|Motorhomes for the Disabled|
For 2 years we searched for a replacement for our ageing Elddis Typhoon GTX
caravan. Visits to the Earls Court, NEC and Thames Valley shows for discussions with
manufacturers and dealers, although initially promising, eventually led nowhere. It appeared
most suppliers had full order books and just could not be bothered with producing any
'one off specials'. All our enquiries just fizzled out and we were left with only the
smaller producers of the very 'up market' models offering any likelihood of meeting our
requirements. Unfortunately we would also have to change our adapted car for
a 4 wheeled drive vehicle to tow these heavy caravans. |
It was whilst at the April 2000 Thames Valley show a friend and I got talking to a salesman from Chelston Motorhomes and much to my amazement he actually produced a price list of some basic modifications to suit the disabled for the Autotrail range of motorhomes. I knew of no one in the caravan industry who could do that for their range! The seed had been sown and, as yet another potential source of a replacement caravan dried up, we began looking further at the motorhome market. Inquiries revealed there were at least two other suppliers willing to produce modified motorhomes. We also found out that the Motorhome,Motorcaravan Monthly (MMM) Magazine kept a database of motorhome aids and adaptations for the disabled which it published every two years as a supplement to their magazine. It didn't take long to obtain a copy of the latest supplement issued in 1999 and now being even more disgusted with the current attitude of the caravan industry, we made a list of disadvantages and advantages of changing to a motorhome . We wavered about the cost, came up with ideas about how to overcome the disadvantages, checked and double checked and eventually in early May 2000 'bit the bullet' and ordered an Autotrail Mohican on a Mercedes Sprinter 316 chassis from Chelston Motorhomes. Compared to the couldn't care less attitude encountered whilst trying to buy a replacement caravan, Autotrail's commitment of time to go through ideas with us and their 'can do' attitude was, to say the least, refreshing. Unfortunately, as Autotrails's business has grown, they have become reluctant to disrupt production lines and now they will no longer do any modifications.
We could not obtain the layout we favoured but we were 99 percent sure we could manage with the final layout and modifications we agreed.
The vehicle was finally delivered to Chelston's just before Christmas which was nearly 3 months later than promised. Chelston's at Banbury were most helpful in rectifying oversights and putting the finishing touches to the motorhome before delivery to ourselves on the 17th January 2001. Our live in report on how this acquisition met our expectations and performed over 10 years of use can be viewed here
In 2010 we decided to replace our much loved Mohican and on the 10th September we ordered a custom built model from RS Motorhomes. You can find more detail about this by clicking here.
We will continue to provide and update information about our current motorhome and travels and any other information we pick up 'en route' about other conversions for the non ambulant. For information on other conversions take a look at our 'Spotted' pages or visit our Useful Links page to see where you can find more information and help on the web.
Finally we all like to make life as easy and as convenient as our pockets will allow. Have a look at Our Tips for easier cost effective motorhoming.