N2D Social Club Minibus now 'retired' ... with full honours.

We've now retired the N2D minibus from the Hull/Zeebrugge trips. We bought her in the summer of 2011 and then fitted her out with all the mod cons ... pride of which is the sound system . Then we added her 'colours' ... the smoking skulls (l'll add some pics later) along with various other rebel stickers such as the very large 'No Fear' stickers across the back doors. We announced to the then UKBA that we were going to do the baccy/alcohol runs from Hull to Zeebrugge. We even put up photos of our minibus on N2D website. This all was a direct challenge to UKBA (Border Force).

We've done 3 x 6 month 2 for 1 seasons along with a Eurotunnel trip. How many trips there have been in total is something l'd have to look up but needles to say ... there have been many. Our final trip ended today. Our passengers in all our trips have disregarded the guidelines with very few exceptions. The N2D minibus record is as follows :-

She has never been stopped and searched despite Border Force (UKBA) knowing her identity and for what purpose she was making the trips! Even today whilst waiting in line for passport control, the officers walking down the line looking in peoples vehicles avoided N2D minibus!

Further to this, not one of N2D's minibus many many passengers have had anything seized (passengers must disembark as foot passengers). Too be fair, we've abused the foot passenger ruling on numerous occassions too ...  with everbody disembarking with the minibus.

So, thanks to each and everyone of you who travelled with us at one time or another. You chose to stand up and counted and should be proud of yourselves. The N2D minibus was proud to have you but with that she is now retiring from active service ... with her honour intact!

We may see you ourselves on future trips but if we don't ... thanks, it's been fun!

lt was also fun when taking such as the Normandy Veterans, Submariners etc to many functions within the UK. We did this at cost to give something back to the ex-servicemen. l have to say that the Submariners are the craziest bunch l've ever come across ... and most of them are in their 70's and 80's.

There's also been trips top Rock Concerts, Rugby matches, shopping days etc etc for people of our community and it's always been at cost.

lt's been one hell of a ride ... laughter, music, drinking and yes, smoking have been the core of all the trips. You can smoke on our bus ... how's that for service? :) Alas, we have to move on :(

As l say, l'll put up some pics and if you see her on your travels ... touch your forelock to her ... she deserves it!


  1. The end of a glorious era!

    We were actually stopped several times, but the bus was never searched. Why? It's hard to avoid the obvious conclusion,

    I'm sorry to see this end, but it was always a lot of work, which is why I left it all to SH! I'm not volunteering to take it on!

    Apart from the work, there was the constant worrying about our travellers. We built up a good team of very competent and confident regulars, but the newbies often seemed to think they didn't have to do the preparation.

    There is no free pass against Customs. You have to do the prep. Have all your answers ready, and accurate. RECORD the interview, and TELL them that you're recording it. If they tell you you can't record it, they are lying. Get their lies on record.

    If you fail, your travelling companions will go down with you. There is no excuse for failing, just follow the advice on here and in the FORUM. If you do it right and an idiot still seizes your goods, you will win in Court.

    SH's life is getting increasingly busy, (and mine always was), but there are many experienced and helpful people on the forum. (You know who you are.)

    SH will agree that the forum posse have done a lot of the work for some time now. He gets more credit than he deserves? :-)
    (No, it was him that got it all moving, against the odds. I told him it was crazy!)

    He has never been a philanthropist or do-gooder. He and I just wanted some revenge on Customs for daring to try to rip us off. We certainly succeeded beyond all reasonable expectations!

    It will continue. We will still do all our buying in the EU, often with the gang. But neither of us craves responsibilty! We've raised our kids, and are now in disreputable old age / second childhood / male menopause, whatever.

    I assume SH will still put news on here, and the forum crew will help with enquiries.

    I love that bus! :-)

    1. There's a lot of us doing it, growing old disgracefully!

      That reminds me, I must go and open my birthday cards now......:-)


  2. I was on the Eurotunnel trip way back when. Unfortunately it was the only one I managed to participate in. I met some great people though and had a fabulous time (even if we were all exhausted when we got back). I salute both SH and Zaphod for having the brass balls to keep doing it, I wish I could have done more with them. But, they have shown the way, they have done an incredible amount of work on behalf of people for no reward - if only there were more like them in this world. I do hope to meet up with them both again at some point in the future but for now I will wish the bus a happy retirement and SH you forgot to mention the time she was assaulted in the middle of the night by a team of crack officers lol.

  3. I hope one day to see your bus born again...even if only briefly. Many smokers like me have never had the opportunity of going abroad with you all.

    I hope that one day I shall. For now rest easy.


"In the eyes of the Tribunal the review letter contained several preconceptions, prejudgments and non-sequiturs"

"the absurdity of this reason is demonstrated by simply stating it"

"We therefore find that Mr Sked misdirected himself as to the Policy in carrying out the review and his decision is therefore one that no reasonable review officer could have arrived at."

... commonly known here at N2D as 'Skeds' ... that is to say these are Judges comments regarding UKBA Review Officer Ian Sked's reasons for rejecting peoples appeals against seizures.

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