Washing machine incident…

When in Birmingham we stayed in a place with a great view. While it was small it also had a washing machine! Woohoo – always an added bonus on holiday. On our last night we decided to use it. They are simple machines after all. Once it had completed the cycle and drained etc… we opened it and water came spilling onto the floor in front. Okay maybe it hadn’t drained… despite indicating it had. Sigh. At this point tee put it on the drain setting twice more – eventually it drained.

The machine was one of those fancy washer-dryers. Set it to dry the clothes… and guess what – yep it didn’t do a great job as they were still damp so hung these up in the room. While this was going we had put the towels on the wet carpet to remove water. You can imagine how wet the towels were after this exercise. We decided to attempt to dry these in the dryer- which also didn’t work well. We resulted to putting these on the towel rail – which was pretty hot, but didn’t really dry them either.

One we had attempted to remove as much water as possible from the carpet, Kym used his work knowledge to the problem and we put the fan in the room focused on the carpet to attempt to dry it out (hair drier was not going to cut it.).

The next morning the clothes were put through the dryers again, as were the towels. The carpet was still damp in places, so the fan was put on again – until we checked out. Did it help – yes, it was still a bit damp but not as bad.

All I want to know …who puts carpet under and in front of a washing machine?

Bonus day 1: Slow tour visits Birmingham

The slow tour has let Yorkshire for London. It could take us two and half hours on Hull Trains our, in true slow tour fashion it could take for days via Birmingham and Oxford.

In Birmingham we made up a leisurely bike route of around 20 kilometers. It was better than any GPX file I could find. It included, in slow tour style, an accidental visit to Cadbury World. Bournville is:

  • ward within the council constituency of Selly Oak
  • a model village on the south side of Birmingham
  • site of the original ‘Factory in a Garden’
  • best known for its connections with the Cadbury family and chocolate
  • one of the nicest places to live in Britain.

The ride was made up of two parts. To Cadbury World and from Cadbury World.

To Cadbury World

We started near New Street Station. That was quite confusing to work out which way we should go given all the buses and taxis around the area. But it didn’t take long before we found the entry to the canal.

The Birmingham towpaths seem to be in pretty good shape. At times the path becomes quite narrow because of the bordering hedges or the right and low bridges.

Cadbury World

Fortunately, we arrived too late to get entry to Cadbury World this day. After buying some chocolate, we retreated to Bournville the model village built around the factory. As you ready earlier in this post, Bournville is one of the nicest places in England to live.

We visited a nice cafe and Selly Manor.

Returning to Birmingham

On the way back we rode though some suburbs and Birmingham University to Edgbaston and through Cannon Hill Park.


  • There is no clean GPX file for this rude. You might get some ideas from our Strava accounts. Part 1 was to Bournville and Part 2 was the return.
  • Cycling In Birmingham has good information to help you put your own route together.

Small spaces

We have been on the move again. It really makes us appreciate staying in one place for three weeks – and not moving suitcases.

Birmingham new street station

When planning we aim for accomodation near train stations, so we don’t have to walk far. This time we are staying above a grill & rooms… and they appear to have good looking dry aged steaks. But we will have to let you know after dinner!

Blog post..?

It’s cold here in Birmingham. – just in case you are sitting in sunny Australia and thinking you are not looking forward to summer.

Well here in England, I would not be looking forward to winter. Thankfully I’m only here for another week.

Yesterday at this time it was a warm 2 degrees – and the wind is cold! While it is cold – at least it’s not raining. To stay warm while cycling yesterday I was wearing seven layers of clothing – and two of the shirts were heatech clothing (Japanese brand of thermal, I should of pack the ‘extra warm’ shirt), a puffy vest (the down was obtained responsibly), and a jacket. I understand now why Europeans have very warm jackets and wear tshirts underneath. Clearly I’m not used to living in this climate!

Day 10: Slow Tour of Yorkshire

The Hull Hustle

The final day of our Slow Tour of Yorkshire allegedly involved a loop around the city of Hull. We did have a GPX file to follow. But we quickly abandoned that route and followed something more random.

Part 1 of the route broadly followed the River Hull and then moved towards Hull University. Coffee and food provisions were bought from Newland avenue.

Part 2 of the route involved a random ride towards Helen’s Uncle’s House. If you follow it pop in and say hi to Bob.

Part 3 of the route involved a direct ride back to the Hideout Homebase along Anlaby Road in the wet!

The first two parts of the route are provided below, The last part, unfortunately, was not recorded. You know how it goes with tech. Works 95% of the time but let’s you down for the last 5%.

We spent three weeks in Hull. We found a city with a group of people that are taking the history of Hull and making something with it. There is a good theatre and music scene. There is also good food and coffee.

Frankly, the Hull City Council has continued to improve the shopping and old town areas. Everywhere is having a tough time with commercial properties given the disruption of retail by the internet. But I wonder whether Adelaide is a one-trick pony. Rundle Mall in the 1970s can not be all there is to be done? So many of our city streets are run down and there are indeed things that our Adelaide City Council could learn from Hull.

If you’re in Yorkshire – visit Hull – it might be at the end of the train line – but it has much to offer. Here are some photos to tempt you.


  • If you actually want to follow the correct loop, then it is available from Let’s Ride UK.

Day 9: Slow Tour of Yorkshire

You know it’s big when …

Like the Tour de France, the Slow Tour of Yorkshire demonstrates its success by leaving its namesake for this stage of the tour. While starting at Hessle, most of Day 9 was actually conducted in neighbouring Lincolnshire after crossing the Humber Bridge. Overall the ride was about 49km.

Humber Bridge

The Humber Bridge is:

  • a breath-taking, Grade 1 listed structure which links Yorkshire and Lincolnshire on the A15.
  • a single span road suspension bridge
  • fifth longest bridge of its kind in the world
  • one of Hull and East Yorkshire’s most iconic landmarks.


Most of this figure 8 ride was undertaken on quite country lanes. While there were some steady climbs the downhills were the best of the ride.

The views included farming, ports, industry and mining. A truly worthwhile ride. Barton upon Humber was the only significant urban area that we traversed.

The route has a special loop into Ulceby so you can visit the team rooms for lunch. Te@6 offered a lovely ploughman board and soup for lunch. Along with some good tea!

The villages had some fine buildings and a nice duck pond.


The ride back over the Humber Bridge in the afternoon was better than the ride in the morning. Less wind and more sun.

We finished off the ride by heading into the village of Hessle. This is a well serviced area with a range of shops and coffee shops. It has plenty of bus services to Hull and is serviced by train services.