Monday, July 06, 2015

Adventure Golf in Dawlish Warren

Playing the Funder Park Adventure Golf course in Dawlish Warren, Devon.

Adventure Mini Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren

The 614th course visited on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour was the Funder Park Adventure Golf course on Beach Road in Dawlish Warren.

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
Exploring another course on out tour

The 18-hole Mini Golf layout was the fourth played on our tour of the South West of England, the 15th visited on the trip, and the 367th played overall on our tour.

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
Funder Park Adventure Golf course in Dawlish Warren

In our match on the Funder Park course on the 3rd June 2015 Emily scored 47 and I scored 44 to take the win on the tough course.

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren, Devon
One of the unique and interesting holes on the course

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
A view of the downhill ace opportunity from the tee

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
Emily launching into action

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
This hole took a lot of putts!

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
A pair of skulls

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
A Mini Golf Crocodile. Or Alligator
  
Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
One of the colourful downhill holes at Funder Park

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
Mouthy

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
Toothy

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
Emily at Funder Park

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
Quite the follow-through on this shot

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
The last hole is a tough one indeed. Just ask Emily

Adventure Golf course at Funder Park in Dawlish Warren
Another Mini Golf Shark!

For more information, opening times and prices check out Funder Park on Facebook.

Related blog posts:
Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
Mini Golf in the South West of England

Link:
- Funder Park on Facebook

Sunday, July 05, 2015

Mini Golf Putting at The Imperial Hotel in Exmouth

The 613th course visited on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour was the Putting Green we spotted on the front lawn of The Imperial Hotel in Exmouth, Devon.

Mini Golf Grass Putting Green at The Imperial Hotel in Exmouth, Devon
The Putting Green at The Imperial Hotel in Exmouth

The course was the 14th visited on our tour of the South West of England.

You can find The Imperial Hotel on The Esplanade, Exmouth, Devon, EX8 2SW.

Related blog posts:
Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
Mini Golf in the South West of England
- Exmouth
- Hotel

Saturday, July 04, 2015

Hotel Putting Greens in Sidmouth

The 608th and 609th courses visited on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour were a pair of Putting Greens on hotel front lawns in Sidmouth, Devon. They're next door to each other!

Minigolf Explorers Richard and Emily Gottfried in Sidmouth, Devon
The Belmont Hotel is on the right, The Victoria Hotel on the left

The 9th course visited on our tour of the South West of England was the grass Putting Green at The Victoria Hotel.

The Putting Green at The Victoria Hotel in Sidmouth, Devon
The Putting Green at The Victoria Hotel

You can find The Victoria Hotel on The Esplanade, Sidmouth, Devon, EX10 8RY.

The 10th course visited on our tour of the South West of England was the grass Putting Green at The Belmont Hotel.

The Belmont Hotel's Putting Green in Sidmouth, Devon
The Belmont Hotel's Putting Green

You can find The Belmont Hotel on The Esplanade, Sidmouth, Devon, EX10 8RX.

The pair of hotel miniature golf courses looked in fantastic condition and had great views of the sea.

Both hotels are part of the Brend Group. Towards the end of our road-trip we had a very pleasant stay in The Royal Hotel in Bideford, Devon. The hotel is right next to an interesting heritage railway. Worth a visit too.

The old halt and track bed of the Bideford Heritage Railway is at the back of The Royal Hotel. Can you spot Emily in the photo?
The old halt and track bed of the Bideford Heritage Railway is at the back of The Royal Hotel. Can you spot Emily in the photo?

Related blog posts:
Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
Mini Golf in the South West of England
Hotel

Links:
- The Victoria Hotel
- The Belmont Hotel
- Brend Hotels

The London Allergy and Free From Show 2015

A review of the The London Allergy and Free From Show 2015.

On Friday 3rd July I travelled to Olympia for the London Allergy and Free From Show. Last year was my first time visiting the event and I was interested to see what new products would be on show.

I was pleased to see some new gluten and wheat free ice creams available. On our recent two-week holiday around the south west coast of England I had only managed to find suitable ice cream tubs in two places! Fingers crossed the ice creams from Sweet Rebellion and Jollyum get stocked in more places as they were very tasty.

The Jollyum gluten free Ice Creams were very nice
The Jollyum Ice Creams were very nice

Earlier this year Emily visited Spain and brought me back some Sin Gluten goodies and so it was nice to see the team from Esgir at the show with their range of five gluten and wheat free products that are suitable for Coeliacs. I was so impressed that I bought some of the products.

A good haul from Esgir. I bought one of each of the products that include gluten free croutons, crunchy crumbs and choco snack sticks
A good haul from Esgir. I bought one of each of the products that include gluten free croutons, crunchy crumbs and choco snack sticks

I spotted some new gluten free beers from exhibitors including Estrella Damm Daura (with their new Märzen variety), the Wellington Bomber Porter beer from Glebe Farm, Outlook by Stringer's, and Hepworth & Co. While Green's have updated and refreshed its branding. I also got to try CELIA Lager's new Dark variety. Very nice it was too.

The brand new Märzen gluten free beer from Estrella Damm Daura. It tasted great
The brand new Märzen gluten free beer from Estrella Damm Daura. It tasted great

CELIA Dark was very nice. Martin from CELIA tells me it's a great beer to accompany autumn and winter meals too
CELIA Dark was very nice. Martin from CELIA tells me it's a great beer to accompany autumn and winter meals too

The updated branding on the Green's Gluten Free Beers range
The updated branding on the Green's Gluten Free Beers range

I enjoyed the new gluten free Wellington Bomber Porter from Glebe Farm
I enjoyed the new Wellington Bomber Porter from Glebe Farm

Check out my compilation blog post on all the gluten free beers, ales and lagers I've found since I was diagnosed with Coeliac Disease (the list currently stands at 89!).

Stringer's Outlook gluten free ale, one of the GF beers I'm yet to try
Stringer's Outlook gluten free ale, one of the GF beers I'm yet to try

It was also good speaking with the team from Can I Eat There? and finding out more about their allergy and intolerance aware restaurant listings and review website.

I did feel that too many of the exhibitors at the event were trying to sell sell sell, rather than doing something a bit different to engage with the audience. The show offers from Esgir were very good, while many other stalls were selling at not much less than a supermarket price. Couple this with the fact that it was baking hot, and while in London people may not want to carry around lots of shopping (including raw meat, or frozen products) so it would be really nice to see the brands trying something new.

Another thought is that because the show is catering to so many different audiences (all with their own varied needs - some lifestyle, some medical) there will be some clashes. This was evident in some of the exhibitors who I know have products that are not suitable for Coeliacs due to manufacturing processes and/or potential cross-contamination - but are labelled as gluten and wheat free. I think that if you're going to offer gluten and wheat free you should go 100%. No half-measures. Granted, there are people with wheat intolerance and non-Coeliac Gluten Sensitivity etc. who may be fine after consuming these products, but there is a larger proportion who won't be. It leaves a Coeliac like myself with a bitter taste, to be tempted with GF & WF packaging, only to be let down when reading the small print.

As a 'veteran' Coeliac I check, double check and then check again before I take a bite or a sip of anything. Having been glutened on a number of occasions I know it's not worth the risk, so I hope some of the rookie Coeliacs at the show didn't make any errors, or get carried away, in their sampling.

The next food fair I'll be visiting is the Home Counties Gluten Free Food Fair organised by the Herts & Mid Beds Coeliac UK Volunteer Group. Hopefully there'll be lots of new and interesting gluten and wheat free products on show and to sample there.

To round off a very pleasant day in London Emily and I had another brilliant gluten free meal at Honest Burgers.

Check out the Allergy Show London website for more information on the event.

Related blog posts:
Gluten Free
Coeliac
Funny things about being a Coeliac
- Home Counties Gluten Free Food Fair 2015
- The Allergy and Free From Show 2014 at Olympia
- Sin Gluten
- Gluten free beer

Links:
- Allergy Show London
Coeliac UK

Putting Green at Coburg Fields in Sidmouth, Devon

The 610th course visited on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour was the Putting Green at Coburg Fields in Sidmouth, Devon.

Putting Green at Coburg Fields in Sidmouth, Devon
A view of the first few holes at the Sidmouth Putting Green

Putting Green at Coburg Fields in Sidmouth, Devon
There are some bunkers placed around the Putting Green
 
Putting Green at Coburg Fields in Sidmouth, Devon
A view of the 14th Green

Unfortunately the location and price of the car parking in Sidmouth meant we couldn't spend as long at the seaside as we'd have liked. But the course looked in great condition and was being enjoyed by a number of other players.

You can find the Putting Green and other leisure facilities including tennis and bowls at Coburg Terrace, Sidmouth, Devon, EX10 8NH.

For more information, opening times and prices check out the Leisure East Devon website.

The Sidmouth Putting Green is a sister course of the Grass Putting layout we found at Seafield Gardens in Seaton.

Related blog posts:
Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
Mini Golf in the South West of England

Link:
Leisure East Devon website

Friday, July 03, 2015

Mini Golf at the Mediterranean Palace Hotel in Tenerife

My cousin Jason stayed at the Mediterranean Palace Hotel in Tenerife on his recent holiday and the view from his balcony included a miniature golf course!

The course is an 'Eternit' style of Miniature Golf, with some different obstacles to usual

Earlier this year my brother Christopher spotted a Minigolf course at Vista Alegre in Porto Cristo, Majorca, and last year my sister-in-law Jo found a Crazy Golf course in Puerto del Carmen, Lanzarote.

Links:
- Mediterranean Palace Hotel website
- MiniatureGolfer.com's list of Minigolf courses in Spain

Related blog posts:
- Spain
- Eternit Miniature Golf

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Clacton Pier

A revisit to Clacton Pier in Essex.

Seaside and minigolf adventurers Richard and Emily Gottfried on Clacton Pier
On the pier

Back in May 2011 we headed to Clacton-on-Sea, Essex to give the Adventure Golf course on the pier a play.

Playing minigolf on Clacton Pier in 2011. The helter skelter isn't there anymore. The rollercoaster is though
Playing minigolf on the pier in 2011. The helter skelter isn't there anymore. The rollercoaster is though

The course is no longer there, but on our recent revisit to the great seaside we spotted a banner on the pub at the dry land-end of the pier about the Pirate Bay Adventure Golf course

Banner for Pirate Bay Adventure Golf on Clacton Pier
The banner appears to be the same one that used to adorn the course on the pier

We had a good look around on our stroll along the pier but there's no sign of any miniature golf courses. There's still a lot of fun to be had there though.

If you win 100,000 tickets you can get one of these MASSIVE Minions in the Amusement Arcade on Clacton Pier
If you win 100,000 tickets you can get one of these MASSIVE Minions in the Amusement Arcade

You can also go tenpin bowling on Clacton Pier
You can also go tenpin bowling there

Check out the Clacton Pier website for more information on the rides, attractions and entertainment on offer. On this trip we spotted that the old metal tokens used for rides and games on Clacton Pier have been replaced by a new Fun Card. More info and prices are available on the pier website.

One of the old Clacton Pier tokens from my collection. I love the address of the pier - No. 1 North Sea!
One of the old Clacton Pier tokens from my collection. I love the address of the pier - No. 1 North Sea!

We're looking forward to returning to Clacton for more seaside fun in the future.

Related blog posts:
Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
Minigolf on Clacton Pier - Crazy World of Minigolf Tour - Course Played #217
Clacton-on-Sea
Mini, Crazy and Adventure Golf courses in Essex
- Piers

Link:
Clacton Pier website

Property of Machine

As a collector of amusement arcade, crazy golf and theme park ephemera and tokens I'm always on the lookout for interesting bits and pieces.

While en route to Clacton-on-Sea we stopped off in Colchester, Essex and spotted a coin stall at the street market. I had a quick look through and managed to find four tokens for my collection. Check out the pics below to see one of them.

A Loaned for Amusement Only, No Value, Property of Machine brass machine token
What sort of amusement?

A Loaned for Amusement Only, No Value, Property of Machine brass machine token
Look at that rampaging man! Is that The Machine?

My fellow collector Tim 'Ace Man' Davies sent me a link to Mals Machine Tokens which has got a LOT more details on tokens! You can see more on the token above on the Samson page.

Check out Tim's haul of Crazy Golf, Mini Golf, Adventure Golf and Putt-Putt tokens on The Crazy Golf Museum and MiniatureGolfer.com websites.

Related blog posts:
- Token
- Oliver 'The Machine' Florence

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

It's National Hot Dog Month!

July is THE month to celebrate Hot Dogs.

A tweet from Schar gluten-free alerted me to the fact that July is National Hot Dog Month - so I'd like to wish everyone a happy one.

With a Hot Dog Man at the Santa Fe Fun park in Swanage, Dorset (site of our 600th Crazy Golf course visit)
With a Hot Dog Man at the Santa Fe Fun Park in Swanage, Dorset (site of our 600th Crazy Golf course visit)

Check out my other Hot Dog-related blog posts.

Links:
- #NationalHotDogMonth
- Schar Gluten-Free website
National Hot Dog and Sausage Council website

Related blog posts:
- Hot Dog
- Sausages
- Gluten Free

Crazy Golf on BBC Three Counties Radio

Tune into the Three Counties Sport show on BBC Three Counties Radio this Monday.

I had a great time talking about Crazy Golf and playing some Mini Golf with Geoff Doyle and Luke Ashmead from the BBC Three Counties Radio Sports show at Tea Green Golf in Luton today.

The Crazy Golfers at Tea Green. From l-r Lester Coles, Geoff Doyle, Luke Ashmead and me
The Crazy Golfers ready for the BBC Three Counties Sport Challenge at Tea Green. From l-r Lester Coles, Geoff Doyle, Luke Ashmead and me

As part of the pair's regular sporting battles and forays into a wide-range of sports we had some matches on Tea Green Golf's recently refurbished miniature golf course.

Crazy Golf in Luton at Tea Green Golf
Tea Green Golf's Mini Golf course

We also discussed the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour and Emily and I hitting the landmark of 600 courses visited.

As well as some practice and training we had a doubles match and I refereed the showdown between the duo.

You can hear the show at 6pm on Monday 6th July and it'll be on the BBC Three Counties Radio website shortly after broadcast too. The video will be on their YouTube Channel on Monday.

In the meantime have a listen to last Monday's show. From the 16 minutes 20 seconds mark you can hear a bit about Crazy Golf.

It was great fun and as always it's nice to visit Tea Green Golf. There were some brilliant, and not so good, shots played and the results of the matches will follow...

I do enjoy listening to, and playing, Crazy Golf on the radio!

Check out my blog post about the upgraded Tea Green Mini Golf course too.

Crazy Golf in Luton at Tea Green Golf
The first hole Tea Green Golf's miniature course

Links:
- BBC Three Counties Radio website
- BBC Three Counties Radio Sports Show
- Tea Green Golf website
- Geoff Doyle on Twitter
- Luke Ashmead on Twitter
- BBC Three Counties Radio on Twitter
- BBC Three Counties Radio on Facebook
- BBC Three Counties Radio on YouTube

Related blog posts:
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
- Tea Green Golf

Jungle Adventure Golf at Hersham Golf Club

New Adventure Golf course opening at Hersham Golf Club.

My friend, rival, sometimes team-mate and fellow minigolf blogger Oliver 'The Machine' Florence tipped me off about a new Adventure Golf course opening on his patch soon.

Photo of the Jungle Adventure Mini Golf course at Hersham Golf Club in Walton on Thames, Surrey by Oliver Florence
A view of the new Jungle Adventure Golf course opening at Hersham Golf Club soon. I've not seen a caged gorilla like that on a miniature golf course before (photo by Oliver Florence)

I hear the course is being built by City Golf, the team behind a number of other Adventure Golf courses in the UK and around the world. We've played quite a few on our travels and enjoy the testing and tricky layouts.

We're looking forward to giving the course a play on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour. Perhaps we'll play for the Surrey Invitational Tournament or Oliver Florence Birthday Invitational titles on the new layout...

You can find Hersham Golf Club on Assher Road, Hersham, Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, KT12 4RA. Check out the Hersham Golf Club website for more information.

Related blog posts:
Surrey
Oliver 'The Machine' Florence

Links:
- Hersham Golf Club website
- The Minigolfer blog

Voakes Free From gluten free pies

I recently made an order for some gluten and wheat free pies from Voakes Free From. I'm glad I did.

Voakes Free From gluten and wheat free pies
Three of the five Voakes pies I bought (pork, 'special' and game). Two were scoffed before I had an opportunity to take this photo

I first found out about Voakes at the 2013 Home Counties Gluten Free Food Fair where I sampled a few of their products. I really liked the Special Pie - Chicken, Pork and Stuffing topped!

Check out the Voakes Free From website for more information on the range of gluten & wheat free products they offer. In addition to the pies you can get pasties, quiches, sausage rolls, black pudding, pastry, pasties and sausage rolls. All of the products are gluten and wheat free, and some of the products are also dairy free, egg free, soya free, vegan and/or vegetarian.

Link:
- Voakes Free From website

Related blog posts:

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Adventure Golf at The Pavilion Fun Park in Clacton-on-Sea

A revisit to the Augusta Masters National Adventure Golf course in Clacton-on-Sea, Essex.

Adventure Golf at The Pavilion Fun Park in Clacton-on-Sea, Essex
The Skull obstacle at the Augusta National Adventure Golf course in Clacton

On our recent day out in the great seaside resort of Clacton-on-Sea we visited The Pavilion Fun Park near the pier on Marine Parade West. The fun park is home to an 11-hole Adventure Golf course.

Adventure Golf at The Pavilion Fun Park in Clacton-on-Sea, Essex
You can find the Adventure Golf course at The Pavilion Fun Park

Adventure Golf at The Pavilion Fun Park in Clacton-on-Sea, Essex
There's some nice theming on the course

Since our last visit in May 2011 the fun park has undergone an upgrade and rebranding. It looks nice and fresh. We had a look around the amusement arcade and bowling alley and must say it looks really smart.

Adventure Golf at The Pavilion Fun Park in Clacton-on-Sea, Essex
A view of the Augusta National Adventure Golf course

The Augusta Masters Adventure Golf course was the 94th visited and played on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour back in May 2009.

Adventure Golf at The Pavilion Fun Park in Clacton-on-Sea, Essex
Playing hole 6 - The Skull - in Clacton

Adventure Golf at The Pavilion Fun Park in Clacton-on-Sea, Essex
Emily Putting at 'Augusta'

Check out The Pavilion Fun Park website for more information, prices and other attractions.

Panning for Gold at The Pavilion Fun Park in Clacton, Essex
The Panning for Gold and Gold Crusher machine at the fun park looked brilliant

On our visit to the fun park I also managed to buy some tokens for my collection of seaside ephemera, artifacts and exonumia.

Token from The Pavilion Fun Park in Clacton-on-Sea, Essex
The rides and games at The Pavilion Fun Park operate on a token system - 50p per token

Adventure Golf scorecard from The Pavilion Fun Park in Clacton-on-Sea
A scorecard from the Augusta Adventure Golf course in Clacton

Clacton-on-Sea is well worth a visit for tradition seaside fun, games and amusements. It's got a very good stretch of beach and some lovely seafront gardens too. I'm looking forward to visiting again.

Related blog posts:
Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
- Minigolf Course Visit No. 94 - Clacton-on-Sea (Augusta Masters)
- Clacton-on-Sea - Revisit - Augusta Masters Adventure Golf
Clacton-on-Sea
Mini, Crazy and Adventure Golf courses in Essex

Link:
The Pavilion Fun Park website