Friday 6th September
At last we are travelling again, albeit for just five weeks. The plan is to try and cover some of the places we’ve missed in the past. Biggest problem I have is trying to remember how to do this blogging thing and how to take and process photos – it’s over a year since I last picked up my camera!
So what have we been doing in the meantime? The last post was towards the end of our assistant stewarding at Almafra for the Camping & Caravanning Club. From Almafra we went straight to assistant stewarding at Costa Blanca Marjal for three months, a rather different experience in many ways. Home for a month then another bit of stewarding, this time in charge but at a very small rally in the Loire Valley and just for a month.
Next thing we know we are lead stewards back at Marjal. 195 units, nearly six months and a huge responsibility. Luckily we managed to get a good team of assistants helping us and most of the ralliers, for most of the time were mostly very happy. So happy that they’ve begged us to come back in November.
We’ve stewarded again in the Loire valley, wandered about in the UK waiting for MOT time and now we are wandering again.
We took the Dover Calais ferry yesterday and made our way to the free aire at Wissant. Number one ticked off my list of places to visit. Before we started our travels we would read the blogs and I kept being attracted to the aire at Wissant (for some reason) and at last we got there. Only 15 places but nearly 30 units parked up while we were there. I met one guy who only ever goes to the Wissant aire, he’s here for five days this time and then off back home! I think this will become our aire of choice for getting on and off the ferry at Calais from now on, closer to the port than Bolougne and far cheaper.
Day two, Friday, and we are off to the Atlantic Wall Museum near Audinghen.
You may ask how we missed this last time, huge lump of concrete with huge bright letters – we were going too fast probably. This is the Batterie Todt, named in honour of Reichsminister Fritz Todt who was responsible for the Atlantic defensive wall as well as many other major building works.
This huge bunker was part of a network of huge guns, all aimed at the UK and capable of firing a 380mm shell over 55km every 10 minutes. This isn’t one of those guns, all the big guns were sold off for scrap soon after the war ended.
This is one of five railway guns that moved about the area. The range was 94 miles, the shell weighed 243kg and could be fired every 15 minutes. London, Brighton and the chippy down our road were all in range.
Total length of the barrel is 25.5m and the shell diameter is 283mm. The whole lot weighs in at 218 tons
The rear of Batterie Todt, the seventh largest Nazi construction of the second world war. Entry was just under €8 each and we spent nearly 2 hours wandering around.
I don’t have many photos of the interior, I was too engrossed in seeing how everything worked but I’ve got photos of both “No Photography Permitted” signs. 🙂
This is taken from the upper deck of the main firing room. The rectangular holes (all used to be open) allowed exhaust gases to vent to the outside. There was a lot to see here, exhibits included reconstructions of the living conditions, flak guns, air crews, rifles and pistols, radios and the normal effects of soldiers living away from home for extended periods.
From the Museum, we made our way over to Saint Quentin. We’re aiming for Germany but taking it easy now. Got caught by a speed camera (second time this year), I’m hoping that the camera thought I was a lorry because the car in front didn’t get flashed Nice aire in St Quentin, €3 per night and loads of space, no photos, I’m still not back in tune with this blogging thing yet.