Thursday, 2 December 2010

Cambridge - a total surprise

Late July/early August saw me heading to Ashridge Farm Caravan Club Site in Baldock, which is kind of on the A1 between Stevenage and Peterborough.

Airstream Ashridge Farm

It's a wonderfully quiet and relaxing site, almost like being in someone's back garden. Plenty of good walks too, although my favourite aspect was being able to wander into the pretty village of Ashwell.

From there, after a weekend chez Keith and Anne at Commons Wood (out of course, but everywhere else was booked and it's always nice to visit a site where the wardens are so welcoming) it was time to head to Cherry Hinton Caravan Club Site in Cambridge. This site had only just re-opened after some extensive work, and very smart it all looked too.

Cambridge really took me by surprise. Granted, I had a local guide in the form of my friend Mr Perks, but I was taken aback by how agreeable a place I found it.

One of the things that I loved the most about the city and about the site is how accessible everything is by pushbike. I didn't use my car the whole time I was there.

On the first evening, I cycled into town with Mr P to visit some of the traditional and friendly hostelries which was a real treat in itself. Also time for a little night photography:


Another time Mr Perks and his good missus put their kids in their respective trailers and tag-alongs and we all cycled out to The Orchard tearoom at Grantchester to have a cream tea in the dappled shade of the apple trees... a quintessentially English summer's afternoon, and as perfect as it sounds.

Interestingly, my experience of the tourist information people in Cambridge wasn't altogether positive. In fact, it was downright appalling. This is one thing that I find in this job. If you want help and resources on somewhere really popular like Cambridge, forget it. But go somewhere a little quirky like East Lincolnshire or Swanage, and the tourist people will bend over backwards to help and facilitate your trip.

But you only need to step out of the tourist office and into the city to instantly forget a bad experience and not let it put you off such a wonderful, wonderful city. I really, really like it.


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