An owners description:
It's a Holdsworth Romance HT2 (which we assume means High Top, 2 berth), 2.0 Petrol. We're really impressed with the versatility of the (positively tardis-like) layout: individual seats,and/or long seat along one side, or L-shaped lounge, with swivelling passenger seat at the front, with a concertina curtain dividing it from the kitchen and toilet facilities at the back that fits into a slim cupboard when not in use. (It needs to for safety, as it's next to the hob and grill.).
For our use (and since I took the picture), I've replaced this with a quilted curtain that reaches down to just below the bottom of the bed base. This was for two reasons: Firstly, at night time I wanted the curtain to be temporarily fixed on the opposite side of the van (by the loo), for maximum privacy for night-time excursions. In the daytime this would be in the way of the additional worktop space, so we'd still want to make use of the storage cupboard for it. Secondly, Jazz (the dog) has decided that the ONLY place for any self-respecting dog to sleep is with his nose tucked just under the bed, and he's remarkably difficult to move when he's half-asleep, so a curtain that doesn't reach to the floor allows us privacy without chopping his nose off. Then all we have to do is try not to tread on him in the night!
For night time use, we can have 2 singles, a small double, or a large (full van-width, i.e. 5'3") double bed.
A) 2 single beds: Flip the tops of the rear seats over onto the slide-out legs, slide the driver and passenger seats forward, wind the backs down, and then slide back to meet the rear cushions, holding them in place. NB: The front seats have two slider levers, one under the front of the seat and the other on the side. Use the front one first, then complete the move with the slider on the side.
If you do it the other way round, you won't be able to reach the front lever to complete the forward slide.
B) Small double bed: Slide the left hand rear seat over to next to the right hand one, adjust front seats and flip the seat tops out as for single bed, and use the middle fill-in section with the legs and cut-outs for the handbrake and gear lever
C) Large (5'3") double start as for single beds, but then wind the driver and passenger seat backs up a bit. Then slot the rear fill-in into place [you'll need to make sure the left hand rear seat is fully to the left for this to fit snugly] Extend the legs on the forward fill-in section and slot into position.This section never really looks as though it fits properly, but that's the way it is. [It's as this stage that we used to keep forgetting that you need the seat backs up a bit for this to fit.] Wind the seat backs down again. Check that the seats are far enough back to trap the cushions behind in place Put the central cushions in place [the handbook recommends putting the largest one at the head end, i.e. towards the back of the 'van]
It doesn't look it from the picture, but this actually makes a remarkably comfortable bed. I'm a long time a back sufferer (who works in a shop selling back-friendly furniture, so I don't put up with furniture that causes problems) and was dreading waking up from our first night in the 'van, but as it turned out I was fine. I've had far worse night's sleep in "proper" beds.
We have on occasion used a mattress topper on it which certainly improves it, but it's difficult to find somewhere to store it in the 'van, so unless we can find something easier, we'll do without
So, we got as close to our dream layout as we ever thought we were likely to get ... and all within our budget. Of course, it's old (a 1987 D reg), so it has its problems - which we were expecting of course, but on the whole, we're really pleased with it. - We think we've found a bargain.
An owners review of his Holdsworth Elevating Roof Romance:
"Romance"........not quite the ideal name for a 'van when 2 hetrosexual males are using it to go hillwalking for a weekend!!! Its a 1986 with a 1647cc petrol, which performs surprisingly well for it's size. If kept in tune it is capable of cruising at 65 mph and returning between 25 - 27 mpg. The beauty of these old engines is that they are pretty bulletproof and can be kept in tune by adjusting the points, ignition timing, carb and tappets :-)
The pop up top is cleverly designed, it's weatherproof and gives a comfortable double bed, which I use most of the time.
The seating arrangement can be either 2 single rear forward facing seats or made up into side facers. As there is usually only 2 of us using the 'van then I remove the nearside seat assembly completely (simple catch device) and use the swivelling front passenger's seat and a double seat set up to face the hinging side door.
Although 18 years old the interior has held up well and is testimony to Holdsworth's quality build.I've really no gripes with the 'van.........the layout makes good use of the available space which houses a 2 hob cooker, eye level grill and 2 way fridge.
Like the Romance, the Rainbow was available in either Hightop or elevating roof configuration but I only have details of the hightop available. If you have and elevating roof Rainbow and would like to see it featured here then please get in touch with the webmaster via the email page
To the layman's eyes, the main external difference between the Romance and Rainbow is the roof - the hightop Romance uses the hightop van with full height rear doors and the two distinctive windows over the windscreen whereas the Rainbow uses a standard roof van, standard height doors and a fibreglass hightop roof
Again we have an actual owner's description of his own van:
The interior has a forward facing seat on the passenger side underneath which there is a large water tank which can be filled directly with top entry or via a filler cap on the vans side. The gas bottle locker is also in this ompartment and holds two camping gas cylinders which are used in sequence to power the hob, fridge and grill.
There is a wardrobe at the rear of the van on the driver's side beside the 3 way fridge which has plate storage above and a small locker below.
The sink and hob are at the rear of the van on the passenger side with a double cupboard beneath.
When closed, the curtains cover all the windows and extend around the windscreen on a rail. The two single beds are made by sliding the front seats forward on the van rails and then the whole thing slides forward again almost up to the dashboard on a second set of rails. The seats do not swivel. The beds are approx 6ft in length and I can sleep comfortably at a slight angle (I am 6ft 2).
There is a locker under the sideways facing bench seat on the drivers side which holds the extention boards for the beds and the table top.
There is a lift and fold compartment under this seat which also holds a Thetford Porta Potti. The table leg clips into a holder in the wardrobe.
The electric hookup external connection flap is on the drivers side and the petrol filler on the passenger side. The electric circuit breakers are in the wardrobe. There is a large locker above the drivers compartment and one either side above the sink and wardrobe at the back of the van with shelves completing the arrangement between them. There is a rooflight with a built in fly screen towards the rear of the van and 3 strip lights , one above the bench seat, One above the sink and one on the rear wall above a mirror.
There are also 2 sockets , one on the bench seat and one to the left
of the hob at the back of the van. The rear doors open and the spare wheel is stored in a space beside the rear kitchen unit. The jack is under the bonnet. There is a sliding window behind the hob which is perfect for the kettle to steam out of!
The water drain tap is directly under the water tank under the vehicle and the waste water pipe is clipped up under the passenger rear wheel arch. The main access is via the sliding side door. There is a floor operated switch for the sink tap which delivers cold water only.There was an option for a factory fitted propex heater but my van does not have this.
The van cruises comfortably at 65mph and is fairly stable even is strongish crosswinds on fen roads.
The Ranger was the only coachbuilt that Holdsworth made on the Trafic chassis, and were also the only main converter to use the Rear Wheel Drive variant of the Trafic. All other converters ignored the RWD chassis and only used the front wheel drive version.
The petrol models have a reputation for being heavy on fuel but I don't believe that they are any worse than other coachbuilts of the same size in that era.
The light and airy spacious interior was considered very modern in it's day.
The Ranger is still a very nice van even by today's standards.
At the rear of the van is the wardrobe and washroom on the offside with the kitchen area, including 4 burner hob, oven, 3 way fridge and sink (with hot and cold water) on the near side.
Toilet Compartment is equipped with cassette toilet,
shower, wash hand basin and bathroom cupboard
The Rangers L shaped lounge seating converts into a double bed.
The webmaster has very little personal knowledge of the Ranger and would appreciate some input from owners of these fine motorhomes
The San Remo is a 2-berth van, having two single beds.The model featured is a hightop conversion although browsing on the internet has revealed that there are elevating roof San Remo models too.
Both cab seats move forward on runners and the nearside rear folds out. The bed board fits in behind both seats.
The smaller off side back cushion fits the near side bed base.
There is a blind which pulls down between the bed and the kitchen area for privacy.
On the near side you have a unit with sink and double burner and grill, overhead locker, inboard water tank (35 litres) with electric pump to tap and two Camping Gaz 907 cylinders which fit under the near side rear seat.
On the off side rear you have a locker with the fridge on top, a locker for plates and cups and then a wardrobe. Under the rear bench seat is a large storage locker and storage for a Porta Potti 235
Over wardrobe door is the Zig unit, and in the bottom of the wardrobe is 12v charger and RCD consumer unit.
Waste water tank is slung under the vehicle.
Access to the vehicle is either from the sliding side door or through the rear doors
The van's external dimensions are 15' 4" long and 6' 3" wide