Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Crazy Golf at Birchington Vale Holiday Park

A look at the Crazy Golf course at Birchington Vale Holiday Park in Kent.


Crazy Golf at Birchington Vale Holiday Park. Photo by Matt Dodd, 12th October 2019

A BIG thank you to our friend, minigolf rival and fellow Crazy Golf adventurer Matt Dodd for sending over some snaps from his visit to the Crazy Golf course at Birchington Vale Holiday Park in Kent.


Crazy Golf at Birchington Vale Holiday Park. Photo by Matt Dodd, 12th October 2019

Crazy Golf at Birchington Vale Holiday Park. Photo by Matt Dodd, 12th October 2019

The course is another where each of the holes is in the shape of a letter and the finished result spells out Crazy Golf. It certainly looks neat on the satellite image of the holiday park.


Crazy Golf at Birchington Vale Holiday Park. Photo by Matt Dodd, 12th October 2019
Z and Y

Visit the Birchington Vale Holiday Park website for more information.

Matt, Helen and their family have visited almost 200 miniature golf courses on their own Mini Golf travels. We've met up with them - and competed against them - on some of the courses too. Check out Matt's other guest minigolf blog posts.

Halloween in the USA - Part II

A look at some excellent Halloween decorations from the USA.


Emily was recently in the US and while there spotted some brilliant Halloween decorations.


Haunted PCs at Target in New Jersey
Haunted PCs at Target in New Jersey

How great is this Haunted Computer!



Unfortunately there wasn't enough room in her luggage to fit a desktop PC in.

Haunted Computer at Target in New Jersey
Only 35 bucks!

Haunted Computer at Target in New Jersey
The PC comes with its own built-in virus

There are now only 15 days to Halloween!


Check out my blog post about Halloween-themed minigolf courses and events to see what's happening.

Our friends at A Couple of Putts have also created the hashtag #Puttober to share all things Halloweeney at miniature golf courses.

Happy National Dictionary Day

Today is National Dictionary Day in the USA.


National Dictionary Day was created in honour of Noah Webster's birthday, 16th October 1758.


On our travels to 925 courses we've so far found 83 names for the game.


Crazy Golf course at Belton Woods in Grantham, Lincolnshire
If you count playing Zany Golf on the SEGA Mega Drive we've played minigolf courses starting with an 'A' and a 'Z', if not every other letter in-between

My favourite is 'Golff Gwyllt' which is one of a number of names for Crazy Golf in Welsh. It directly translates as 'Wild Golf'!

Golff Gwyllt at Anglesey Sea Zoo, Isle of Anglesey
Golff Gwyllt at Anglesey Sea Zoo, Isle of Anglesey

Emily's favourite name for the game is the UK classic of 'Crazy Golf'.

Crazy Golf was invented in Skegness, England in 1926
Crazy Golf was invented in Skegness, England in 1926

What's your favourite name for minigolf?

Related blog posts:
- What's in a name - from Minigolf to Crazy Golf
- Types and Variants of Miniature Golf
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour

- Minigolf etc. - English to Welsh translations

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Halloween in the USA - Part I

A look at some brilliant Halloween decorations from the USA.


Emily was recently in the US and while there spotted some superb Halloween decorations.


Inflatable Halloween decorations at Target in New Jersey, USA
How cool are these inflatable decorations!

Unfortunately there wasn't enough room in her luggage to bring any back to decorate our house with.


I did however get some packs of the new Garbage Pail Kids Halloween-themed Revenge of Oh the Horror-ible trading cards!

Garbage Pail Kids Halloween-themed Revenge of Oh the Horror-ible trading cards
These are super trading cards - with 24 cards in the big packs!

There are now only 16 days to Halloween!

Check out my blog post about Halloween-themed minigolf courses and events to see what's happening.

Crazy Golf at Birdworld in Hampshire

A look at the Crazy Golf course at Birdworld in Hampshire.


Crazy Golf at Birdworld Hampshire. Photo by Matt Dodd, October 2019

Many thanks to our friend, minigolf rival and fellow Crazy Golf adventurer Matt Dodd for sending over some snaps from his visit to the Crazy Golf course at Birdworld in Hampshire.


Crazy Golf at Birdworld Hampshire. Photo by Matt Dodd, October 2019

Unfortunately it was closed. Matt said it's never been open on the three times he and his family have been there.

Crazy Golf at Birdworld Hampshire. Photo by Matt Dodd, October 2019

Visit the Birdworld website for more information.


Matt, Helen and their family have visited almost 200 minigolf courses on their own Crazy Golf travels. We've met up with them - and competed against the pair - on some of them too. Check out Matt's other guest minigolf blog posts.

Monday, October 14, 2019

Benches in Middlewich, Cheshire

A look at some benches on the Middlewich Branch of the Shropshire Union Canal.


Bench in Middlewich, Cheshire
Welcome to Middlewich. Please take a seat

I was in Middlewich on Saturday and as it was the my first time in the small town I had a good wander around.


On my walk I found the Middlewich Branch of the Shropshire Union Canal.


Middlewich Branch of the Shropshire Union Canal
A nice spot for a sit down. If it wasn't tipping it down that is

The thing that really caught my eye was this unusual bench next to the towpath.

A narrowboat bench
A narrowboat bench

A narrowboat bench in Middlewich
The seat part is meant to depict a cargo of salt

A narrowboat bench in Middlewich
A view looking north

As it was raining quite heavily I didn't get to walk too far alongside the canal, but on my wander I did spot some other benches of interest.

A bench by the canal in Middlewich
Can you spot the bench in this photo

A bench by the canal in Middlewich
There it is

A bench by the canal in Middlewich
What a view

A bench by the canal in Middlewich
Another nice bench. This one depicts the three locks at Middlewich

The Floodgate is about to open

A new indoor activity entertainment centre is opening in Digbeth, Birmingham.


The Floodgate social sports and games bar is opening soon in Digbeth and will offer people the chance to play the game of Pit-Pat.


Pit-Pat is similar to minigolf, but is played on elevated tables where you use cues to play the ball, rather than putters.


Pit-Pat crazy snooker in Littlehampton
Playing the only other Pit-Pat course to have previously been in the UK

The Floodgate opens at The Custard Factory in Digbeth, Birmingham on Friday 1st November.

The Pit-Pat layout at The Floodgate will be the UK's first indoor Pit-Pat and the only playable course. Until a few years ago the UK's first and only other Pit-Pat layout was on the seafront at Western Putting on Banjo Road in Littlehampton.

Pit-Pat crazy snooker in Littlehampton
The now sadly closed Western Putting in Littlehampton was home to a Pit-Pat layout, Crazy Golf and a grass Putting course

Pit-Pat crazy snooker in Littlehampton
A view of the UK's first Pit-Pat course

Here's me scoring a two in a crazy way!


Emily scoring a two.


Shooting through a hoop.


I first saw the game of Pit-Pat aka Hindernis Billard while on a minigolfing trip to Austria in March 2010.

Askoe Wien Pit-Pat obstacle billiards in Vienna, Austria
Pit-Pat Hindernis Billard at the Askoe Wien Wasserpark in Austria

Askoe Wien Pit-Pat obstacle billiards in Vienna, Austria
Pit-Pat Hindernis Billard at the Askoe Wien Wasserpark in Austria

Askoe Wien Pit-Pat obstacle billiards in Vienna, Austria
Pit-Pat Hindernis Billard at the Askoe Wien Wasserpark in Austria

As well as Pit-Pat the indoor competitive socialising venue will feature a curling rink and baseball batting cages.

We're looking forward to a Crazy World of Minigolf Tour visit to The Floodgate.

Visit The Floodgate website for more information, opening times and prices.

Check out my other Pit-Pat related blog posts.

Pizza Luigi takeaway in Blackpool

Spotting a Luigi's pizza takeaway in Blackpool.


Pizza Luigi in Blackpool

On my recent trip to Blackpool I was surprised to see the Pizza Luigi takeaway on Dickson Road!


Pizza Luigi in Blackpool
Pizza Luigi in Blackpool

Pizza Luigi in Blackpool
Mmmm, Calzone

I've seen a number of Mario takeaways, and another Mario's on Foxhall Road in the town that features both Mario and Luigi on the sign in the window. But this was the first where Luigi was on his own.


Interestingly, Pizza Luigi is opposite Mario's!

Mario's takeaway on Dickson Road in Blackpool
Mario's takeaway on Dickson Road in Blackpool

I've also seen a Mario mini market in LevenshulmeMario and Luigi ice cream vans in Buxton and HathersageMario movers in Newcastle and Mario's takeaway in Barnsley.

Mario's takeaway in Blackpool

Spotting a Mario's takeaway in Blackpool.


On my recent trip to Blackpool I spotted Mario's takeaway on Dickson Road!


Mario's takeaway in Blackpool
Mario's takeaway in Blackpool

Mario's takeaway in Blackpool
Mario's takeaway in Blackpool

Mario's is opposite Pizza Luigi!


Pizza Luigi takeaway on Dickson Road in Blackpool
Pizza Luigi takeaway on Dickson Road in Blackpool

I've also seen a Mario mini market in LevenshulmeMario and Luigi ice cream vans in Buxton and HathersageMario movers in Newcastle and Mario's takeaway in Barnsley.

There's another Mario's takeaway on Foxhall Road in Blackpool. That one features both characters on the window.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

The Cheshire Coeliac Meeting, gluten free cakes and sausage rolls

A day out doing gluten free things in Cheshire.


Coeliac Group Meeting in Middlewich, Cheshire
The bunting was out for the Coeliacs of Cheshire

I attended the Cheshire Coeliac Group Meeting in Middlewich yesterday and had a nice afternoon buying cakes, chatting to fellow coeliacs and watching the cooking demonstrations.


Gluten free cakes from Lottie's Bakehouse
I bought a fair few gluten free cakes to see me through the week

Chris from the Cheshire Coeliac Group and Cakes by Noah getting to grips with Genius Puff Pastry for his gluten free sausage rolls
Chris from the Cheshire Coeliac Group and Cakes by Noah getting to grips with Genius Puff Pastry for his gluten free sausage rolls

Gluten free sausage rolls
Here's some Chris made earlier

Gluten free cakes from Lottie's Bakehouse
I bought a couple of the doughnuts from Lottie's Bakehouse - one sugar coated and one cinnamon flavour. They were both quickly scoffed

I also had a couple of wins on the raffle!

As I'd bought a lot of delicious cakes from Lottie's Bakehouse the cooking demonstration by group organiser Chris was perfect, as it gave me inspiration to do some savoury baking myself. Something I haven't done in many years. Partly because my view of food and cooking changed when I was diagnosed with Coeliac Disease, but also because Emily is such a superb cook.

Gluten free sausage rolls
Before cooking here are the rather rustic looking sausage rolls. I used Jus-Rol gluten free puff pastry and Morrisons gluten free pork chipolatas

Gluten free sausage rolls
After baking!

Gluten free sausage rolls
In his cooking demo Chris had suggested putting other ingredients in with the sausage meat. The three on the right are plain sausage rolls, while the one on the far left is filled with Tewkesbury Hot Mustard, the next one was Cheddar Cheese and the next one was pork and Bramley apple flavour in a nod to a Bedfordshire Clanger

Gluten free sausage rolls
They were all delicious. Even Emily said so!

Check out the Cheshire Coeliac Group on Facebook for more information.

More info on Coeliac Disease, its effects and how it must be treated with a strict and life-long gluten free diet can be found on the Coeliac UK website.

Princess Parade Crazy Golf course update

An update on the Princess Parade Crazy Golf course project in Blackpool.


Princess Parade Crazy Golf course in Blackpool
A look at the Princess Parade Crazy Golf course

Earlier this year the teams at Blackpool Fulfilling Lives and Blackpool and the Fylde Street Angels joined forces to refresh and reopen the Princess Parade Crazy Golf course on Blackpool's North Shore.


Princess Parade Crazy Golf course in Blackpool
How the course looked in May this year

Princess Parade Crazy Golf course in Blackpool
The area has been given a massive clean up by the project team

The minigolf project is helping people in Blackpool by giving them the chance to work on the Crazy Golf course so it is playable and then staffing it for the season. It's a wonderful plan to give people the opportunity to receive work experience, while also bringing an historic, but disused, minigolf course back to life.


Princess Parade Crazy Golf course in Blackpool
We had a play of some of the holes at the course last Thursday and it's coming along nicely

Princess Parade Crazy Golf course in Blackpool
The course will retain as many of the original obstacles as possible, with repairs made to damaged elements

It's a pleasure to be a part of the project and I've enjoyed meetings and calls with the teams at Blackpool Fulfilling Lives and Blackpool, the Fylde Street Angels, Blackpool Council and the Blackpool Civic Trust since hearing about the endeavour.

Princess Parade Crazy Golf course in Blackpool
I'm really looking forward to seeing and playing the course when it opens for business in April next year

Last week I revisited the course and met with colleagues and volunteers who are doing a superb job. The course and surrounding area are looking in a much improved condition to when I last saw it in person back in May.


More information on the project can be found on the Blackpool Princess Parade Crazy Golf Facebook Group and via Blackpool Fulfilling Lives and Blackpool and the Fylde Street Angels.

It'll be wonderful once the course is up and running again. We've got 21 postcards showing the North Shore Crazy Golf course with ten different views. Some of the cards have been postally used, while others are unused. It's great to see the photos of it in its heyday.

Blackpool Crazy Golf course, North Shore. PT18819 by Photo Precision Limited. Unused
Blackpool Crazy Golf course, North Shore. PT18819 by Photo Precision Limited. Unused

The card below is the earliest posted example we have of the course. It was sent to Manchester on the 4th June 1969.

Crazy Golf Course and North Pier, Blackpool postcard. The Photographic Greeting Card Co Ltd. London. Posted to Manchester
Crazy Golf Course and North Pier, Blackpool postcard. The Photographic Greeting Card Co Ltd. London. Posted to Manchester