Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Our New Trailer

One of the things we have really needed for quite a long time is a trailer. We recognised this 2 years ago when my parents were in France, and they bought us half a towbar. This was useful, but the aim has always been to buy a trailer so we didn't need to drive to Chatellerault to hire one whenever we had stuff to take to the dechetterie.

We now own a trailer. It isn't a big trailer - 150cm x 100cm (5'x3'). It is this small so that we don't have to register or insure it - it is covered by the registration and insurance of the car. If it had a gross weight of 500kg we would have to get a Carte Gris and do the bureaucracy thing. This provided us with a slight problem.

Most small trailers you can buy in the UK are made in France. In France, they have compliance plates giving a gross weight of 499kg, but for some reason when they are imported into the UK they have a compliance plate for 500kg. We wanted to buy the trailer in the UK because it means I could; (a) speak the language (more or less) of the person selling the trailer, and (b) tow the trailer over to France with stuff in it. It also helps that trailers are cheaper in the UK than in France. After a whole week of research we eventually found someone who imports French trailers with French compliance plates.

So - we finally found a suitable trailer - and here it is!

As you can see, it is a tipper, so if I can remember how to reverse a trailer (it's been a long time since I was an expert on a boat ramp) emptying the trailer at the dechetterie should be a piece of cake. And when I am finished using the trailer, it can be stood on end out of the way.



  1. You are making me very jealous, Simon. How much did the tow bar or trailer hitch cost? Did the Renault dealer install it?

  2. Wow, big and shiny too !! Felicitations !! You can't beat having the proper tools for the job.

  3. Ken. The towbar and wiring, etc, cost just over 400Euro. It was done at our local Renault garage. Both our local Renault dealers quoted about the same amount.

    Anon. I will check the definition of "big" and get back to you. Where I come from the ashtrays in the cars were bigger...

  4. Whoa, good looking trailer! I am sorry I have not e-mailed you as I promised. My busy (thankfully)husband (engineering work still plentiful even in our recession)did find a moment two weeks ago to eye your bathroom plans and thought your ideas were sound but was highly concerned with the rolling beams and said without truly seeing with his own eyes, your entire home he would be hard pressed to give his expert opinion. so, of course i gently asked him if that meant we just HAD to venture back to Preuilly to see and the answer I knew would come was no, not this year. So here's hoping the bathroom construction goes according to plans and that one day, if I am not presuming too much, we may be able to gaze at the wonder in person. Blessings to you both.

  5. Ken: I don't know whose car Simon paid €400 to have a towbar fitted on, but ours cost €265 (we've just checked the receipt – I won :-))

    Jenny: we'll try and make the project sooooo interesting that he just has to come and look for himself :-)

  6. I have to say that is one shiny trailer, and very slickly demonstrated.
    I've sometimes thought we should get one and perhaps one day we will, but so far I've found it hurts my back less if I can find someone younger and fitter who already had one......
    Still a trip to the dechette is always entertaining at LGP - there's a touch of the Last of the Summer Wine about it.

  7. Nick: We have a choice of two dechetteries, both run by the same man. They are the neatest, most organised places imaginable and we are tremendously impressed by Charly's energy and tidiness. Going to the tip is always a friendly social encounter too.