The floor is complete

The floor is complete. It is now all battoned out and covered with 32mm gyrock foam. Around the edges, in the gaps we then used the sort of stuff you use in the attic. The plywood floor has also been screwed back down and we are now ready to do the ceiling. Its started to take shape.

As a reward we all treated ourselves to a meal at The Yarborough Arms

New layout, wordpress and Tim Berners-Lee

Introduced this new layout last night and I think I like it. It always takes a few days before I really know if something clicks but high hopes. One of the nice things about the software I use for fulltiming is that it is totally free. Its called wordpress. It takes a little bit of getting used to but once you have it cracked its great stuff.

In essence you have wordpress itself and then you use a layout – or theme as they are known. This theme is called scarlet and more detail can be found using the link at the bottom called Talking of the web I watched a great program last night called The Virtual Revolution The Great Levelling. It was all about the web and where it came from. It featured Tim Berners-Lee who is known as the inventer of the web. I watched it in HD on the Imac and was totally blown away by the graphics. I am going to download it from the BBC Iplayer do I can play it to Jessica. I am sure at 4 years old she will not understand it but she will love watching it and in a few years time she can watch it again. Her life ahead is going to revolve around the web, as if ours does not now.

Tim Berners-Lee, inventer of the web

If you are interested, and I guess if you are reading this the web is as important to you as it is to me then more info on Tim can be seen on wiki ( see below).  Wikipedia was also featured in the program, another great freeby on the web and something everyone can be involved in. I have just done a search for fulltiming on wiki and guess which site is featured, its us, fantastic.

Today I am off to carry on work on the van. Its freezing outside and the first job of the day was to get the water working – thats on the house not the van. The pipes had decided it was too cold to work. We are hoping to start on the ceiling today but the temperature needs to lift a bit for the adhesives to work. At least we can get the timbers cut, prepared and screwed to the cross members. We also have to sort out the sliding side door as it leaks at present. Its going to be cold.

Fulltiming on wiki

Tim Berner-Lee on wiki

The virtual Revolution on BBC Iplayer


Scarlet theme

Starting the actual work

Our first part a week ago was to strip out all the boarding that came with the van. We wanted to see what was underneath. We are glad we did that because there was a lot of space behind the boards for insulation. We then started building a frame work for the insulation starting with the floor. Its great to actually see it start

Buying Parts

As posted earlier we bought the shower base, wood and cupboard doors from Magnums of Grimsby to the tune of £297. I then picked up a second hand fridge for £10. It only works on gas though so when I saw another on ebay for £90 I snapped it up, meaning a trip to Nottingham. I then purchased windows from a supplier in Bolton. So last Tuesday we went and collected them. Although the windows were a good buy at £450, a saving of about £350 the fridge made me seriously reconsider the idea of buying second hand. The fridge is probably 10 years old. It is three way but will it work and will it be efficient. If it packs a new one will possibly not fit in the same place. SO all our gas and electrical parts are going to be new. When you also take into account it took a whole day and 300 miles to collect its not going to be that much more expensive

The van

This is her, a 2004 Citroen Relay with low mileage, under 50k but with plenty of bumps, sadly. The engine is gorgeous but there is a little bit of turbo noise, maybe a problem, maybe not, we will see. She is in very nice shape and the only real problem is the sliding door, it does not fit that well.

This will become a lovely home complete with rear fixed double bed that lifts up during the day to reveal an office underneath. A lounge will be at the front will convert into another bed at night. Mid ships will be the kitchen and the bathroom, its very exciting.

The birth of the Rothwell Explorer

Work has begun in earnest. Shona has sorted outed out the insurance which was an epic in its self. Its not the easiest thing to do. Our good friend Shane suggested we try his business insurers but they came up with a quote of £1000! It was an interesting discussion though and we picked up a lot of assistance for them. They suggested lots of van convertors just insure as a van, big mistake as in the event of an accident you would not be insured as you are converting a vehicle! We tried Sureterm but they have suddenly taken a dislike to photographers lol. We then found Grant at and he saved the day for us. £200 a year, albeit limited to 5000 miles. The insurance gives us 90 days to turn the van into a motorhome. By this we need to have applied to DVLC for reclassification.

The Van Conversion

We have begun the conversion. Wall boards have been purchased, new from a company called Magnums of Grimsby. We are leaning towards buying second hand gas units. So far a 3 way fridge has been purchased for £90 compared to £500 for a new one. We are looking at carver heaters and wall mounted instant water heaters.

Yesterday we stripped out all the wall boards that were there already so we could get to know what was underneath. Insulation is the first job

The cost of a house

We are really getting cheesed off at the cost of running a house. We were never actually cold in the RV but the cottage takes so much energy to get it pleasant. After elec for the underfloor heating, wood pellets for the central heating and then logs and kindling for the log burner we are running at over £200 per month, which is one heck of a lot. The lure of a return to fulltiming is strong at the moment………


The whole country is gripped and grounded by snow. We have been stopped in our tracks and can hardly leave the valley. Yesterday I got into town to shoot some portraits but got stuck in 3 foot snow drifts on the way back, Shane came out and towed me out. Fortunately it was only 200 yards from his house


wow, its 2010, a new year. We did not post on fulltiming for over a year. Life has got so complex again. We have expanded our business. We now have a studio next to where we are living plus a studio at an indoor market in the town centre, we have had people working for us and suffered when they suffer.

Jessica is doing really well and attends pre school, writes her name, is a fantastic little artist and counts to 20+. She is an excellent story teller and sits there going through a book making a story that fits the pictures.

Shona decided the other day that we were going to become motorhomes again and a deal has been done on a long wheelbas, high top Citroen relay van, now for the conversion. Great, not sure we have a clue what we are doing lol. but we will keep the blog informed