Newport camper van conversion business launched

A VW Camper van conversion business has been launched by three Newport businessmen.

Pure VW Campers has been set up by Insider Rising Star David Greenhaf of Pure Vans, Steven Thompson from Morning VW Camper Hire and David Busson from The Stand People.

The company has said that it had secured an agreement with a caravan retailer to sell its products nationally.

Technical director Thompson has previously established a camper van hire business served in the Royal Engineers for 18 years.

Greenhaf, the company’s sales director, is the founder of Pure Vans, a commercial vehicle supplier which is on course for turnover of £7m in the next financial year.

Commercial director Busson founded The Stand People in 2008 and has also worked as the European Project Manager for a national exhibition company.

The company said it had taken orders before it was set up and is now planning to expand its team through an apprenticeship programme and the Jobs Growth Wales scheme

Mum’s VW campervan shack in Shed of the Year mix

Jo Gosling from Shutlanger with her Shed of the Year entry

Jo Gosling from Shutlanger with her Shed of the Year entry

A mum-of-two may soon be running her VW campervan wedding hire firm from the Shed of the Year.

Jo Gosling, 42, who set up Pear Tree Weddings in 2011, has a fleet of six campervans for bride and grooms to add a vintage twist to their wedding day.

She decorates the vans – which each have names like Flossy and Wilma – with ribbon, sticks a bottle of bubbly in the back and organises a chauffeur to whisk the couple to their ceremony.

Jo, who lives in Shutlanger with her husband Clive, 52, said: “We used to go to festivals and on holidays in Flossy, when someone asked to borrow her for their wedding and we thought now there’s an idea.

“We now have the finest VW fleet in the country and the largest family-owned collection.”

Jo began running the business from a table at the back of the lounge and then had to move to the kids’ playroom.

Jo inside her garden shed officeJo inside her garden shed office

But luckily for Abigail, 11, and Charlie, eight, business continued to boom so Jo gutted the garden shed and made that her office.

The shack, painted pear-green by Clive, is in the running to be named Shed of the Year 2015 – a UK-wide competition run by Cuprinol.

If it can hold off competition from a castle, a pirate ship and a nightclub, Jo will be crowned the overall winner and will receive £1,000.


Daphne, the 1964 campervan
Daphne, the 1964 campervan

Volkswagen T2 Appears on LEGO Ideas Site

1487352 IMG 4155 1200 full

For those unfamiliar with LEGO’s Ideas site, the recipe is really quite simple- build something awesome, post it, and see how many supporters it can get in a set period of time.  If the creation is able to hit 10,000, it’ll be officially reviewed by LEGO.  In the event they give it a green light, customers will then be able to purchase the item in stores.

1487349 IMG 4312 1200 full 600x400

This certainly isn’t the first Volkswagen Transporter to be featured on the site, and it won’t be the last either.  But what does make it interesting is the inclusion of surfboards, bumper-mounted fog lights, an aggressive ride height and wood-look bed.  In a nutshell, the model is able to capture the essence of the T2 scene without the need for elaborate props or additions.

1487307 IMG 4158 1200 full 600x400

To become a supporter of this kit, click here.

Thanks to Rico for the tip!

2016 Volkswagen California pricing confirmed


Pricing for the next-generation Volkswagen California has been announced, with the modern-day campervan starting from £37,657. Orders in Britain start from early August and first deliveries will take place before the end of the year.

Volkswagen has built a reputation for producing camper vans over the last 60 years and the new California, based on the new T6 Volkswagen Transporter van is the latest in that line. Two trim levels are specified for the California, Beach and Ocean.

Based on the new Volkswagen Transporter T6 van, the California is offered with the choice of three 2.0-litre diesel engines. Outputs include 100bhp, 148bhp and 201bhp and with the latter two outputs the California can switch from front-wheel to 4MOTION four-wheel drive.

All models will be equipped with Volkswagen BlueMotion technology for improved fuel economy. In fact, Volkswagen has claimed fuel economy and emissions have been lowered by up to 15 per cent compared to the old California. A range of transmissions is offered including a five-speed manual, six-speed manual and seven-speed DSG gearbox.

Like the previous California, the new model is available in two trim levels, with the standard option called Beach. However, the higher trim level is now called Ocean instead of SE. Beach models are available with either a 100bhp diesel with a five-speed manual gearbox, or the 148bhp unit with a six-speed manual or seven-speed DSG automatic ‘box.

Standard features for the new California Beach include a bench-seat that can convert to a two-berth bed across the width of the vehicle. There’s also a manual pop-up roof accommodating a double bed, fold-out table and chairs stored in the sliding rear door and tailgate and an integrated awning.

The California Ocean, priced from £47,840, is available with the 148bhp and 201bhp diesels and the choice of either a six-speed manual or seven-speed DSG gearbox.

Features added by the Ocean model include an electro-hydraulic pop-up roof with lighting, a fully functioning kitchenette pluss appliances including a fridge and a sink. Also included is a ‘premium’ dashboard (optional at extra cost for the Beach model) which features a wide centre console and VW’s latest infotainment system. Also included is a DAB digital radio and Bluetooth connectivity

Volkswagen has improved driver safety with a array of new driver aids. These include brake assist and an automatic post-collision braking system. The California can also be specified with safety options such as adaptive cruise control and city emergency braking.

Discounts from £2800 to £4000 are available on the current generation of VW California, so similar discounts could be expected on this next generation eventually.



VW camper van catches fire and almost brings M62 to standstill


A VW camper van nearly ground a major motorway near Leeds to a hault, after it caught alight.

The flam-engulfed vehicle reduced westbound tragic on M62 at junction 29 to a crawl, just before the start of the busy rush hour period.

An image of the blaze shows flames tearing through the car’s body, with acrid smoke rising from its roof.

The picture was captured by the Press Association’s head of IT services, Andy Godfrey, who was a passenger in a passing car at around 4:30pm on Friday.

He said: “We were crawling by with traffic queuing as the inside two lanes were shut. It’s obviously somebody’s pride and joy that’s gone up in flames.

“The driver was talking to a police officer there. There was a police car – and a fire engine coming up behind ready to put out the flames.“

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said three fire engines went to the scene, from Rothwell, Hunslet and Normanton, and one hose reel was used to put out the blaze.

They had no information on the cause of the fire, except to say it was “not malicious”.





Hot rods to a VW microbus – Cruise Night attracts all sorts!

“Every year, as long as they have it the night they’re supposed to, there’s been more cars. This is the most I’ve ever seen,” said Wiltonian Paul Bonomo as he stood next to his 1932 Ford Highboy Roadster Hot Rod at this year’s Wilton Kiwanis Geeb Fleming Memorial Cruise Night Friday, July 10.

“I’ve always been a car guy, since I was 15. Lived in Wilton all my life. My family moved here in 1922. We’ve been here for almost a hundred years,” said Bonomo.

“I’ve come (to the Cruise Night) every year since they had it. I knew Geeb, the guy who started it,” said Bonomo.

Thomas “Geeb” Fleming was killed by a drunk driver in 2009. He started Cruise Night out of a love for cars and car people and ran it for eight years, and now, six years after his death, the Friday night destination is still attracting enthusiasts and non-enthusiasts alike.

“This is just great,” said Bonomo, “and there’s new stuff coming. I haven’t seen these Land Rovers before; I haven’t seen that Ford,” as he pointed to various cars around the Piersall Building parking lot. “A lot of stuff here that hasn’t been here before. A lot of stuff that has been, but a lot of stuff that hasn’t.”

Bonomo exhibited four of his 10 vintage vehicles Friday: A 1963 Willy’s CJ3B, a 1961 Corvette Hot Rod, the aforementioned 1932 Ford Highboy Roadster Hot Rod and, perhaps most interestingly, a 1966 21-window Deluxe Volkswagen Microbus.

“Believe it or not, that’s probably worth more than any of these three,” Bonomo said. “They became very, very popular in the late 60s. It was really the first minivan. People bought them, but nobody held onto them.”

To Bonomo, it is priceless.

“I was getting some parts in California,” he said, “and the part-guy offered me 40 grand for it; I said, ‘no.’ I put it up for sale briefly, and had another guy offer me 55; I said, ‘no.’ He upped it to 65; I said, ‘no.’ He said, ‘Will you go to 75?’ I said, ‘no.’ I’ve seen them go for $130,000.”

The man underneath the hood

“I’m just delighted that everybody picked up on the spirit of ‘Come; bring what you got; let’s all enjoy it.’ Frankly, I’m amazed,” said Kevin Craw, who organized and ran the event, and who has been doing so ever since Geeb passed away. Craw and Geeb were best friends, and Craw helped Geeb manage Cruise Night as his “second lieutenant” before fully taking over after his tragic death.

“Thanks to the Kiwanis Club for doing all the hard work with the food,” he added. “Certainly thanks to the Village Market for helping us get set up and providing us with all the great ingredients; they gave us a big break on the bill. And thanks to the Coachmen Car Club of Norwalk for bringing the sound system and helping to keep the vibe rolling. A lot of the really cool cars here tonight are Coachmen Cars.

“I think this is at least as good, and maybe more cars than previous years. Just a great turnout. I love the vibe. Ben’s Ice Cream Truck is here, gotta have a milk shake; they’re amazing,” said Craw while simultaneously fielding questions from passers-by and other individuals.

Craw showed a 1963 Triumph TR3B, a 1971 BMW 2800CS and a 1973 BMW 2002.

His favorite is the ’71 BMW. It belonged to his late father. The 2800CS was a limited production model and was BMW’s flagship vehicle from 1968 to 1976.

“My dad loved that car,” said Craw. “It was just a shell when I inherited it. It took me three years to restore. It used to be blue, with blue leather, too. Now, it’s Verona Red.”

New camper van from Rolling Homes


Get outdoors with the new Shackleton All the practicality of a VW camper conversion but at a fraction of the cost is the promise of the new Shackleton, entry-level VW camper conversion that was on show at the NEC, Birmingham. Based on a VW T5 Transporter, the Shackleton features a front elevating, German SCA deluxe roof, colour coded to match the vehicle paintwork, plus handmade, lightweight, real wood veneered board with solid oak edges and solid surface worktops.

A 120amp marine battery powers the 12v system that runs the compressor fridge, LED lighting and water pump. The layout is a classic side kitchen with the rear seats forming the double bed.  The kitchen gas a 50-litre fridge, Smev twin-burner hob with integrated sink, water tank and pump. At the front a double-passenger seat swivels round to face into the cabin. All the internal sides are fully insulated with sheep wool and the carpet features a soft, dark-grey trim. Overall length of the vehicle is 4.89m and the height with the roof extended comes to 3.04m.

The basic OTR price is £36,995 but there are a number of extra options that can be specified. These include a long wheelbase version, which is £1,200 extra, reversing sensors, awning rails and awning itself, 75w solar panel, under seat safe, VW bike rack, swivelling drivers seat and an electric blow heater.

If you want to try out a Rolling Homes campervan before you commit to buying then try hiring one for a short break. If you decide to buy after your rental then Rolling Homes will refund half the hire cost. Alternatively, just rent one for weekends or an entire week with either the Columbus model with one twin bed and a twin in the roof, or the Livingstone model with a rear kitchen and two single beds and a twin in the roof.

More details at

Shackleton budget range

The Shackleton provides the ideal starting point for anyone looking for their first new motorhome. This is our entry-level Camper which is built using the same components as the more expensive models. This has the same level of craftsmanship and attention to detail, but with a softer price tag.

  • Front elevating German SCA deluxe roof which is colour coded to match vehicle paintwork. Included is a deluxe bed which gives extra sleeping room for 2 adults.
  • Solid surface kitchen worktop.
  • Smev twin burner hob with neat integrated sink, water tank and pump. Sealed gas locker with regulator and gas safety certificate.
  • Extensive cupboards, lockers, wardrobes and a removable table made from top quality board.
  • Swivelling Cab Seats and a Crash test approved RIB seat/bed system. The seat folds simply into a flat bed of 6ft
  • Full internal gas system with steel gas bottle locker with fully sealed door. All gas work carried out by registered motorhome LPG fitter and certificated.
  • Twin rows of LED lights.
  • 50 litre Waeco compressor fridge freezer.
  • All Rolling Homes conversions are fitted with a bespoke CE approved 12v wiring system independent from the vehicles electrics and uses a 110 amp/hr marine battery to control the 12v equipment. This system runs the compressor fridge, led lighting and water pump and is charged when the engine is running or connected to the mains via a discrete 240v hook up.
  • All rear internal sides fully insulated with sheepswool and carpet lined with soft dark grey trim.
  • Double steel box centre frame – crash proof roof.
  • TV aerial system
  • 5-year guarantee plus manufacturers warranty.

Raising a glass with Camper Vin


Will, tell SoGlos readers a bit about yourself and where you work.

My name’s Will Spiers, I’m 32, and I am the founder and owner of CamperVin, the ultimate mobile bar business. I was born and grew up in Cheltenham but I’m now a country convert, living in Bourton-on-the-Water.

What’s your background?

I have worked in hospitality since the age of 14, whether it’s been my main job or as a second job while I worked in financial advice and recruitment, but it’s always where my heart lay.

What’s the best thing about your job?

I love it. Every day is different and there are so many challenges, ultimately the buck stops with me and it gives so much satisfaction when we do a great job for our clients.

How long has CamperVin been established?

We launched in May 2013 with our first van.

How did you come up with the concept?

It evolved in all honesty, I had seen some vehicle and caravan-based bars and decided I was going to take the plunge and do something similar. Initially the plan was to build a bar around a VW camper but it was suggested we modify the vehicle to be the actual bar and then we worked with some great designers to bring the concept to life.

Have you always been a fan of VW campers?

I have, they have such a classic feel to them and ever since I was little I thought they were fantastic. It’s amazing to see how many people they appeal to as well.

Did it take a lot of work to restore your vans?

It was an enormous amount of work; this hadn’t been done before so there were a lot of obstacles to overcome and a lot of things to learn about how it needed to be done. We didn’t have a plan or set of drawings to work from so it really was an evolution.

We love the name of business; did it take long to come up with it?

I’ll be honest; it was the first name I came up with driving back from my recruitment job one day. I loved it and stuck with it.

What is CamperVins’ drinks specialism?

We serve a great range of products and everything has been carefully selected to offer a premium offering. We believe our drinks are fantastic and love working closely with our suppliers to showcase the effort and passion they put into making them.

What sort of drinks do you sell?

We offer a full range of beers, wines, spirits and cocktails as standard but the offering is flexible so we can do a specialist wines, Champagne, cocktails or even a gin bar.

What sort of events do you attend? Has there been a favourite in Gloucestershire so far?

We do a huge variety of events including horse racing, food and drink festivals, charity events, music concerts, weddings, birthdays, firework parties and more. My favourite so far would have to be Cheltenham Races, I love going there as a visitor and it was great being on the other side of the fence for a change.

Are you busy year-round or is more popular in the summer?

We do have bookings and events all year round but the summer season is much busier; from the end of April through to the end of September we have only had one weekend without a booking.

Can you tell us a bit about your new sister company?

We are delighted to have launched Willy’s Wine Bar; it is a converted 1969 Rice Trailer horsebox and has been finished to an incredible standard. The wines we offer are really premium, and the reaction to it has been absolutely amazing, in fact delighted would be an understatement.

What is your personal, all time favourite drink and why?

I’ve really fallen in love with gin and tonics recently. They used to be so generic but there’s so much variety and the quality has improved so much in recent years that there is so much choice now. My personal favourite has to be Cotswolds Distillery’s Dry Gin with Fever Tree Tonic and fresh lime.

What do you get up to outside of work?

I have much less social time now, especially at weekends, but I try and play golf, hockey and cricket as much as possible. I love watching rugby, following Gloucester and England, and I’m really looking forward to the World Cup later this year and getting along to some games.

Where else do you drink in Gloucestershire?

The Black Horse Inn in Naunton is the best local imaginable and I always hit The Retreat in Cheltenham whenever I am in town.

How do you think CamperVin will have changed or developed in a year’s time?

I think we will move out of the food festival market and aim for more horse racing, weddings and corporate work in the next year or so.

Do you host any events or have any special offers you think our readers might be interested in?

We are attending some great local events in the coming months and we are still offering a no booking fee for events within 25 miles of Cheltenham if they are booked this year. For more information call Campervin on 07500 802753. – See more at:



Turbo-speed historic VW Camper Van up for auction


MORE used to attracting dedicated arts’ lovers, David Lay’s Penzance Auction House could be swamped with surfer dudes next Tuesday.

At their general and household sale, a recently restored 1981 VW camper van – the classic wheels of choice for many surfers – will be one of the lots up for grabs.

The van has undergone a Subaru engine conversion and with a two-litre Impreza engine, and David Lay has been told that it can easily manage 70mph uphill.

As well as having bags of speed, there is also plenty of space as the van has the much sought-after Viking ‘Spacesaver’ pop-top roof which can sleep up to four people and has been resprayed in ivory and Porsche aubergine.

David Lay estimates that the campervan will fetch £4-6,000.

Also in the sale is another vehicle designed for serious speed – this time on water, an Aquador 21 WA speed boat with a 225 Honda outboard engine.

It comes on its on twin-axle trailer and has a guide price of £10-15,000.

These items, as well as other vehicles in the sale, can be viewed at the Penzance Auction House in Alverton, Penzance on Saturday and next Monday, July 20.

The sale starts at 10am on Tuesday; for more details, contact David Lay’s offices on 01736 361414.

Volkswagen unveils a one-off Amarok ambulance

 Volkswagen unveils a one-off Amarok ambulance

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has created a one-off Amarok ambulance for the East Midlands Ambulance Service in the United Kingdom.

Designed to rescue patients “who are often stranded miles off the beaten track,” the ambulance has 4MOTION all-wheel drive and a snorkel which helps the model to drive through water that is up to 500mm (19.6 inches) deep.  The ambulance also has life-saving emergency medical equipment and a load area to transport patients.

The model is currently a one-off but Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles UK Head of Fleet, Chris Black, said “… the vehicle is already beginning to receive a great deal of interest and I am sure that we can expect to see similar Amarok ambulances in the future.”

Source: Volkswagen