For me living on the move comes naturally – its what I do. Tripping from windsurf event to windsurf event and living out of your mobile home is a part of that lifestyle. So when in September 2014 Swift Group took me on as one of their ambassadors to demonstrate how their caravans and motorhomes can be used ‘in the field’ it felt like a bit of an adventure.
After a visit to Swift’s factory at Cottingham to meet the people I would be working with it became apparent that this is no ‘tin pot’ organisation. The factory spans acres and acres and rivals any car manufacturer for its clean, efficient, almost Germanic approach to building what it makes. It was there that Tom Anderton set out to me what I would be doing in 2015. ‘Challenge Neil Greentree’ was to be my banner. Basically Swift Group customers were to set me challenges I must complete whilst using a Swift motorhome. They could be anything from a physical challenge to a cooking challenge. So my Challenges were to tour Kent in a Swift Rio 520 in June and then in September embark on an International tour visiting 5 places of interest related to World War II In a Swift Bessecarr 696.
So in June Myself, my wife Sara and her twin sister Sallie set of for Kent in the Swift Rio 520. It was compact but sported the coolest rear opening rear door I’ve ever seen. It actually was really useful too. For 5 days we whizzed around Kent in this excellently versatile mini motorhome. Its 17ft frame meant it could go anywhere and its pace on the road was car like. Its electric rear bed proved an excellent feature although after adding bedding the roof height became an issue under the bed assembly. We painted the motorhome (which I won….yeah!), visited the tunnels in Margate, had a picnic at The Spitfire Museum, and paddleboardeing in Worthing. The most surprising thing for me about the Swift Rio 520 the way it always drew a crowd wherever it went. Once you opened that fantastic rear door people would come up to us just to chat about the motorhome and motorhoming – it was almost like you had invited them into your world!.The Rio was an exceptional motorhome for us really galvanising just how versatile and mobile this pastime can be. So it was with a degree of reluctance I handed back the Swift Rio 520 as we had all grown quite attached to this pocket sized explorer.
Look out tomorrow for part 2 where we embark on, what was probably the most harrowing yet enlightening tour of my life.