Episode 7 - Waterborne Caravan
Ben Spokes and wife Michelle have always been caravan fanatics, even running their own vintage caravan club. They found on a auction website a rare British relic…an amphibious caravan that needed rescuing – a Caraboat. She was named The Frog Prince and was made 48 years ago…but was a wreck.
For four months, engineer Ben tackles everything from engine problems, to re-building the fibreglass shell, re-wiring and updating the interiors. They want to renovate this antique, into a fun and functional holiday getaway vehicle…that can travel by road or by river.
With Ben getting stuck in with the engineering, his wife Michelle is in charge of making the upholstery, the finer details. But then Britain’s coldest winter for years reeked havoc and hardship as they tried to renovate the Frog Prince.
After months of hard work and graft, its ready to launch ceremoniously next to the famous SS Great Britain, in Bristol City harbour. But will this fragile fibreglass blast from the past actually float?
Over on the other side of the Atlantic…
Canadian Linda Nixon loves nature and the outdoor life. Her dream is to build a floating home and moor it at Maple Bay Marina on Vancouver Island. Her plan is to position the home so it overlooks her favourite nature reserve – Chisolm Island.
She commissions a local company to take on the huge challenge of building her a float home with massive windows. The extra weight of the glass requires complex engineering to stop the walls from collapsing. The 80 ton build proves to be a nightmare tow to its’ mooring; the slow pace puts the home right in the landing path of the island’s float planes and the difficult steering makes for a treacherous journey through the rocky shallows of the bay.
Finally Linda Nixon achieves her wildlife dream – a spectacular floating home nesting on the emerald waters of the bay, offering 360 degree views of the surrounding nature and local otters as new neighbours.