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Following the successful 2012 get together in the New Forest, this year’s event was held in North Norfolk. Twelve Trikings made the journey to the Grove Guest House in Cromer with distances travelled by people varying from as far away as Germany on the one hand to Sheringham on the other! Having decided to take on the responsibility for organising this year’s event, I spent the weeks leading up to the weekend looking anxiously at the weather forecast which indicated that the weekend would be cold, windy and wet, as it had been throughout the Spring. Paul and Axel did indeed get a little wet on the Thursday whilst driving on the continent. Much to my surprise however everyone assembled at the Grove during Friday, having experienced a dry run, with the exception of Alan and Nicki who insisted in arriving during a heavy downpour!
Friday evening was spent at our local Tennis club where a cold buffet had been laid on by Anne and myself, with the assistance of a couple of our tennis friends. On reflection the fare should have been hot soup instead of cold cuts but once we discovered how to turn the heating on all went well. Alan and Nicki were presented with a cake to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the Triking marque and this was soon demolished by the present company.
During the evening, reports were coming through via peoples’ smart phones that the weather forecast for Saturday was for dry weather after 9 am. Bearing in mind the day’s programme was to start at 10 am we all started to hope that the forecast was correct.
Saturday dawned overcast but dry! After a leisurely breakfast we all donned cold weather gear and fired up the 12 cars that were parked on the Grove’s drive. Dick and Myra had arrived in a four wheeled vehicle, due to their proper car not quite being on the road yet. Paul and Axel therefore kindly acted as chauffeurs so that they could gain the full Triking experience for the day.
Our first stop was Weybourne station which houses the engine sheds for the North Norfolk Steam Railway. We drove in convoy from Cromer to Weybourne with just one stop to allow Nigel to fill up with petrol at the wrong garage! We arrived at Weybourne where we were able to park in front of the old station building for a photo opportunity. There followed an informative visit around the engine sheds where all the locomotives and rolling stock are maintained or, in some cases, fully restored from wrecks. It was interesting to see engineering on a larger scale that we are normally used to. I believe that even the ladies present were impressed and not too bored!
We waved goodbye to Weybourne, and some curious steam enthusiasts, and drove through the Norfolk countryside to Blickling Hall: the premier National Trust property in Norfolk. On the way we drove through the market town of Holt where we made quite a spectacle passing through the market place. At Blickling we were able to park together in the walled garden and were generously provided with free access to the Hall for those non-members of the National Trust. Following a couple of hours spent visiting the Hall, its grounds and the café, it was time to reassemble and drive to Sheringham.
The original planned route was to take a meandering drive through a number of the picturesque villages which make up this part of North Norfolk. Unfortunately having tested the route on two separate occasions and got lost on both, it was decided to take a more direct route to the seaside resort! We arrived in Sheringham and drove down the main thoroughfare to the delight/confusion/astonishment of the Saturday shoppers! The aim was to park in the centre of the town on a very small petrol station forecourt so that we could visit the Mo museum. Bearing in mind Sheringham is a very small town, and everyone had detailed route plans, two cars still managed to circumnavigate the town three times before they found the rest of the cars already assembled and ready to move off to the Museum!
The Mo museum houses three of the former Sheringham lifeboats with the oldest being a rowing/sailing boat. Other exhibits detail how the town used to be in the past, together with an insight of how the local fishermen lived and the hardships they endured to provide crabs and lobsters for the local population and for sale in the London markets.
After the Mo visit everyone was let loose on the town to either sample the scones and tea or ice creams or to take a gentle wander around the High Street. We reassembled back at the cars and made the short journey back to Cromer and the Grove Guest House.
Prior to the evening meal at the Grove there was much “show and tell” going on in the car park with everyone investigating various modifications that had been made to cars by their owner. Lots of notes and photos were taken so we expect everyone to be busy over the next winter installing the various changes and additions.
Dinner was a long and noisy affair, as can be imagined, which could have been even longer if it had not been for the foresight to bring along a list of who had ordered what from the menu! Everyone eventually retired having had an entertaining, and more to the point, a dry day.
Sunday morning greeted bleary eyes with bright sunshine and clear blue skies. After breakfast we waved goodbye to a number of friends who needed to leave reasonably early. The rest of us continued with the planned walk along the cliffs to Overstrand where we all had a well earned drink before we walked back to Cromer along the sand. The weather turned so warm that coats were actually removed and carried. One of our party even appeared to have caught the sun quite badly. A rare occurrence indeed for this year!
On return to the Grove we all said our goodbyes and went our various ways agreeing to meet up again next year.
All that now is needed is for someone to take up the batten and to commit to organising the event. Perhaps a different area of the UK could be the venue so that we all might have the pleasure of seeing different countryside and activities. The only advice I would give to anyone who would like the challenge is to start early and find suitable accommodation first; the rest of the organising then is very simple. If it helps I am always available to assist in any way that I can.
24 May 2013