Latest UK Motorhome Stopover News
For listings see our UK Stopovers page
See below for a resume of the legislation regarding Stopovers
March 2013 Updates
This year there are a few minor changes, a couple of deletions, and we are happy to report, a few new locations to include!
Major news is that Torrington District Council, in North Devon, have authorised overnight stays by motorhomes in several of their car parks:
From the 15th March the following car parks will permit the overnight parking of motor homes at the rate of £5 per night per space occupied for any period between 6pm and 10am (max two consecutive nights only) we will also be asking motor homes to remain at least 6m apart. Signage to this effect will be displayed in the car parks.
Sydney House, Torrington EX38 8AA
There will be an additional button on the parking meter which will vend on the payment of the £5 charge. The daily charge is £3 at all sites with the exception of Westward Ho! for the period 15 March to 31 October when the daily charge is £7. Enforcement will be conducted by Civil Enforcement Officers at irregular times/days and will need to reflect the popularity of the offer. I would suggest it is the interests of Motor Home owners to self police the parking where ever possible as I fear that any significant abuse could lead to the withdrawal of the facilities.
We also have an additional stopover in Herefordshire listed, Red Meadow car park in Ross-on-Wye.
Check out the listings and you can print off a paper copy too!
No official stopover site for Exmouth
New stopover in Essex
Scottish National Park Proposals for Motorhome Overnight Parking
"Where appropriate facilities to accommodate motor home overnight parking should be considered as part of any site improvements".
Whilst informal overnight parking of motorhomes and campervans is not uncommon in parts of Scotland, it is very welcome initiative to hear from a National Park that official provision for motorhome and campervan overnight stays is to be made.
The full report can be read here: www.lochlomond-trossachs.org/images/stories/Looking After/PDF/5 Lochs/5LochsPlan_2012_web.pdf
No Stopovers for Scarborough
Despite the original recommendation of their own Parking Review Group the decision has been taken not to allow overnight stays, and to ban motorhomes from certain car parks completely at night.
This is the statement from Jane Wilson, Deputy Parking Manager, Scarborough Borough Council (received 16/10/12):
"The proposals to allow overnight use of motor caravans on various Off Street Car Parks was referred to the Parking Review Group for further consideration, at its meeting on 12 July 2012 members of the group voted unanimously against designating specific car park areas to allow the authorised overnight parking of Motor Caravans. A key factor that members considered in reaching their decision was the advice from Planning stating that the creation of a designated area on a car park would need planning permission for change of use, and that current policy would not support any application. As you are aware consideration was also given to prohibit motor caravans between the hours of 11pm-7am on certain car parks. I can confirm that objections were considered at a meeting of the Council's cabinet today with members approving the recommendation to introduce amendments to Traffic Regulation Order to prohibit motor caravan parking between 11pm and 7am on certain car parks to be implemented from 1 January 2013".
Whitby had already decided against the proposal. The head of tourism and culture Brian Bennett said: "Members have previously considered this option however it was felt that there were sufficient official sites within the borough that welcomed motor caravans and there was not a need for a facility specifically for motor caravans."
Our view, and that of some other local authorities, is that allowing overnight stays by motorhomes does not necessarily require planning consent for a change of use, as the primary function of the car park is not affected.
A lost opportunity for Scarborough to welcome additional tourists.
Another stopover in Ireland!
More stopovers planned
Tendring DC are planning an experimental scheme at one car park, if it is a success they hope to extend it to others in their area. One concern they have is that the site will be targeted by 'travellers' to set up unauthorised encampments, it may be necessary to have security measures in place and advance booking. We wiil post more information when we have it.
Malvern Hills DC have now approved motorhome stopovers in the Hanley Road Car Park in Upton upon Severn, the facility will be introduced as soon as the Parking Orders have been amended. They also plan to install a water tap, toilet waste disposal facility, and picnic benches. We've been asked what else motorhome owners would like!
New 'aire de service' open in Northern Ireland
Motorhomes are also now permitted to spend the night at the site.
Installed by Ards Borough Council in response to an increase in the popularity of motorhome tourism, the new facility aims to attract some of the growing number of camping vehicles to the Ards area, helping also to boost the number of visitors using local shops, eateries and other attractions in Donaghadee and further afield.
Read more details on the Ards Council website
Stopovers for Scarborough
Hawick has the first official stopover in Scotland
The scheme operates from Easter to the end of September, stays are limited to one night and are free. It is not possible to stay on Friday nights because there is a Saturday market. Campervans will also not be able to stay in a 2 week period at the beginning of June each year because the site is used for a 2 week fair. It was instigated by the Hawick Welcome Initiative, see: Hawick Welcome Initiative
We understand they even have volunteers on site during the day to welcome campervans and provide information about the town.
Stopover near Yeovil
Campsite owners force council U-turn on overnight charges at Hayling Island aire
The meeting decided to raise charges from the originally published rates of £8 a night from September to May inclusive and £10 a night from June to August inclusive to £10 a night from November to February and £20 a night from 1st March to 31st October. The new charges will be introduced from 1st July 2012.
We understand the council's intention was to control and regularise an existing situation, where motorhomes were illegally parking overnight in local car park. However what the council and the campsite owners fail to grasp is that the overnight parking facility is an additional provision, to accommodate those motorhome users who would not be customers of the campsites anyway.
We think that increasing the charges, to what will be seen as an excessive level, will simply result in motorhome users staying away, rather than being attracted to the area and benefiting local business, or else taking the risk of staying overnight in other car parks - exactly the situation that the council is attempting to alleviate.
Surely it would have been better, rather than what will be seen as caving in to pressure from campsite owners, to keep the existing charges in place for this year, assess the effectiveness of the scheme and it's impact on the campsites, then decide on the level of charges for next year.
St Annes 'aire' open
Stopovers are for 1 night only and are free.
The sites are mainly farm shops, vinyards and pubs, over 180 are listed in the 2012 guide.
For details see the website: www.britstops.com
The stopovers are available to members only, we cannot therefore include any in our listing.
The stopovers are available to members only, we cannot therefore include any in our listing.
First Irish Aire de Service (Feb 08)
For more about aires, and details on the setting up of one at Broughshane in Northern Ireland, see our article.
Here at UKMotorhomes.net we are right behind all campaigns to promote the introduction of motorhome stopovers in the UK and hope to be able to work with anyone to further the cause.
If you have any information about local initiatives to set up motorhome stopovers - let us know using our contact form
Legislation regarding Stopovers
In law, at least as regards the places where they may be stationed for the purposes of human habitation, motorhomes are included within the definition of a 'caravan' . The Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act (1960), states that a caravan is defined as:
" ... any structure designed or adapted for human habitation which is capable of being moved from one place to another (whether by being towed, or by being transported on a motor vehicle or trailer) and any motor vehicle so designed or adapted ..."
The Act introduced the licencing of caravan sites, and defines a 'caravan site' as " ... land on which a caravan is stationed for the purposes of human habitation and land which is used in conjunction with land on which a caravan is so stationed." Certain exemptions are allowed from the licencing requirements of the Act, these include:
" ... the use of land as a caravan site if the use is incidental to the
enjoyment as such of a dwellinghouse within the curtilage of which the land
" ... the use of land as a caravan site by a person travelling with a caravan
who brings the caravan on to the land for a period which includes not more than
" ... land as respects which there is in force a certificate issued under
this paragraph by an exempted organisation if not more than five caravans are
at the time stationed for the purposes of human habitation on the land to which
the certificate relates.
" ... land occupied by the local authority in whose area the land is situated."
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