Fancy an open air holiday in a tent, caravan or campervan this year? You certainly won’t be on your own.
No need to worry too much about the weather, either, as sites are proliferating where you can plug into heat, light and computer/TV entertainment, enjoy indoor spa treatments and heated pools, or visit nearby attractions if it rains.
The Camping and Caravanning Club’s fast-growing membership, at 500,000 and counting, shows that taking your accommodation with you is the way it’s going for UK holidays.
The rise and rise in popularity of cheap and cheerful breaks enjoying the British countryside up close is charted in the history of the club, which grew out of six keen cyclists camping in an orchard outside Wantage in 1901.
Its founder, tailor Thomas Holding, had never forgotten the fun he had as a boy trekking across the American prairies with a wagon train.
In the 1930s, by which time founder of the scouting movement Sir Robert Baden-Powell was club president, many members took part in mass trespasses which opened up open spaces for the public to ramble across.
The same decade saw the first caravanners joining, some even in vans they’d made themselves using timber for the chassis and wheels and springs from crashed cars.
Membership held up well through the second world war and by 1999 had passed 300,000. The extra 200,000 has been added in just 13 years since then.
Go to club website: www.campingandcaravanningclub.co.uk for a list of more than 100 approved and reviewed club sites open for Easter.