Caravan parks in Wales and Scotland to open next month – but England parks STILL have no confirmed dates, officials warn
CARAVAN parks in Wales and Scotland are to open from next month, but England still has no confirmed dates, caravan officials have warned.
In Wales, sites will welcome campers from July 6 while Scotland will follow suit from July 15.
England is far behind, with no official opening dates, however.
Tourism hopes to be able to restart from July 4, with hotels and resorts planning to welcome guests if the lockdown is lowered.
However, with no confirmed dates, parks and resorts are left fearing for the summer holidays.
Culture Secretary Oliver Down warned last week: "I very much hope that we’ll be able to stick to that roadmap and we will see tourism return to the UK… but we can only do so when it’s safe."
The National Caravan Council (NCC) has warned that, despite an increase in interest and bookings by Brits looking for a holiday in the country, without clear guidelines, many may not be able to reopen in time for the peak season.
NCC Director of Marketing, Jenny Summers, said: “We still do not have a date from the UK government for when caravan parks in England can reopen, despite preparations being well underway by the park owners and protocols being implemented.
"We have issued our own guidance to holiday and touring parks to ensure strict social distancing and hygiene protocols are in place for when visitors with holiday caravans, motorhomes and touring caravans can return to parks.
“It is vital that the government gives us clarity on a date for us to work towards and consumers to begin to book their trips."
It is also worth noting that travel restrictions remain in place for Wales and Scotland for now, meaning English holidaymakers cannot stay currently – this will be eased by next month.
Caravan parks hope to be the first to re-open because they can easily social distance – many motorhomes are at least 5-6m apart.
They are also self-contained, meaning less risk of contamination in communal areas such as shower and toilet facilities.
NCC Director General John Lally warned that it was "totally inappropriate" for the government to issue the same guidelines for hotels and B&B's along with caravan parks and campsites.
He added: "It is illogical that the two million people who own caravans and motorhomes are denied the opportunity to stay overnight in their safe self contained accommodation."
Caravan parks and campsites are letting wild patches of tall grass grow between pitches to make sure holidaymakers stay 2m apart.
The new ‘wildlife corridors’ are one of many new features being introduced to holiday parks to follow new social distancing and hygiene guidelines during the coronavirus pandemic.
Ros Pritchard, director-general of the British Holiday & Home Parks Association told the Mirror: “You have to have this two metres of distance so we came up with the idea that you just leave two metres unmown because that gives the visual indication of space that some people can't imagine.
"We've already done wildlife corridors on the margins and through our parks so it's just extending these to two metres.”
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