It’s official – caravans are cool. Yes – it really is. Those days of being seen as something that anoraks and cheapskates did are long gone, as is its reputation of being an unfashionable form of holidaying.
Skiers, surfers, divers and other adventure sports enthusiasts are among the group of people who are making caravanning cool. In the past year there has been a 24 per cent rise in sales of caravans and the number of people holidaying in them, according to caravan specialists.
And while many buyers are families tired of crowded airports and wary of security abroad, a new type of caravanner is towing the industry into the twenty-first century. These days, even the rich and famous are caravanning – and that says a lot because these people are used to paying several thousands of pounds per night to stay in the world’s grandest hotels, yachts and even get an island for themselves.
So, which celebrities are making caravanning cool again?
- Jamie Oliver – Interestingly, a member of the Caravan Club and has even spent thousands converting a 1950s VW bus into a the coolest of modern motorhomes with a cutting-edge kitchen (well what else would it have!). While promoting one of his books, Jamie travelled with his wife in the Porsche-engined caravanette instead of staying in the traditional hotel!
- Dame Helen Mirren – Who would have thought that the Oscar-winning actress – and a dame to boot – would opt for caravanning? But Dame Helen Mirren is a lover of caravans.
- Mark Owen – Another celebrity who has more than enough money to stay at a plush hotel – and is probably used to doing just that during glitzy tours – opts for caravanning, too.
- Patsy Palmer – Eastenders’ star Patsy Palmer who plays chavvy Bianca is another celebrity who likes caravanning. While we may not be surprised if her screen character went on a caravan holiday, we certainly wouldn’t expect Patsy to.
And with us all abuzz about the recent Royal Wedding, it’s also worth noting that in 2007, when the Caravan Club celebrated its 100th birthday, Buckingham Palace was partly transformed into a caravan park so that the Duke of Edinburgh could host a special garden party for the club.
So, if you have previously dismissed caravanning because the only image it brought to mind were images of dreary seaside holidays and bespectacled elderly drivers holding up traffic as they meandered across the country, you may well get a surprise if you venture to a caravan park these days.