David Hurst goes for a trip in a Swift Lifestyle 686 Motorhome from Marquis Motorhomes, Lancashire
As the self-appointed driver for my family, and having driven from Lancashire to Cornwall and also to Paris in the last month, when Marquis Motorhomes offered a Swift Lifestyle 686 Motorhome for the weekend, I was feeling a little jaded at the thought of getting behind the wheel for another trip.
Up stepped my wife, all 4ft 9in of her. “I’ll drive” she said.
I hesitated momentarily.
This is a C1 class vehicle, weighing 3,071kg, 6.92m in length and 2.31m wide.
Then I realised how sexist, sizeist and downright rude I was being.
So on Friday we found ourselves at Marquis Motorhomes, Preston.
The staff there couldn’t have been more helpful in explaining everything we needed to know about the vehicle.
Driving instructions and all the exterior and interior workings were shown to us in detail and, after all questions were answered, we set off for the Lake District.
The day before, we had contacted The Camping and Caravanning Club for advice on good sites for Motorhomes in the Windermere area, and they found a site with space right by the lake at Bowness. Braithwaite Fold Camping site has just 66 pitches, a shop, toilet/shower block and a warm welcome. A stone’s throw from the shops, pubs, and boat trips, this is an ideal stop for a weekend break.
My wife found the driving a breeze and loved the cruise control on the journey up the M6.
The roads were relatively straight and wide, but as we came into the narrow and windy streets of Bowness-on-Windermere she reported that she was finding it ‘nifty’.
We even managed to pull up beside a chippy to buy tea.
Despite having an oven, there was no need to use it. The chips were still hot by the time we had parked up, plugged in and opened a bottle of wine.
Within, we had comfortable seating, table and plenty of room to relax.
The evening had chilled a little so, with the heater turned on and the thermal insulation keeping us snug, the bed was made up at the rear.
Again, the ease of making up the bed and its comfort are well thought out, with a large double bed taking no room from the living area. Waking up to the dawn chorus and looking out of the many windows in the rear area to a view of the lake and amazing wildlife around us, a hearty breakfast, cooked on the three hob and grill cooker, was consumed with a feeling of great relaxation. Saturday was spent in the fresh air, on and walking around, the lake.
On return from a four-mile walk, the hot shower was a welcome addition.
The campsite had a lovely clean shower block, but having the facility in your own area is always a plus.
Returning home on the Sunday meant a quick visit to the waste water area and, again, the ease of carrying out these essentials is so simple.
Unplugged and emptied, the journey home was once again carried out by my wife and, as we left the Swift Lifestyle 686 with Marquis and sat back in our own small car, she said: “Well, this feels harder to drive than the motorhome.”