About Me

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Hi! I'm Eunice and I live in Bolton, Lancashire, with my two dogs Sophie and Sugar and an assortment of cats - well it used to be Sophie and Sugar, now it's Sophie and Poppie. I first began camping back in 1997 when my then partner took me to Anglesey for my birthday weekend. We slept in the back of the car - a hatchback - using the cushions off the settee at home as a mattress, and cooked and brewed up on a single burner camping stove. The site was good, the views were great, the weather fantastic and I was completely hooked. Following that weekend we got a two-man tent and some proper accessories and returned to Anglesey two weeks later, then over time we progressed to a three-man tent followed by an old trailer tent, then a new trailer tent, a campervan and finally a caravan. When my partner decided that the grass was greener on the other side of the street - literally - in April 2009 and I suddenly found myself alone after fifteen years, I decided there was no way I was going to give up camping and caravanning if I could cope on my own. This blog is the story of my travels, trials and tribulations since becoming a solo camper - I hope you like it

Sunday June 8th 2014 - Llynnon Mill & Melin Howell

After the previous day's rain I woke to sunshine, blue sky and fluffy white clouds, perfect for a bit more photography. A dog walk, a very leisurely breakfast and a few essential chores took me up to mid morning, then making sure that this time I had my spare camera batteries I set out on my latest mission. My quest this time was to find and photograph an old water mill situated somewhere in the back of beyond, but my first stop was the car boot sale on the showground. 

As usual there were no mice to be found to add to my collection and the only thing I bought, for the very 'extravagant' sum of 50p, was a square canvas print of a cute stripey kitten, which would nicely fill a blank piece of wall back home. As I was paying for it the stall holder said it was the last one of a set of three, someone else had bought the other two - which personally I thought was rather pointless. Why buy two and leave the other one? Maybe the other person didn't like that one, but if I'd been the stall holder the prints would have been sold as a full set or not at all. It was a shame I hadn't got there first, I would certainly have had all three.

From the showground I headed up the A5, and a few miles round the country lanes took me to Llynnon Mill. Having been there only the year before last I had no real reason to go again, but the directions to the old water mill were taken from there and as the book said the place was difficult to find I thought I may as well use that as my starting point. Plus my previous photos of Llynnon Mill had been taken on a rather cloudy day so at least I could now get a couple with the blue sky and sunshine.

From Llynnon Mill I followed the book's directions exactly, but when I got to the place where I was supposed to be able to see the old water mill across the fields I could see absolutely nothing. Thinking I hadn't gone far enough I drove another half a mile or so through a small village which consisted of just a couple of dozen houses and a chapel, but when the road started taking me in what I absolutely knew was the wrong direction I turned round and headed back to where I'd just stopped. The book was right - the old water mill was difficult to find. 

There was a farmhouse bed-and-breakfast place just across the lane so I called there to ask and the young woman I saw was very helpful; it seemed that I hadn't gone far enough, so I had to go back through the village, turn left and follow the narrow lane down to the bottom. So I did - and wondered where the hell this was taking me. If I'd thought the road up the side of the hill near Llangollen at Easter was narrow then this lane was narrower still, and if I hadn't had the van windows closed I would have been poked in the eye several times by the foliage from the hedgerows. And to call it a lane was, to my mind, a bit of a misnomer - it looked more like a private track, and I wouldn't have been surprised if I'd ended up in someone's garden.

As I got towards the bottom of the lane I rounded a bend and came across a house set back on the left just ahead - it looked like my fears were about to be realised and I would be invading the privacy of whoever lived there. However, the lane actually went past the garden, and round another bend and just over a narrow stone bridge I finally came to the old mill. It was derelict, with rotten window frames and bits of tatty curtains hanging behind the broken panes; round the back where the old water wheel was it didn't look particularly pretty, but the front looked quite attractive. Unfortunately I couldn't get an exact replica of the photo in the book as someone had parked a farm trailer on the grass verge at one side, which would have been in the shot, but I did manage to get a couple of good photos of my own from a different angle.

By the time I'd finished wandering round I was feeling rather peckish so it was time to think about getting a cheeseburger from Pete's burger bar up at Penrhos. I had no idea where the lane went to but as it was now much wider than at the other side of the bridge I decided that following it was preferable to going back the way I'd come. It proved to be a good decision as I hadn't gone very far when I reached a T junction and realised that I was now on the road which took me back past Llynnon Mill. That would do for me, I knew where I was, and quarter of an hour later I was turning into the car park at Penrhos. 

As usual my cheeseburger and coffee were excellent, and after taking the dogs for a short walk along the shoreline I decided that instead of going on to somewhere else I would call at the Stermat store for a look round then head for the A55 and make my way back to the camp site. Calling in at Stermat turned out to be a good move too, as I found a 25-metre hook-up extension cable for just less than £20 - bargain! I didn't actually need one as I already have one but it was the sort of thing which may very well come in handy some time and at that price it was too good to miss, so I handed over my cash and walked out of the store a very happy bunny.

Back at the tent I spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing with my book then later on took the dogs down to the beach for a walk in the evening sunshine. It was breezy but very pleasant and we stayed down there until the sun had completely disappeared. By the time we'd got back to the tent the daylight was starting to fade so with no reason to go out again I made a brew and settled in for the night, with fingers crossed that my final full day would be a good one.