent out a mailing to all attendees and offered them after the event, I think there’d be a good take up rate.  Something to mention on the feedback form, I think...

The biggest disappointment for me though was the ‘us and them’ situation that we felt was a bit in evidence as camper people rather than bikers.  I appreciate that the HUBB was originally set up for adventure motorcycling, but its grown so much since then.  Many of the forums will have people chatting about plans for travel that are on more than two wheels, so if the forum itself represents a larger group, why not the weekender?  

24-27 June

We’ve both been at the HUBB annual weekender event for the last few days, the 10th one they’ve held.  Met some lovely people from all walks of life.  Spent much of the weekend with Lyn and her husband Adrian, a retired fireman.  They came in a Landy with a rooftent, although they’re looking to sell it before 2012 when the emissions charging zone that they live in means they’d have to pay an extortionate amount to be able to keep it on their driveway.

Couple that with the fact that the campers and 4x4’s were not allowed in the same area as the tents, and we’re in our own little area round the back of the car park.  The HUBB has come a long way in 10 years and I look forward to seeing where it gets to in the future!  And if they don’t embrace us adventurous people who choose to travel on more than 2 wheels, maybe someone else will set up a website instead J