We have thoroughly enjoyed the past 5 years with our T5 and T6 vans. We have been on incredible journeys and visited fabulous places and want to do much more of it while we can. However doing long trips in the past two years we came to recognise the difficulties of travelling is a small van especially in less than perfect weather. That said in fine weather a lot of the problems diminish but new ones of crowded roads and busy camp sites replace them. We came to the conclusion if we are going to carry on travelling and perhaps travel more and out of high season the only possible solution was to go bigger and be more self sufficient. Despite the small size of our vans carrying enough provisions, clothing and equipment for long journeys has never been a problem. We used “Really Useful Boxes” for a lot of things so they were relatively easy to load and unload but there was a drawback – as we tour rather than go somewhere to pitch up for a period of time we were constantly unloading and reloading everything. That was not so bad in good weather but in inclement weather it became a real pain. Additionally access the on board storage, while there is a lot of it, was cramped and makes getting at things uncomfortable. Then there is getting out and about in the bad weather. We don’t mind a bit of rain and cold when we are suitably dressed and we had heating if we needed it. The problem is getting both of us and a wet dog into the van in wet gear, getting it and us dry and then drying the dog. Inevitably everything stays damp. Not having on board facilities wasn’t the end of the world, indeed I have often shunned the idea of lugging our own shit around with us, but in these days of Aires, Stellpatz and Wild Camping we found our selves driven to expensive campsites just for the sake of a wash and the loo. Having our own facilities will solve several issues such as going to the loo in the night, especially in the cold and wet, struggling to find loos while on the road and of course parking up almost wherever we like and still being able to have a wash or even a shower. And while we are both trying hard to deny the raging process it has its inevitabilities. Not blaming the dog but he like us is used to his meal times and stopping to make dinner generally necessitated emptying out the van and putting the roof up so by that measure it became time to stop for the evening regardless. Finding camp sites is not always as easy as one might expect and often we have ended up pitching up late in less than pleasant surroundings just for the sake of stopping. So now we are looking forward to being more self sufficient in facilities and also power that way we can stop where and when we like within reason. We will have storage space that doesn’t mean reorganising everything when we stop and we will have a larger more comfortable living space for longer periods way, to pitch up and relax for longer periods and to be warm and dry hiding from the weather. So now read on and enjoy as we start work on the new van.