Big news folks. Anne’s Vans is closing its doors. We have decided now is the time to retire. It’s been eight wonderful years.

In reality we semi-retired almost ten years ago and decided it would be a cool thing to buy a vintage VW campervan. However neither of us had been in a campervan before so we figured it would make sense to rent one to try out first. We couldn’t find one anywhere so we decided to buy a van and then rent it out when we weren’t using it. Anne’s Vans was born.

The interim eight years has been a fantastic time. We have had many great customers which we would like to thank for the business. Some of you come back year after year and feel like old friends. Iyr vans have been as far as Berlin, Amsterdam and Paris. 

They have been used for corporate photoshoots, by the BBC as their onsite mobile office at the Lincolnshire Show, weddings and honeymoons galore. We have even had proposals of marriage made in them.

Hirers have come from as far afield as Canada and Malta but many of you are from just down the road in Lincoln.

A great as it has been, we would now like to do stuff ourselves during the summer months, the busy time for a campervan business, and have now decided to retire for a second time.

Our vans are currently being serviced and prepared for sale. If you are interested in buying one please do get in touch. They are well looked after. We viewed quite a number of vans in the process of buying ours and we can tell you these are good examples of their kind.

The email address will stay live for some time but when the vans are gone we will close it down.

Both Anne and Tref would like to say thank you again to our wonderful customers and wish you all well.

The photo is of Dave our fantastic mechanic, Anne and Tref taken at the fabulous Stourton Woods during a photoshoot a few years ago.


Hiya folks. It is January and freezing cold. A far cry from the campervan season. Our vans are all tucked away warmly, ish, indoors. We have been having one or two bits done. A new clutch for campervan Jade. Stuff like that.

We will start getting them properly ready for the season towards the end of March and will be opening up for business in mid April. Already taking bookings though and some people have bagsied a week here and a week there in one van or other.

Now is not a bad time to start thinking about this. Weekend breaks away in the summer. Festivals, weddings even. We get a lot of wedding hires, some of which we only find out about when people come to pick up the van. Good though.

We have four campervans for hire. If a crowd of you wanted to go somewhere for a fun trip away why not consider hiring all of them. Imagine how cool it would be turning up at a campsite in convoy 🙂

Anyway just thought I’d get the first post up for 2024. Stay warm and we look forward to seeing you in the season ahead.

Happy New Year


We went to Castlerigg Camp Site in Keswick Lake District to celebrate a birthday with 2 adults and 2 teens plus Stanley the border terrier! Here is a selection of photos we took and a short biog of where we went! 

We had an excellent sized pitch with hook up to campervan Ruby and also had the separate tent (Julie hired an awning) which accommodated a double blow up bed and all our bags. It’s a perfect place to explore the lakes with really lovely walks for a variety of levels. Very dog friendly with the most amazing views to wake up to! 

We had pizza delivered when we arrived and there is a really well stocked shop on site with everything you need. 

We all really enjoyed driving along the A1 in Ruby not having to rush anywhere and I got very nostalgic at winding a window down! Got lots of beeps and appreciation for her! 

Julie Jamie Harry Honey and Stan 🐶

Julie with campervan Ruby at the beach
Stanley dog 🙂

Jessica and Matt Ballard took VW campervan on the North Coast 500 for their honeymoon. This is their trip report.

We had such a brilliant time!!! She drove like a dream too, especially whilst we were on the NC500 and so many people were asking us about her 🙂

I’ve attached loads of photos for you – feel free to choose your favourites! We moved every day and the campsites mostly had incredible views so made for some great photos with Jade. Write up below – hope this is okay? 

‘We took Jade up to Ullswater on the first night, then over to Loch Ness for the second night and then finally, on day 3, we started the real adventure on the NC500! Our first day took us across the Applecross Pass (incredible but a little bit scary as a passenger – it did feel like we might fall off the edge of the cliff a few times!!!) and then into Applecross. The next day, we continued onto Gairloch via an incredible smokery sat right against a waterfall (home smoked sea trout was to die for). Day 5 of our trip took us to Ullapool and we stayed at a brilliant little campsite called Ardmair Point, overlooking the sea. It didn’t get dark at all whilst we were on the North Coast – it was incredible. The next 2 days took us to Scourie and a tiny little campsite called Bay View in Talmine, where we woke up to a view of cows on the beach less than 100m away. After this, we started our journey down the east coast via Thurso and Dornoch. Our final 2 stops were Perth and then down to Robin Hood’s Bay for our final night. 

We would recommend the trip to everyone who can do it – you wouldn’t believe you were still in Scotland with the whitest beaches and bluest sea!!! And driving in Jade made it all the more special for our honeymoon too. 

Thank you Anne’s Vans for helping us with such an unforgettable trip.’

Jade was honestly great fun – we found it easy enough to manoeuvre round each night and had plenty of space really (we definitely packed far too much in hindsight but it worked out fine!!). Matthew drove her (he’s braver than me haha) and he was surprised by how easy she was to drive on the single track and hilly roads – she didn’t struggle at all and once he’d got used to the steering and brakes, it was great! Most difficult thing was getting used to moving from standing still but that got easier as he got used to not having power steering. She was honestly great – the bed was comfy and much bigger than we expected too!!! 

Hope this is all okay – thank you again. We had so much fun and it made it so exciting doing something so different! 

Take care, 


PS I think the idea of planting trees is great – please could ours be Mr and Mrs Ballard? 

We are really grateful to Jessica and Matt of this trip report. It brings real joy to our lives to see customers having such a good time 🙂 If you want to hire a super cool vw campervan for the north coast 500 you know where to come. If you know nothing about the North Coast 500 then follow the link.

Jessica referred to tree planting. We plant a clump of 25 trees for each of our van hires as a gesture towards offsetting the CO2 emissions that will have been generated by the fuel used.

We have been easing VW campervan Jade into your consciousness with some trip reports and she has also been available to hire for a few weeks with a start date of around now. Jade hits the road on her first hire this weekend so we thought we would tell you a bit about the work that has gone into her to make her ready.

You will probably have seen our posts from the Isle of Man where we took Jade over for the TT races. She was away with us for 11 nights in total and we were able to give her a really good test drive.

The first observation is that at 2 litres, Jade has the biggest engine of all our vans. She drives really well and would be our first choice if we  were taking her on a long trip to somewhere like Cornwall or Scotland. This is largely because the bigger engine makes it easier on a long drive.

Secondly we found Jade really easy to live with. Everything is intuitive. It does help that we have the experience of having three other campervans but still Jade is easy to use. The rock and roll bed is the easiest to deploy of all our vans and the roof is very straightforward to put up. Mind you it is in all the vans.

Although Jade is almost identical internally to Ruby she does have some slight differences. The table, for example, folds in half which gives you more options on how to use it. Also the bed in the poptop in Ruby is held up out of the way by straps whereas the fittings for the straps aren’t there in Jade and two wooden batons are used instead. 

When we first saw this our natural inclination was to think “hmm we will need to sort that out” but having used it for 11 days actually the wooden batons are staying for now. They make life simple and work effectively. Let’s face it they have been doing the job for almost 50 years.

We have had the interior completely revamped in Jade. Brand new upholstery in an original VW T2 Westfalia pattern. The new upholstery looks terrific and really finishes off the van. What’s more, the bed is really comfortable.

Today we had a new Sony CD radio with dual bluetooth connections fitted together with some great speakers. People will be able to play the radio using DAB or hook up their own phones and the set has the added advantage of being able to play your phone calls through the speaker system as well as any sat nav apps that might be used.

The new dual electric system we have installed will allow Jade to be connected to electric hookups on campsites for use with things like hair dryers and kettles but also provide a 12v connection from the leisure battery to keep the electric cool box going, even when “wild camping”. The same is true for the USB ports.

Anne has also been busy making some new curtains and Jade has some nice green check ones to match the colour of the van.

We still have one or two improvements planned. For example the interior lighting is provided by a portable LED lamp we bought from GoOutdoors as the new lights hadn’t been delivered at the time. We found this lamp really good/useful and gave off plenty of light in the van at its lowest setting. It recharges from an USB port so we don’t really have a problem with it.

We also need to decide on whether to install a fridge or coolbox. Our own personal preference is for a coolbox which is how it is configured right now but if we can find the right fridge we may yet change that. A coolbox is more versatile than a fridge, typically has more capacity and can be taken in and out easily. Also a campervan fridge is really just a coolbox made to look like a fridge. The jury is out on this one but time will tell.

At the end of the day these vans are fairly simple machines and people hire them because they are fun and cool and not because they have all mod cons. We always get people waving at us when we drive along and returning hirers tell us they don’t really want to hand back the keys because they’ve had a fab time 🙂

All in all we are really pleased with Jade and she is going to be a great addition to the fleet. All our vans are different and they each have their own attraction for different people. Sometimes it is as simple as the colour. What we can say is that whichever van you hire you will have a great time and we look forward to seeing you over the 2022 season and beyond (we get lots of repeat customers 🙂 )

What a couple of days. We moved to Douglas and had lunch with old friends Paul and Wendy. It was chucking it down. The day started dry and we got the van packed up and were just pondering taking the awning down when it began to rain.

This was not part of the plan. You can’t put an awning away wet. Well you can but it is a beast to pack and then needs taking out and drying when you get home. Fortunately the rain was short lived and half an hour later we had managed to get the awning dry enough (with a little help from a towel)  to pack away. It was still slightly damp in places but we will sort that out back in Lincoln.

Anyway after lunch we moved on to the Airbnb we had booked for the last two nights. We wanted to get there early as the parking was first come first served and it being TT week we were worried that the place might be rammed. As it happened we found a spot right in front of the door of the apartment and the van is there now until we leave at the crack of dawn tomorrow.

The views from the Airbnb are terrific and I am writing this whilst looking out over Douglas Bay. The other benefit of  the gaff is its proximity to the TT action in Douglas. I left Anne and walked to the TT Tshirt shop on the promenade, coming away with some 2022 merch. Then we headed out for the main purpose of the evening: the Nile Rodgers and Chic gig.

Wow. One of the best gigs I’ve ever been to. Worranight! We were totally mind blown by it. Every song was a hit and we knew them all. An hour and forty minutes of dancing finished us off for the night and we headed home to bed.

This morning we got up when our bodies told us it was ok to do so, polished off the rest of the bacon and headed down to the promenade. Walked a mile and a half or so in the fresh Manx sea air to the far end of the prom and purchased Manx Electric Railway tickets to Ramsey where we were due to meet school pal Richard to celebrate a significant birthday whilst watching the Senior TT race. The big one.

Had a fantastic view of the racing looking down on Parliament Square. Unfortunately the sidecar race was stopped due to an accident and the delays were such that the Senior TT has been postponed to tomorrow at which point we will be on our merry way back to Lincoln.

Now chillin back in the airbnb and getting ready to head out for tonight’s finale: the Steve Gibbons Band. Thassit for now. It’s been a heck of a trip but nearly time to head home.

The only other thing to report for now is that tomorrow the alarm is set of 6am. As a precautionary measure when we got back from Ramsey I fired up campervan Jade to test she would start. After all, the last thing we want is an “incident” at 6am. Jade started straight away. No problemo. Deeply satisfying. She is 49 years old after all.

Tref & Anne at Nile Rodgers gig
Nile Rodgers and Chic onstage Douglas IoM
Anne electric tram Douglas
TT Sidecar race Ramsey
Tref with Steve Gibbons band members Howard (drums) and Johnny (lead geetar)at Villa Marina Douglas
Steve Gibbons onstage Villa Marina Douglas

Somewhat fuzzy start to the day. It was our last night at Peel campsite last night and we celebrated with dinner out at the Boatyard restaurant. A particular fave of ours. Also stopped off at the Miller’s T’Ale micropub and stayed for longer than planned after getting into conversation with some of the punters.

Today we move to Douglas where we have an Airbnb for a couple of nights. We have tickets for the Nile Rodgers and Chic gig in town tonight, are in Ramsey to watch the Senior TT on Friday and back in Douglas in the evening for the Steve Gibbons Band gig.

Our ferry is unreasonably early on Saturday morning so we figured it made sense to have the campervan loaded in advance and ready to go. Check in closes at 7.15am if I remember correctly so we will have breakfast on the boat.

It’s been a truly great trip so far. We’ve learnt a lot about our new campervan, Jade and have been lucky with the weather. I’m currently sat in front of the van with a cup of tea brought out by the fair Anne. There is gentle snoring emanating from one of the French guys’ tents.  All is well.

It’s mostly blokes in the campsite which has, unusually, resulted in there often being long queues in the gents whilst Anne has been in and out of the ladies in no time at all. The blokes are a mixed bag. I’ve been watching one who must be in his fifties meticulously brushing his long blonde hair. Personally I think I need a haircut if I can grab hold of it at the back 🙂

Also some have been making an effort to shave whereas stubble is part of the deal for me when camping. Perhaps I’ll have a shave for Nile 🙂

It’s a good morning to be shifting our base as the rain is supposed to keep off until later and we will want to get the awning dry before packing it away. Otherwise we keep everything in handy bags and boxes and it should just be a case of chucking it all in (stowing it carefully in) the van. 

Need to clean out the BBQ. We bought a small portable one for £12 before coming away and it did the job for us.

Camping is all part of the TT experience. There is nowhere near enough hotel/B&B accommodation on the Isle of Man to accommodate all the fans and camping is the only option for most. The other constraint is whether you can get a ferry booking. Most of the slots are sold out the first morning they go on sale a year or so in advance so if reading this post makes you feel like booking a van and going next year you really need to be planning for 2024 instead.

The photo btw is Giacomo Agostini who was watching yesterday’s racing from a garden opposite our friends’ Paul and Wendy where I was standing. If you don’t know who he is you should google it 🙂

The campsite is awake to the sound of motorcycles preparing to leave for the races before the roads close. Three bikers in orange hi viz jackets have “Marshal” on their backs. 

We have been for a swim, had breakfast at the Harbour Lights caff and are now back at the campervan. I’m chillin whilst Anne gets sorted. Shortly we are off out to Douglas for the day. I’m watching some racing in a friend’s front garden and Anne is “doing” town.

The tent landscape in front of the campervan has changed over the few days we have been here as bikers pitch up for a couple of days and then move on. Most of the tents are small as they are all carried on the back of the bikes. I can’t imagine they bring many changes of clothes…

After a few days of glorious sunshine the weather changed last night. We were actually ok with this. I quite like lying in the van listening to the rain on the roof and it was gratifying to observe that our new campervan, Jade, took the rain without a single drop getting in.

The wind however was a different issue. I’d parked the van a little too close to the awning when we returned yesterday so the bit of the awning that connects to the van was looser than ideal. In consequence it was flapping quite noisily so I had to take it for the team and get up in the night to tighten it. That’s a lesson about parking the van properly for the next time. 

As soon as we dropped off the sleep again it was a really deep and satisfying sleep. Jade has a very comfortable rock and roll bed. When we finally woke up it was to the sound of the dawn chorus. Although there was the occasional crow this birdsong was sweet to hear and is one of the nice things about campervan life. V tuneful.

We made a brew and I sat in the front passenger seat with my cuppa checking out what had been going on in the rest of the world.

The rain seems now behind us and it is a beautifully fresh Manx morning. Another great day ahead 🙂

After a quiet start to the day we walked up Peel Hill

The campsite is quiet. It is a non race day at the IoM TT races and most people are off doing touristy bits. I’m sat outside the campervan tapping away and enjoying the Manx sunshine.

This has been a great trip so far for learning about our new campervan Jade. Little things like on the second day we bought an adapter so that we could keep the coolbox plugged in to the electricity inside the awning when we drive off for the day.

Campervan Jade being a 1973 Westfalia conversion is almost identical to campervan Ruby of 1974 vintage. There are lots of little differences but fridge wise Ruby has had the original insulated coolbox space (not by any means a fridge – we are talking 1960s/70s tech here) replaced with a 12v mini fridge in the same compartment. These newer fridges are much more efficient. 

Campervan Jade still  has the original cool box setup but is getting a replacement. We are currently trying to decide whether to get a “fridge” or a good quality coolbox. The benefit of the latter is that you can easily  take it out and leave it in the awning as already described.

I’ll keep you posted about this 🙂 Probs.

In the afternoon we left the campervan behind and walked to Corrin’s Folly at the top of Peel Hill. It took less than an hour from campsite to the top of the hill and you get fantastic views from up there.

Descending the hill we had a cup of tea and a crab bap at the Breakwater Cafe looking down at the boats coming in and out of the harbour. The number of nationalities represented by the bikers milling around the cafe was really noticeable. The TT races are a truly international festival. On one occasion Anne got into conversation with a German guy, in German. Good at languages is our Anne 🙂

At around 5pm we strolled to the Peveril pub on the quayside for a beer out on the terrace, moved on to The Miller’s T’Ale for another before heading back to the campsite to light up the BBQ.

Whilst we were cooking we had a visit from a couple of friendly rozzers who had spotted the campervan and came over to check it out. It’s amazing how the cool factor of the vans attracts people. As we drive through the site people whip their phones out to take photos.

It was a really good day and we were out like a light at not much later than 9pm. A tired Tref and Anne, helped by the hill climb, the beers, and the wine with the BBQ. Well we are on a campervan test trip and it is important to simulate real world conditions 🙂

Anne & Tref on top of Peel Hill
view from top of Peel Hill

Went for an early swim and instead of having breakfast in the campervan we strolled into town to the Harbour Lights caff. One of us had the “Over The Mountain” full works and the other had kippers. I’ll leave you to guess who had which 🙂 The breakfast was mahoosive and I won’t need lunch today…

Chilled morning sat around the van catching up on a bit of social media. Here in the Isle of Man we use my phone as a hotspot. It is left plugged in to one of the USB ports in Jade.

Jade is our fourth campervan and one of the learnings we have applied is that you can’t have too many USB ports. This campervan has two double 240v sockets, each with a pair of USB ports. Ok they only work when you are connected to an electric hookup but it is always best to hire a pitch that has this. You can still do “wild camping” and just rely on the leisure battery but you ain‘t going to be able to plug in your hair dryer, for example. When the fridge unit goes in next week we will look to including an USB port with that that works off the leisure battery.

The campsite is deserted as all the bikers have gone off to watch the races. Today our plan is to head South and take some pics of campervan Jade with some scenic backgrounds. Niarbyl, Port Erin and The Sound. We will be watching some more racing as the week progresses.

As for the rest of the day, I bought some books, we had a cuppa at the cafe at the Sound looking out over the Calf of Man and an ice cream back in Peel. tonight we have a table booked at the Creek for dinner at 6.30pm.

I’ll let the pictures do the rest of the talking – will post in groups based on location. If you need a lunch stop off we can recommend the cafe at Niarbyl and the Cosy Nook cafe near the lighthouse at the end of the prom in Port Erin. Also Davisons Manx Ice Cream is by far the best you will ever taste, anywhere. They have an ice cream parlour on the prom in Peel.

Mad Sunday yesterday. The day where the mountain road part of the TT course is made one way and the fans all get to emulate the racers around the course. We’ve always stayed clear 🙂

Mad Sunday is also Peel Day with lots of festivities on the promenade so we decided to leave the campervan parked up in the campsite and stroll into town. The highlight of this particular day is the comedy motorcycle display team the “Purple Helmets” preceded by  motorcycle stunt man Steve Colley. The event was particularly poignant for the Purple Helmets as they are stopping the show after 26 years.

We eased into the day with avocado on toast with egg and bacon and a cafetiere of coffee. I also finished off the milk we had been given by our farming friend Chris Conder when we stayed with her before catching the boat across. Full fat unpasteurised and fresh from the farm. Can’t beat it. I had to toast the sourdough “by hand” on  the stove in the van as we don’t have such luxuries as a toaster 🙂

The Purple Helmets were hilarious and totally not politically correct. The whole afternoon went according to plan. The point at which we came out onto the prom happened to be the best place to stand to watch the display. 

Afterwards we took a chance on finding a table at our favourite cafe the Harbour Lights. The minute we walked in a couple got in and left leaving us a table. Result! Especially when you consider there were thousands of people milling around outside. A scone and banana milkshake later we strolled along to the back room of the Creek Inn to watch the Wales v Ukraine footie match.

The same happened here. We found the one empty table in the perfect spot near the telly and were able to watch the game in comfort. Got the right result, being Welsh, although we were very aware that most of the world will have been supporting the Ukrainians.

Finally we mosied along to meet some friends at the Royal India curry house. I had the foresight to book in advance as they were turning lots of people away. Funny how you always fancy a curry after a few sherberts.

Back to the campsite we crashed out and were asleep within seconds. All in all a good Peel Day out on our campervan adventure.

purple helmets peel day
purple helmets at peel day
steve colley at peel day
steve colley at peel day
bagpipes on the prom during Peel day
bagpipes on the prom during Peel Day

6am in Peel and half the campsite seems to be awake although still lots of snoring very much to be heard from some tents. We arrived at approximately 8pm last night being a bit late as a “white van” had broken down in front of us on the top deck of the boat.

Upon arrival we got the van ready and threw up the awning. I’ll need to redo the awning this morning. Not put this one up meself before. It’s an inflatable job and didn’t go up quite to plan. Who reads instructions anyway? 🙂

It is a glorious sunny day in the Isle of Man and excitement is starting to mount for the first TT races later on today. I grew up here but haven’t been a regular at the TT since I got married. School holidays are different in the Isle of Man and half term on the mainland never seemed to coincide with TT week.

We are here now anyway. Last night after setting up we strolled down and bought some fish and chips in the town and ate them on a picnic bench on the prom. Afterwards we mosied to the Marine pub and had a couple of pints before heading back for what we thought would be an early night but turned out to be 11.20pm which is very late for us.

Our first night in campervan Jade was very comfortable fair play. The newly upholstered bed (J&S Upholstery in Adwick le Street near Doncaster if you are interested – top professionals) exceeded expectations. We take a mattress cover, sheets and duvet with us but I think if I was on my own I would be comfortable enough in a sleeping bag.

Now I’m sat chillin out in the awning while Anne has a snooze before nipping to the local supermarket Shoprite which is just a couple of hundred yards down the road to buy some local Manx bacon and sausages for brekkie.

Although it is rammed with small biker tents I can really recommend Peel Campsite. Ian the manager had kept us spaces next to each other so that we could be next to our pals and we not only had  power but water too! Saved a bit of a walk to fill up the water container. 

On an ongoing basis campervan Jade will have the original sink and fridge unit in and we prefill the sink before going off on a trip. However as this is really a test trip in a new van and the old fridge and water pump needed a bit of a refurb we took it out and left it back at the depot. The electric coolbox works as well as a fridge anyway and fridges in campervans are really just glorified coolboxes.

There is lots to do in the Isle of Man and specifically Peel but the plan for today is just to get sorted and head out to watch some racing. Stay tuned for more news on our trip as it happens.

VW Campervan Jade is our “newest” van. Her previous owner had her for 32 years during which time she was really loved and cared for. Jade has a brand new coat of paint in Turkish green and has had a comprehensive interior refit.

Internally we have kept Jade’s interior as true to the original Westfalia layout but have treated her to new upholstery, bright coloured flooring a decent stereo and new electrics. She has plenty of USB ports and 240v sockets for when you are plugged in to an electric hookup.

Jade is fitted with two seatbelts in the front and has an easy to deploy full size rock and roll bed that sleeps 2 adults, a side seat and a bunk in the pop-top roof that would suit 2 small children. There are windows in the roof to enhance the experience of sleeping up high!

Jade has a cooker, a sink with on-board water tank and a fridge to keep your wine or beer chilled. She also has a little wardrobe and other storage space, making the most of all the nooks and crannies within the van.

Jade, at 2 litres, has the largest engine of all our vans and as such is the best suited to a long trip to Scotland or Cornwall say..

Fully kitted with pots, pans, cutlery and crockery  Jade is ready to go. If you would like to chat about hiring Jade by all means call us on 01522 438888.

Returning customer Liz White enjoyed a fabulous ten days touring the Pennines with her two children and dog. Liz didn’t stop in one spot but toured to different locations around the Peak District which coincidentally is where the Anne’s Vans team went for the weekend.

The first set of pics are Liz’s and the second are from Castleton where we stayed.

Derbyshire and the Peak District is a great place to take one of our campervans. Fairly accessible with some great walking, pubs and restaurants. Also plenty of local shops for supplies and souvenirs.

We have been busy over the winter with new Westfalia upholstery for campervan Ruby. The seat covers were made by specialist VW upholsterers J&S Upholstery in Adwick Le Street. It must be said they have done a terrific job.

In fact the new seats have totally transformed our Ruby. She is now lighter and airier and what’s more the repairs to the springs have made the front sets ever so comfortable. Like new in fact.

You only have to compare the new pics with the old to see the difference.

new westfalia upholstery - front seats
Front seats before
new westfalia upholstery - bed
new westfalia upholstery back seats
vw campervan seat and table

Back seats before

We also had a matching spare wheel cover made. All in all this revamp looks like a terrific success. We are off to Castleton in Derbyshire this weekend to give Ruby a run out so look out for photos from the site.

Ruby is now ready to rock for the season ahead. If you are thinking of having a staycation this year you could do no better than hiring one of our vans. They aren’t only used for pleasure. Companies hire them for corporate events and the BBC is even using one as a mobile studio at this year’s Lincolnshire Show. All our VW campervans are great but when it comes to new Westfalia upholstery Ruby is the business 🙂

Anne’s Vans is a Lincoln based VW campervan rental business based downtown on Great Northern Terrace. People come from all over the country to hire one of our vans, leaving their with us whilst they shoot off on an adventure of a lifetime. Check out our trips pages for ideas on where to go in the campervan

Ruby is getting a fresh new look with brand new made to measure VW campervan upholstery from J&S Upholstery.

Bit of a road trip today to Doncaster with Dave (Coops) our mechanic. Actually it was Adwick Le Street not Donny itself and we were visiting J&S Upholstery. Joanne at J&S is a class act when it comes to upholstery for air cooled VW campervans and it was a real pleasure to be able to spend some time with someone as knowledgeable as her in this space.

We spent a good hour there chatting about vw campervan upholstery. Jo is giving campervan Ruby a makeover. Ruby is, as I’m sure you are well aware, a beautiful burgundy coloured van and probably of all our vans has the layout we like the most.

Ruby was converted in the Westfalia workshops in Germany and still has much of her original interior in place. When we bought ruby we decided at the time to get her an interior makeover but events overtook us and before we knew the season had started.

This winter with more time to plan, Ruby is now getting that makeover. The front seats are being stripped down and the metalwork redone. The seat were definitely starting to show wear. They will also have some welding repairs done to the springs, new padding and a brand new colour scheme that keeps to the colour theme but makes for a lighter environment inside the van.

The featured image is of Coops sat with Joanne discussing the finer points of campervan upholstery.

Joanne and her husband have a really fantastic 1960s splitty that adheres perfectly to the original including a lovely green coat of paint. The image below is of the interior showing the original toilet. These were little more than buckets and this is the first time we have seen one like this (we must get out more).

Sticking strictly to the original design means no electric hookup and no leisure battery. Joanne and her husband get as far as Germany in their van.

VW campervan Ruby will be all ready for the new season when we open up on April 1st. April bookings are already well ahead of last year which is good, innit 🙂 If you are looking for an adventure in a supercool campervan you know where to look.

Campervan on Christmas Day. Anne did a park run with our son Tom on Christmas Day. Boultham Park, Lincoln. None of the rest of the family could be persuaded to go. We were very proud of them and had a hearty family breakfast on their return.

Amazingly they spotted a lovely blue VW campervan parked up near the park run and decided that Anne should have her photo taken with it. Even more amazingly the blue matched her running gear.

Whoever took their van out on Christmas Day would come from hardy stock. Heating wasn’t invented when they made the VW campervans. They are air cooled not air heated especially when it is near to zero degrees Celsius out 🙂 

When we bought Campervan Bertie, our second van,we had to go to the other side of Chester to pick him up. It was just before Christmas and I well remember the lady of the house horse fed us with delicious homemade sausage rolls before we set off home. I was in a comfortable climate controlled car and was headed Liverpool to meet Anne.

Dave the mechanic drove Bertie back to Lincoln. The poor lad had to stop every now and again to defrost his hands.He hadn’t brought gloves with him and the weather was freezing.

The photo is of Anne and Tom wearing their Santa hats in front of the campervan. We won’t say who won. It’s all about taking part.

I’ve thrown in a photo of this campervan Christmas Tree decoration as it seemed appropriate. It’s one of my faves

We don’t hire our vans out over the winter but the new season will soon be upon us and bookings are already doing well for Spring. If, like many others, are thinking of a bit of a campervan adventure in the UK this year then a campervan is the ideal vehicle to get you there.

vw campervan tree dec

Up until now we haven’t paid much attention to the carbon emissions of our vans. Some vans just stay local and some go as far as Scotland or Cornwall. The furthest any of them has been is Betty who went to Berlin where as you might imagine she received a great welcome.

In 2021 the fossil fuels used by our vans started grabbing our attention. Carbon emissions have already begun to affect our lives and that of our customers and VW campervan lovers across the globe. However there have been two significant events in the UK in particular that made us sit up and take notice.

E5 to E10 petrol

Firstly the move in unleaded fuel from E5 to E10 is a cause for concern. This change is designed to have environmental benefits. Ethanol absorbs CO2 as it is produced. But, in turn, this will affect our vehicles. The additional ethanol it uses can cause long term harm to the carburettor and fuel pipes, a problem that cars with modern technology don’t have.

Our answer is simply to continue using E5, usually super unleaded or premium unleaded fuel. Whilst E5 is more expensive it does less harm to the vans and comes with the benefit of better miles per gallon. We can also supply an additive that helps lessen the damage if only E10 is available. We look to offset the carbon emissions caused by this stance.

COP 26

The other major event was the COP26 summit on climate change. From the outside, it became clear the difficulty that governments have in agreeing on a climate plan for our Earth. The world in which we live and for which we have no alternative. The only thing we could think of was to see what we could do ourselves.

Changing to electric cars might be one thing but these are expensive and still come with issues. People worry about whether there are enough charging points on long journeys, the mining of precious metals used in their manufacture and the fact that carbon based fuels are still used to generate the electricity they use.

The other point is that our vans, being vintage, are unlikely to ever really be converted to electric. Even if they could they would lose the funkiness, the quaintness, the reasons our customers hire them. There isn’t actually room for the batteries.

Our Solution

So our conclusion is that whilst we wait for governments and technology to get it right we should do something that we think can help. Something that should hopefully help make an impact. Our answer has been to plant trees.

Our calculations tell us that on average each of our vans in 2021 generated 1.73 tonnes of CO2. Some will have generated more and some less. It depends on how far you drive and therefore how much fuel you use. 1.73 tonnes feels like a good average. We are talking just under 4,000 miles a year.

So our three vans in 2021 will, we think, have generated 5.6 tonnes of CO2. We asked around to find see whether anyone we know could recommend a scheme. Some we quickly discarded but Ecologi seemed to fit with what we wanted to do.


Ecologi offer different subscription plans to cater to your business’ or personal carbon emissions. You can also offer to plant a tree in a rainforest for as little as £0.12. Their projects include mangrove tree plantations in Madagascar as well as Mozambique, Nicaragua and numerous other places.

Mangrove trees in Madagascar
Mangroves in Madagascar (Credit: Ecologi and Eden Reforestation Projects)

They say that a woodland of 500 trees will reduce CO2 by 10 tonnes. We have now invested in such woodland. That will cover our base carbon emissions with room to become carbon positive. We feel much better for it and hope this rubs off on our customers. We care about the environment and we have no doubt you all do too. It works out at around 10 trees per van hire.

From the 2022 season onwards we are going to donate a clump of trees for every hire we have.

What’s more we are giving our customers a chance to contribute. Through our booking website you can optionally donate a clump of 25 trees for £4.90 or a thicket of 50 for £9.80. You can decide. You don’t have to donate anything but if you are putting in some long miles it may help you feel even better about your holiday.

Every time you make a donation your name will appear as the donor. If you donate directly via this link you can enter your own name or if you do it through our website when booking a van we will do it for you and let you know when it is done.

Check out You can see how many trees we have planted and where they are.

We plant trees with Ecologi

Tired but happy after our annual trip to Woodhall Spa Country Park in a campervan. Felt as if we were the only ones there. Amazingly we got there early and were soon set up although it did take us a while to realise that we had the awning inside out which was why we couldn’t find the guy ropes!

Our usual form on arrival for this weekend is to get pitched and then send someone for fish and chips from the chippy in the village. However the Smiths, who were the only ones in the group coming by car as they were kipping in a “luxury pod” hadn’t arrived and as the chip shop was a good 20 minutes walk away we all set off anyway. 

Fortunately as we approached the campsite barrier and to everyone’s joy, the Smiths arrived so we about turned to the vans and got the wine out whilst they drove off and fetched the nosh. 8 lots of haddock, chips and mushy peas!

As night fell and the temperature dropped we moved into one of the vans (ok motorhome) and had a bit of a singsong – old rugby songs which for some reason you never hear these days.

Next morning we cooked our own breakfasts and met to walk into the village. The weather forecast was not good and indeed it rained solidly from around noon to 10pm. This didn’t dampen our ardour and in fact Anne went swimming in Jubilee Park Open Air Pool. Because of the rain she was the only one in the pool!! Was warm enough 🙂

A stroll around Woodhall involves the usual things of stop offs at coffee shops, couple of beers in the pub, lunch at The Tea Shop In The Woods and then back to the vans for an afternoon kip. We also usually buy a few bits and bobs from the deli on the main street but every time we passed it there was a long queue – pandemic social distancing rules inside the shop!

That evening we dined at the Abbey Lodge pub which was a fair old trek from the campsite so we booked a taxis to shuttle us there and back. Good job really as it was still chucking it down.

We were the last to leave the pub and Anne nearly got in the wrong car – the people said to her “you should have gone to specsavers”. As soon as we got back to the vans that was it. Straight to bed, all healthily tired.

On the last morning we traditionally have a big cookout. People bring out their bacon, sausages etc for cooking on Dave’s Teppanyaki grill. Fortunately it had fined up and we enjoyed our last alfresco meal in relatively warm conditions.

Now we have packed up and made it home to start the unpacking process. I counted three waves from other motorists between Wooddall and home. All part of the fun of heading off for the weekend in a vintage VW campervan 🙂

We love this area. You have to like the great outdoors but if heading off in a campervan is your idea of fun then you will have no problem liking Llanberis. Not only are there some classic walks around here but you can also use Llanberis as a base to go off for the day. We have stuck a few ideas down here.

  • The beaches of Anglesey especially Llanddwyn
  • Caernarfon Castle
  • The Snowdon Mountain railway (although you should walk really)
  • Portmeirion
  • Harlech Castle
  • Conway Castle
  • The Ffestiniog and Welsh Highlands Railway
  • The Slate Museum in Llanberis itself
  • Beddgelert

There are loads of other places to go and things to do. Lots of castles and trains by the looks of it. In llanberis there are plenty of pub and restaurant options including the famous climbers’ caff Pete’s Eats. llanberis actually has one of the best Indian Restaurants we have been to anywhere.

We haven’t recommended a specific campsite here as there are plenty to choose from. At just over 200 miles this is about the furthest we recommend going in one day’s driving but it is worth it. This is a week’s trip and not a weekender.

VW Campervan Ruby is an iconic 1974 Westfalia conversion – some say the best interior of any of the 1970’s campers. She was completely professionally restored in 2012 and has been professionally maintained. She had a brand new Volkswagen Heritage engine fitted in April 2015 and a new gearbox in 2017. In burgundy over cream livery our latest campervan is a real head turner.

Ruby is fitted with 4 inertia seatbelts – 2 on the front seats and 2 on the rear seat, plus a lap belt. She has a rock and roll bed that sleeps 2 adults, a side seat and a bunk in the pop-top roof that would suit 2 children or 1 adult. There are windows in the roof to enhance the experience of sleeping up high!

Ruby has a cooker, a sink with on-board water tank and a cool box to keep your wine or beer chilled. She also has a little wardrobe and other storage space, making the most of all the nooks and crannies within the van.

Fully kitted with pots, pans, cutlery and crockery  Ruby is ready to go. If you would like to chat about hiring Ruby by all means call us on 01522 438888.

Our second VW Campervan is Bertie, a 1978 VW T2 “late bay” Devon Moonraker, which has been lovingly restored to a impressively high standard. VW Campervan restorations don’t really come much better than this.

Bertie’s colour is a beautiful pastel blue with bespoke American white oak interior. The upholstery has to be seen to be believed in VW branded blue and cream.

Bertie sleeps four inside (2 adults 2 small kids) on a quality upholstered full width rock and roll bed, a bunk in the pop top and a hammock over the front seats.

Other features include a TV & DVD player, Sink, Smev oven, Pull out gas burner system, on-off touch LED lighting, 240v hook up and marine leisure charging system, electronic ignition and Noise Killer soundproofing

A Retrosound Model 2 classic radio with i-pod and Bluetooth connectivity ensures you can safely use your phone in hands free mode, play your own music and provide sat nav.

Bertie has chrome eyelids, wind deflectors, handle protectors, VW badges, door handles, door pulls, rear jail bar.

Check out our top tips for making the most out of your VW campervan holiday. If you would like to chat about hiring Bertie by all means call us on 01522 438888.

VW Campervan Betty is a classic 1971 conversion from the Devon Moonraker workshop with a walk through aisle for easy access to the rear.

In her original orange and white livery Betty attracts attention wherever she goes. She had a brand new Volkswagen Heritage engine fitted in 2020. 

Betty has 2 inertia seat belts on the front seats and 2 lap belts on the rear seat plus a rear facing jump seat that can be used to sit opposite each other when you are eating in the van.

A ¾ sized rock and roll bed offers a comfortable night’s sleep for 2 adults and a pop top allows you to stand upright inside the van.

The 2 ring gas cooker with grill, a sink with on-board water storage and a cool box to keep your wine or beer chilled provide all the facilities you will need for your trip. She also has a little wardrobe and plenty of other storage space, making the most of all the nooks and crannies within the van.

Fully kitted with pots, pans, cutlery and crockery  Betty is ready to go. If you would like to chat about hiring Betty by all means call us on 01522 438888.