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Writing to your MP...A result!


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I less than 3 months magic has occurred!

My letter to my MP:

This summer my wife and I are unlikely to be travelling abroad for our holidays and it caused me to ask myself why it had become such a "must do" We own a motor caravan and would love to consider holidaying in the UK but sadly touring in season is SO difficult.


Fixed costs, principally business rates, have persuaded campsite owners that static caravans are a safer bet than touring pitches resulting in short supply. So... Each year we take our motorcaravan to Europe. The French (Aires) German (stellplatz) in particular are very welcoming with specialist provision for motorcaravans or "camping cars" or "whonemobiles" My purpose in writing is to suggest the UK does something similar.


Aires and stellplatz are not camping sites, rather parking areas with water and waste facilities. They are not for tents or touring caravans. Sometimes a charge is made eg le touquet €23/day. Some small villages provide free parking to encourage visits to local commerces.


Camping cars in France and Germany are a a way of life. The tourist authority in Brittany publishes a map extolling the virtues of its roads being especially suitable for "campingcarists" Many French farms belong to "France Passion" a scheme attracting camping cars to park overnight and encouraging the purchase of locally produced food and wine.


Other countries like Norway, Greece and Portugal are very tolerant of "wild camping" Sweden encourages it. We love the freedom this provides us as we prefer to not plan too far ahead and we also enjoy the feeling of involvement in the area. This year with foreign travel likely to remain off limits can I try to make the case with you for relaxing or reviewing the camping and caravaning acts? These prohibit landowners from allowing camping on their property without planning permission.


But just imagine the filip to eg pub landlords if they could permit and charge for o'night parking on their land, (and what nicer for the tourists after a day's driving than to sink a couple of pints without having to worry about being over the limit.) I'd propose a similar benefit to

The National Trust which is £250million down on entrance fees already this year and sports venues too. In fact any organisation with large car parks not used overnight.


Some UK local authorities are blazing the trail eg Canterbury have an overnight camper parking zone in the P&R but it is uncommon. The campaign for a change in the law begins with the slogan stay in the UK.. Protect the hospitality industry. Save money.


MY MP replied

A super slogan! Although with a mind on local businesses, I might say, spend money in Dover & Deal. Thank you for writing to me. It is a very good idea to encourage caravan and camper van travel this summer. I will raise that with Ministers and the council.


AND the magic

please see attached pix. So next time you need an overnight near Dover, - consider the Valiant Sailor at Capel Le Ferne




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I applaud your positivity. I have an MP as a friend (they do have friends) and would only point out that you have received a courteous reply that may or may not have been written by one of your MPs assistants although would one hopes have been approved by your MP themself. Your MP has not actually promised to do anything about it other than mention it to somebody. My friend ensures that all emails to him are replied to, even the offensive ones. I'm not suggesting that your letter will have zero impact, simply that it may be quickly forgotten about given the more important priorities facing the country.
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Perhaps if enough people write to enough MPs we might get their attention - I've written to mine and I no longer have a van!!


The main problems when similar schemes have been trialled have been litter / waste (all types) dumping and long term unauthorised stays by 'undesirable' and irresponsible travelling people who have no respect or gratitude for the facility provided for which the land owner or local authority has to pick up the bill for clean up and restitution.


I'm out of touch with how good they are now but Brit Stops UK and UK Pub Stopovers used to be two schemes that worked well enough and perhaps encouraging establishments tojoin such an organisation might be more productive?


They are of course not free to join, but used to be free to use, and many freeloaders hate the thought of paying for anything which tends to discourage them from invading an owned and occupied area like a farm or pub car park / garden or farm shop etc.

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Guest pelmetman

Good luck to the OP ;-) ........


We rarely Moho in the UK nowadays......and if we do...... we dont go anywhere popular 8-) .......



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RE short supply of pitches, GF decided 'we' needed to get away for a few days last week, bearing in mind we rarely go anywhere in school holidays and had seen it was going to be hot so wanted a shady pitch, I somewhat apprehensively phoned up the Sandringham C&CC site, "yes we can fit you in" "OK will be there in 6 hours". Yes there where a lot of units there, but we where in a 'corner' of 5 unserviced grass pitches, the first night one other van, second night on our own, Friday night one other van, could have stayed longer, but needed to be home Saturday evening. Is France any quieter in peak season near the coast? I know Netherlands wasn't last time we where there on a sunny weekend in mid season.
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