About us

We are Bill and Rosemary, both retired and about to embark on our second overland adventure, this time to South America. To the envy of our daughter and son in law, we plan to spend the coming months of our journey living in our Land Rover  ‘Moby’, using campsites and also camping wild, whenever possible.

Travel has always been in our blood. As a child, Rosemary was inspired by a friend of the family’s tales and photos of their life in the Middle East. Bill lived in Malta, Singapore and Gibraltar as a boy, due to his father’s job as a deep sea diver. In our early married years we always dreamt of getting an old Land Rover and exploring Africa.

We were fortunate to have the opportunity to live and work in Kuwait. During that time we spent most of our weekends enjoying the enormity, silence and space of the desert and our stay there also gave us the chance to explore more of the Gulf as far as Oman.  We returned to the UK in 1986 with 2 rescued cats and a very special arab stallion we bought from the Bedouin. Getting these much loved animals back to England was a story in itself, our horse being the most difficult. We finally resorted to driving him across Saudi and into Jordan, where we then lived for 6 months with him. We will always be indebted to the many people who became involved in helping us to finally fly him back to England.

Once back in the UK we settled down to some serious work. During that time, however, we never lost sight of our original African dream. Our bookshelves were full of other people’s adventures on this continent and we couldn’t wait to add our own! However, it wasn’t until 2005 that we had the freedom to turn our dream into reality.

We sold our house and put all our belongings into storage and took off in ‘Moby’ for nearly 2 years around Africa ( see our African Travel Diary for more details). Before leaving, we decided that our trip should also be used to try and help with the amazing work of a local charity that we had discovered, called Starfish Malawi. At the time of our visit to Salima in Malawi, we were able to help at Kaputu School which was being rebuilt at the time.

               

We also spent some time at the Glad Tidings Orphan Care, where over 240 orphans are now cared for.

  

  

Since 2003 when Starfish first began life following a visit to Malawi by its founder, Chris Knott, the work of this charity has broadened to include projects linked to education, health and sanitation, HIV and AIDS, farming and vocational training.It was a wonderful trip for us throughout the whole of this amazing continent, the people, animals and spectacular landscapes leaving lasting memories.

Since our return from Africa we have been leading a nomadic life, spending the winters in France house sitting for friends.

We loved our time in France and were nearly tempted to make one of the wonderful, stone houses our home. However, we have now set our sights on settling in Suffolk when we return from our latest trip.

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32 Responses to About us

  1. inkydogpress says:

    I hope the trip is fantastic and we are looking forward to reading your blog. We all miss you! Debbie and family xxx

    • defender95 says:

      Arrived safely after various types of transport ( buses,cars,plane and ferry ). Nice hotel and quite hot here 32 deg. Miss you all as well xxx

  2. Michael Hupton says:

    Enjoying your blog, quite blown away by it all and stunning photos. Enjoy, I’m sure you will have
    a happy Christmas. I’m fine. Love and best regards, Michael

  3. James Badiali says:

    Enjoy your journeys, I will be logging on every now and then to see your progress. Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year.

  4. Torsten and Christina says:

    Great journey and very nice pictures. Hopefully we will find some time to read all your reports. Hope you both are fine and the car as well? Remember its not a Toyota, drive carefully…Thank you for the presents for the kids at Xmas and also the greeting card for Timon. we had some quiet days with our family without work. Now the winter is back in Germany. Its cold and we have got some snow. In 2 weeks we have winter holidays, we will do ski run with the kids. Take care and all best wishes from us! Torsten, Christina, Sylvie and Timon.

  5. Michael Hupton says:

    Thanks for email, I’m fine. Glad things are going well, great postcard! Best wishes, Michael

  6. m says:

    Hi Bill and Rosemary! Have finally had a good long look through your website. Great write up and spectacular photos! Really enjoyed scrolling though but it has left me deeply nostalgic for life on the road! Will never forget that day in the Masai Mara! Take care, be safe, enjoy every second. Martin

    • defender95 says:

      Hi Martin, great to hear from you and thanks for your comments. Yes, great day in the Mara even though we ended up in the sticky black cotton mud! Hope all is well with you and hope your own travels will begin again soon. Keep in touch. Bill & Rose

  7. Michael Hupton says:

    Your photos are stunning. Loved the steam train wrecks and cacti in flower. Hope you get Moby fixed soon. Still intensely cold here, coldest March for 50 years. Happy Easter! Michael

  8. Cyriel & Petra says:

    Hi Rosemary & Bill,

    We follow your trip closely. Wow what a journey and what a landscape. Beautiful pictures.
    Here all is well. Star is lovely and I ride him frequently.
    He is now a gelding….
    Have a safe journey and enjoy this marvelous adventure.
    Bye, Cyriel & Petra

  9. Michael Hupton says:

    Thanks for card from Macchu piccu (ancient mountain!) I’m fine, enjoying a hot sunny summer here punctuated with usual thunderstorms. Had a good week in Yorkshire. Your pictures are wonderful, especially the flowers. Enjoy, Michael 31/7/13

  10. Hi Bill and Rosemary,
    I had to look up the word “envy” – and that’s definitely what I am as well… 😉
    beautiful pictures and interesting posts!
    enjoy your trip – as do we!

    if you want to refresh your German or just watch some pictures feel free to watch our blog:
    http://www.fliewatuet.blog.com

    bye,
    Stefan & Iris

  11. Hi Bill and Rosemary

    Great site & fantastic photo’s!

    We were wondering if we could share your stories on http://overlandsphere.com. We are a not for profit site promoting overland travel and currently have around 130 other overlanders contributing to the site, it would be fantastic to add yours,

    If you are interested do you mind registering on the site or alternatively you can just send us an email.

    Safe travels

    Martin & Nicole

  12. Michael Hupton says:

    Hi. Many thanks for wonderful bird card. I’m fine. Mild here, 14deg! Just been on a steam train
    excursion to York! Happy Christmas, hope all is well. Michael 16/12/13

  13. Cy & Jenn says:

    Wonderful to have met you two in Polebridge! We would have been happy to dig out the tea (and a bottle of scotch) if we’d had more time, but all the better reason to keep moving towards Victoria.
    We’ve emailed the Rover garage in Seattle to expect you, should you need oil filters or anything else (1142 NW 50th St, Seattle, WA 98107).
    Best of luck and thanks for letting us follow along on the blog – your adventures make us feel like it might actually be possible for us to go someday as well.

    • defender95 says:

      Hi Cy & Jen
      Although we didn’t get to the LR Dealer in Seattle ourselves, we recently were able to pass on your information to a German guy that we met in Canada also travelling in a Land Rover. They solved his problem and he was well pleased…many thanks!

  14. Mike Carroll says:

    Bill and Rosemary,
    It was great. Chatting with you in British Columbia and Alberta, Canada! Good luck on the rest of your journey and please look us up if you find your way to Sitka, Alaska within the next three years or in Clearwater, Florida after that.

    Mike, Colleen and Sophie Carroll

  15. Ecki says:

    Dear rose and bill
    Wonderful to meet you in canada
    I am the landydriver from germany whos going southbound with his daughter. In the moment
    I stuck close to victoria on vanc island.
    Have some smaller problems with
    Drive shaft but get some real good help
    From westshore springs 4×4, 1652
    Island highway victoria. They minimize
    The problem and did a wonderfull work
    Unfortunatelly i have to leave for picking up my girlfriend tomorrow in seattle

    It still needs some specialist work coz car always starts vibration during onload above 90 kmh.
    Do you know somebody in the upper washingt/oregon area with experience who could tell me more ?
    LR victoria did not have time whether parts…..( no comment)
    Thank you for a replie
    Best regards and greetings
    Ecki
    Info@ idler.de

  16. Pingback: Stuff from D. Oct. 13th 2014 | Darryl's Drive In Blog

  17. After reading this I think we will go to Copper Canyon! Thanks for the great story.

  18. Stuart and Peggy says:

    Greetings from Stuart and Peggy from Tulsa Oklahoma. Found your blog but cannot find anything after May 2014. We made it through Alaska and Canada and back to Tulsa in October. Sold our pop up camper. Would like to see pictures of your Canada and Alaska trip.

    • defender95 says:

      Lovely to hear from you both and glad you had a great trip. Yes I’m afraid I am behind with my blog, it has not always been easy always on the move and not always with electricity. I will send you a separate email with photos. The map you gave us was incredibly useful, many thanks. Bill & Rosemary

  19. Richard & Ann says:

    Hi Rosemary & Bill; we enjoyed meeting you both at KOA in Silver City, N.M.
    Thank you for your friendlyness & sharing some of your travel experiences in the short time we had to visit. We stayed Friday night at Roper Lake State Park near Safford, Arizona. Very nice!
    Now back home for a few days, then plan to head out again in our RoadTrek camper.
    safe travels & happy trails! Ann & Richard, Dewey, AZ

    • defender95 says:

      Hi Richard and Ann, we also enjoyed chatting to you both and thanks for the info which is always useful. You have a great vehicle for travelling and we wish you many more happy travels in your amazing country. We had a lovely day in the White Sands Desert…the light was perfect…we could have been amongst snow….another wonderful place! Will soon be in Texas. All the very best.

  20. cmh22 says:

    Very nice meeting you both and hearing of some of your travels. We will check out your website in depth later! Cheers and happy safe travels. We are heading north to Hot Springs NC to do some soaking!!!!

    • defender95 says:

      Great to meet you both also and to talk vehicle conversions, travel and horses! Have a great time riding in remote Utah Chris…..wish I could join you! And safe and happy traveling to John…..we loved your vehicle. We really enjoyed South Carolina, a very nice state and think the same so far of North Carolina where tomorrow we visit the Smoky Mountains before heading along the Blue Ridge Parkway. Hope you enjoyed the hot springs and we send you both our very best wishes!

  21. Eckart idler says:

    Hi rose and bill
    We have met in canada
    Me = defender owner from germany on the way down to south america.
    You replied several of my mails but in the past few months i dont get one …
    However : if this is reaching you, i am looking for some adresses for landrover
    Garages/repairs from nicaragua on down south
    Can you help me ?
    In august we will continue from mexico

    Thank you in advance
    Best regards
    Ecki

  22. Sandra and Alton Ramsay says:

    Hello, I’m sorry I didn’t read your blog until today or we would have invited you to stay with us while you were in Prince George B.C. Your description and facts about your experiences in Jasper and Banff are excellent. A lot of people just drive through but never stop and find out the local information. I’m looking forward to continue reading about your adventures. Safe travels . Sandra Ramsay ( met you in Bakersfield )

    • defender95 says:

      Thank you for that kind invite, what a shame that we didn’t manage to meet up again. Yes Banff and Jasper were quite spectacular, we enjoyed Canada very much. Thank you for your kind comment and we hope that you enjoy reading more about our travels.

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