Park News

Carnforth family's pride as park is crowned best in North West

Old hall Caravan park in the North West

Staff and the family owners of Old Hall Caravan Park near Carnforth in Lancashire are celebrating after winning a top tourism accolade from the AA.

The park has been officially named as the 2019 Campsite of the Year for the North West, beating scores of other businesses in the region to the title.

Awards given by the AA – based on guest reviews and a "secret shopper" visit by inspectors - are regarded as the Oscars of the holiday parks industry.

After putting its facilities, services and hospitality under the microscope, the AA's experts said that Old Hall was successfully meeting the gold standard in every respect.

Award-winning holiday park goes topsy-turvy for Comic Relief 

Staff dressed up for Comic Relief

Multi award-winning holiday park Cofton Holidays has raised vital funds for a global charity by encouraging its staff to try something new. 

As part of the Cofton Comic Relief Job Swap, staff at the South Devon holiday park gained experience in different areas of the family business, all in aid of Comic Relief. Thanks to the support of Cofton’s guests, the team raised £200 for Comic Relief, a well-known charity that strives to create a just world free from poverty.   

Kicking off the day, Grounds Manager Scott swapped his ride-along mower for a cash register, taking the place of Gerry as Cofton’s Shop Manager. Scott tried his hand at serving customers and taking deliveries whilst Gerry got to work clearing the many leaves across the 80-acre site.  

Eskdale Campsite in The Lake District Welcomes National Trust As New Owners

Eskdale Campsite in The Lake District

Savills, on behalf of the Merckel family, has sold Eskdale Campsite in Boot, Cumbria to the National Trust. The site sold from a guide price of £1.65 million.

The 8.5 acre (3.4 hectare) site located on the western side of the Lake District National Park has permission for 100 camping and motorhome pitches and 10 camping pods alongside the self-catering Camping Barn and a four bedroom farm cottage. A shop, laundry area and two children play areas are also provided.

Crieff Hydro's ultimate working couple to share their secrets to success at ScotHot

Crieff Hydro's Stephen & Fiona

Crieff Hydro Family of Hotels Chief Executive Officer Stephen Leckie and his wife Fiona, who is in charge of interior design at the flagship hotel Crieff Hydro, are heading to this year's ScotHot to share their tips and experiences on being a couple working together in the hospitality industry.

The Leckies will participate in a gameshow-style panel at the trade event on March 13 at the SEC in Glasgow, which showcases the food, drink, hospitality and tourism industry in Scotland. 

Stephen and Fiona met at Crieff Hydro in 1981 when Stephen, fifth-generation owner of the resort, taught Fiona how to water-ski. They married in 1990 and had their reception at Crieff Hydro.

Victorian bathing habits laid bare at Wales retirement park

Victorian baths at Ham Manor Park

When restoration work began on a Victorian fish pond at Ham Manor residential park near Barry recently, it caused more than a ripple of excitement among local historians.

For when the water had been drained, the pond revealed a secret that had been immersed for over a century – a rare wallowing pool built for the gentry of the times.

Up until then, the ornamental pond stocked with koi carp was – to all appearances - simply the attractive centrepiece of a walled garden at the Llantwit Major park.

But once emptied, restorers were amazed to find a sunken structure at the pond's centre, surrounded on its four sides with what looked like terraced stone benches.

Awards spotlight for Norfolk park declared Britain's best

Awards spotlight for Norfolk park declared Britain's best

Tourism chiefs from across the UK gathered recently to see Norfolk's family-owned Searles Leisure Resort officially crowned as Britain's Holiday Centre of the Year by the AA.

The Hunstanton park took the overall title in the AA Caravan and Camping Awards which was celebrated at a glittering ceremony at Warwickshire's Manor Hotel.

Stepping forward to receive the trophy was Paul Searle and his wife Vicky whose family first began welcoming campers over 60 years ago onto what was then a farm.

Searles has since grown to become one of Eastern England's largest and best-loved holiday centres.

It provides more than 800 holiday home and touring pitches, including luxury lodges to buy and rent, plus a raft of family-friendly attractions and outdoor activities.

Dartmoor family's joy as their park stars in tourism awards

Langstone Manor Park

A couple who swapped their cows for a camping and caravan park on Dartmoor say they are overjoyed at scooping two top tourism awards.

Jane and David Kellett, who own Langstone Manor Holiday Park near Tavistock, first gained the ultimate gold accolade in the Visit Devon Tourism Awards.

Their success in the touring park category of the competition saw them fast-tracked to the South West Tourism Excellence Awards which took place in February.

There they found themselves in the spotlight once again as judges named Langstone Manor as one of the top three touring parks in the whole of the West Country.

Good as gold – guests give thumbs up to Park Holidays UK

Family in a caravan at Park Holidays UK

Guests at Park Holidays UK say they enjoy a gold standard of service, and have put the group among a small elite of Britain's most outstanding holiday providers.

That's because, thanks to customers' comments, the company is now the proud bearer of the prestigious 2019 Feefo Gold Trusted Service Award.

Feefo's top-level award is made to companies which allow customers to post unedited reviews via its website, and then go on to achieve an exceptionally high scoring.

In 2018, said Feefo, almost all of the guests delivering their verdict on Park Holidays UK gave it a rating of 4.5 or 5 – the maximum score – based on their experiences.

Dog Instagram sensation experiences first pet friendly stay at a brand new holiday park in Norfolk

Family walking their dog

Insta-famous Cockerpoo Marley, who has more than 45,000 followers, has been the first four legged visitor to Darwin Escapes’ new holiday park in Pentney, Kings Lynn.

The multi million pound Norfolk Woods Resort and Spa officially opened on January 11th 2019 and is home to 80 letting lodges and 38 owners’ lodges. 

Owner Katie and her Cockerpoo, called Marley, from Liverpool were one of the first visitors to stay at the park and experience everything Norfolk Woods has to offer in terms of facilities for both owners and their furry friends.

The pair were able to get an exclusive first view of the pet friendly lodges available at the East Anglican resort and were able to explore the local area and find the best dog walks in and around the stylish and modern park.

Holiday Park Adds A Hint Of Luxury With HSBC UK Support

Holiday Park Adds A Hint Of Luxury With HSBC UK Support

A Pembrokeshire holiday park, Bonville’s Court Country Park, has secured a six-figure finance package from HSBC UK to develop a new luxury spa and holiday let in Saundersfoot.

The family-owned business will use the funding to develop a derelict colliery, originally built on the site in 1840, into a luxury spa suite. The upgrades to the park, due to complete in March 2019, will include building two new two-bedroom cottages and a modern penthouse suite to meet rising demand from couples for short stay breaks.

Groundwork renovations will also be made to five of the existing static caravan pitches on the site, which sits just 0.7 miles from the sea front and three miles from popular Welsh holiday destination, Tenby.

Bridge Leisure invests over £3 million in UK parks

Bridge Leisure invests over £3 million in UK parks

Bridge Leisure Parks has announced a £3.2 million investment programme across its nine UK holiday parks, including the introduction of new luxury caravans and pet friendly accommodation.

The biggest portion of that spend is focussed on Sand le Mere Holiday Village on the North Yorkshire Coast, where over £900,000 has been earmarked for the park’s development. The investment is being used to develop new pitches and purchase new self-catering caravans of various grades and improve the infrastructure.

Trevella Park in Cornwall will benefit from over £330,000 of investment which is being spent on new superior lake view caravans, new safari tents and a substantial refurbishment of the touring shower and toilet block. 

Blair Castle Caravan Park unveils new larger pitches

Blair Castle Caravan Park

Blair Castle Caravan Park, one of Scotland’s top four premier parks has expanded with the addition of five new larger pitches. The park has launched these spaces in time for the start of the season and in response to the growing trend of larger touring vehicles.

These larger pitches will complement the existing offering at the park, which includes 200 spaces and 18 static caravan holiday homes, each are fully serviced with a hard-standing surface. The introduction of the new pitches offers an extra meter totalling 9m, compared to the traditional 8m for the regular spaces.

Dorset park's holiday heroes earn 300 thanks for loyalty 

West Dorset Caravan Park

Three centuries of loyal service were celebrated at West Dorset Leisure Holidays recently when eleven employees were presented with special achievement awards.

The long-serving team members work across the group's five highly acclaimed Dorset parks, and received their accolades from directors Martin Cox and his wife Vanessa.
Together, the staff have contributed over 300 years of service in areas ranging from catering and hospitality to leisure services, customer support and wildlife conservation.

They were each presented with Exceptional Service Award certificates from the British Holiday & Home Parks Association, the park industry's professional body.

Bee-friendly Cornish park creates a buzz in green awards

Bee-friendly Cornish park creates a buzz in green awards

Staff at a Cornwall holiday park are flying high after honey bees, butterflies and birds helped wing them to a top environmental accolade from Professor David Bellamy.

The world-famous botanist has presented Stonerush Lakes near Looe with his prestigious David Bellamy Conservation Award at its top gold level.

It also received three extra commendations for protecting honey bees, managing its hedgerow habitats, and planting wild flowers.

The 28-acre park near the fishing villages of Polperro and Fowey was selected for the honours following an in-depth audit by David Bellamy's wildlife assessors.

Top loo award leaves Lancashire park flushed with pride  

Top loo award for Donkey Creek

Donkey Creek Farm Caravan Park on Lancashire's Fylde coast is officially one of the best place to "go" in Britain, according to judges of the annual Loo of the Year awards.

For the park's washrooms have been named as top platinum winners in the latest  Loo of the Year awards, bringing a chain of honour to the family-run business.
The prestigious accolade was made to Donkey Creek after the shower and toilet facilities provided for guests were "mystery shopped" by inspectors.

Celebrating the news of the award are Paul Lancaster and his wife Jane who opened the park last summer in a quiet rural location near the market town of Freckleton.