Why I needed to go back to Skegness

Why I needed to go back to Skegness

Eyup everyone, if you watched our Skegness video from last week you will have seen that we asked some friendly bikers if they could recommend a place to get some fish & chips. Fortunately they had just finished lunch and told us that they’d just had fish & chips that were ‘to die for’!

The place they recommended was a pub called ‘The Jolly Fisherman’. Now this caused a dilemma for us as we don’t usually enjoy fish and chips from pubs, whilst they can be very nice we just don’t think that they are the same as from the chip shop. After much pondering we decided to go to The Trawlers Catch, which if you know it is the large pirate themed chippy blasting out noise much to the annoyance of nearby traders. This turned out to be a huge mistake as we did not enjoy them at all (see the video for the full review).

We immediately regretted it. If only we had listened to the advice from the bikers!

The comments to the video were full with people saying how we should have taken the bikers advice and gone to the pub. It played on my mind for the days following, I needed to do something about it, so being the intrepid explorer I headed back to Skegness late on Tuesday evening.

I arrived just before 11 pm and found a park up for the night. Some van lifers (online) had recommended the car park in front of the pier as motorhomes and vans are permitted over night and its also free between 6 pm and 8 am. If only I had given more consideration to the 24 hr McDonalds close by! It seemed fairly quiet when I’d arrived but by around 1.30 am I was abruptly woken by loud music from cars and shouting from pesky young people!! I jumped back in the cab and found the nearest street where I could park without bother.

I did eventually get back to sleep and had a lay in until around 8.30 am. Feeling all refreshed I had a wander around Skegness and found Skegness Natureland which is a small animal attraction on the main strip. It is primarily a seal sanctuary but also has other animals, fish and some beautiful butterflies. It cost me £11.00 to get in (children £9.00, family ticket £36, under 3’s free). I really enjoyed it, the seals put on a bit of a show, waving at the children, there is a small petting area but the meerkats were rather rude (turning their backs on me when I tried to photograph them). The highlight for me was in the butterfly house when a huge butterfly landed on my hand.

I really enjoyed my visit to Natureland and would recommend it to other nature lovers. It’s not a huge theme park, rather a small, friendly sanctuary away from all the noise of the amusements and rides… also; if it’s a bit nippy, the butterfly house is toasty warm. 😉

Eventually I made it to the Jolly Fisherman for the much anticipated fish & chips, I also even had a cheeky Guinness. The cost was £10.49 for the food and the drink was £4.40.

What was my verdict?

The fish (haddock) was very good. The beer batter was crispy and light and the fish itself was moist and quite thick. The peas were just above average, I like ‘proper’ mushy peas, the traditional type that are soaked overnight. The only let down was the chips as they were basic oven chips and whilst perfectly edible if they had been thicker, home made chips or the triple cooked type this meal would have got a fairly high score from me, as it is, I will give them 6/10.

They were definitely better than Trawlers Catch and served in a less noisy environment but I’m sure there will be superior fish & chips in Skegness, I just need to come back and find them!! 😂

THE VIDEO WILL BE ON YOUTUBE (13/06/2024 at 6.15pm)

Mediterranean Chicken Recipe

Mediterranean Chicken Recipe

We recently had a drive up to the broken road next to Mam Tor in Castleton where Helen cooked an amazing Mediterranean Chicken Meal. We had a wonderful evening, enjoyed a few drinks and enjoyed the stunning views.

Here is the recipe:


4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Garlic cloves as required
Salt & Black Pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
½ cup dry white wine
1 large lemon (juiced)
½ cup chicken broth
1 medium red onion (chopped)
4 small tomatoes (diced)
¼ cup sliced green olives
Chopped Basil as required
Crumbled feta cheese (optional)


Prepare the chicken: Clean and pat dry the chicken breasts. Make three shallow slits on each one.

Season the chicken: Push the garlic garlic into the slits you made. Season the chicken breasts on both sides with salt, pepper and ½ of the dried oregano.

Sear the chicken: In a large cast iron skillet or frying pan, heat the olive oil on medium-high. Sear the chicken on both sides, then add the white wine and reduce by half.

Braise the chicken: Add the lemon juice and chicken broth. Sprinkle the remaining ½ tablespoon of oregano on top and turn the heat to medium. Cover with a lid or foil and cook for 5 to 6 minutes on one side, then turn the chicken over and cook for 5 to 6 additional minutes, or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165°F.

Finish and serve: Remove the lid or foil and top with the chopped onions, tomatoes and olives. Cover again and cook for 3 minutes. Finish with the Basil and Feta Cheese (if using).

We had the chicken with a side order of Roasted Vegetable Cous Cous from Aldi.

Southend-on-Sea vs Clacton-on-Sea Part 1

I visited Southend on Sea & Clacton on Sea for the first time and thought I’d do a side by side comparison as a first timer.
Here is part one of my video, please feel free to comment below.


Rather than using Patreon I have decided to host all my extra vlogs and behind the scenes content here on my own website.
All these videos are free so if you enjoy the content please consider donating here.
It helps me to keep the content free for everyone.

Like Patreon but free

Like Patreon but free

Ok so I think I’ve had a genius idea!

So many van lifers/vloggers and content creators these days are using Patreon as a way of offering extra content to subscribers. It’s something I have thought about a lot and even posted a short video on YouTube about it. After lots of feedback and speaking to Helen, I have decided not to do Patreon as it can come across as a sort of two tier system whereby people who pay money get more content. With the current cost of living crisis that just seems unfair.

It’s been bugging me for weeks now because I know there are lots of followers who would like to see ‘behind the scenes’ and more niche content (the sort of stuff that is too niche to put up on YouTube) but if I were to use Patreon then it would cost people money. Then I have had people message me saying they want to support the channel and would be happy to pay a subscription.

How do I keep everyone happy without creating a two-tier system?

My genius idea is to put all extra vlogs and behind the scenes content on here completely free of charge.

of course those who want to donate can do so knowing that they are helping to pay for the hosting of all the extra vlogs and I can also supplement this by having advertisements on the website too. I think its a win/win situation so will give it a go for a few weeks to see how it works out.

Van Life in Malham, North Yorkshire – Stealth Park and Solo Hike

Van Life in Malham, North Yorkshire – Stealth Park and Solo Hike

Simple mid week van life video with a lovely hike around Malham in North Yorkshire. I visited Malham Cove, Gordale Scar & Janet’s Foss which took around 3.5 hours. Would you be interested in watching extended versions of my videos? I’m considering starting uploaded two versions of my films (regular & long play). I’d be interested to hear what you think.

15. Q&A – Full Time Van Life in a Tiny Van – 3 Weeks In

15. Q&A – Full Time Van Life in a Tiny Van – 3 Weeks In

Following on from my YouTube Q&A video (below) I have decided to add more detail in this blog post. I will update over the next few days as things are pretty busy at the moment.

How much money are you saving by living full time in your van?

I’m saving approximately £1100 per month with the largest bulk coming from not having any rent to pay. My energy bills were £150 per month then there was my Council Tax, water rates, insurance, tv & broadband. My diesel bill has gone up slightly though as I seem to have been doing lots more driving when trying to find stealthy parking spots.

What is your biggest bugbear about van life so far?

I’ve not had any major problems yet but it is very noticeable how much longer simple things take to do, such as cooking breakfast and having a wash. As my van is rather small, everything has to have it’s place and I need to be very methodical when going about everyday tasks.

Another thing that ‘winds me up’ is noise pollution from stupid boy racer car exhausts. I’ve been woken at unearthly hours frequently as they go whizzing past in their Subaru’s or whatever they call them!!

How much did your van build cost?

This is a really difficult question to answer as the process was over several months and I never thought I’d be making a YouTube channel or Blog. I also made quite a few mistakes along the way so probably wasted quite a bit of money. I’ve really racked my brains and gone through all my old Amazon payments etc to try and get a more accurate figure than I gave in the video –

Wall Carpet Lining & Adhesive – £60.00

Sound Deadening Mats – £26.00

Insulation – £60.00

Split Charge Relay Kit – £66.00

115Ah Leisure Battery – £120.00

Electric Switch Panel – £23.00

Electric Cables & Extras – £30.00

Wood – approx. £300.0 (I did waste quite a bit though!)

Tinted Opening Window – £180.00

Flooring – £50.00 (off cut from local carpet shop)

Curtain – £25.00 (on sale in Dunelm)

Flip Up Table Hinges – £12.00

Thermometer – £10.00

LED Lighting – £18.00

Battery Powered Lights – £17.00

Sink – £6.00 (stainless steel bowl from Dunelm)

Waste Plug – £9.50

Waste Pipe – £4.50

300w Inverter – £37.00

Heated Blanket – £35.00

Tube Heater – £27.00

Total – £1110.00

This is substantially less than I said in the video when I was working things out quickly although I did waste rather a bit of money when making mistakes.

N.B – Prices are correct at the time of my van build / Some of the links above are affiliate links (this costs you nothing but I may get a commission if you made a purchase through my link)

How do you find places to park?

My method of finding stealthy parking spaces is evolving all the time. I like to stay on the outskirts of small rural villages parked up along with other vehicles, sort of hiding in ‘plain sight’. I never park directly outside someone’s home as this could raise suspicion, I like to get to my spot late and leave early. I’ve found along the sides of graveyards usually quite good. At the edge of a street by a high wall or hedgerow. Layby’s on the edge of villages with nearby houses are also a favourite of mine.

Fantastic stealth parking spot by a church in a small rural village.
Quiet layby across from a row of terraced houses on the outskirts of a small village. There are usually several cars & vans parked here on an evening.


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