The futuristic motorhomes making camping cool again

Discussion in 'Motorhomes in the News' started by Jim, Oct 30, 2008.

  1. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

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    Times On Line 29th October 2008

    The futuristic caravans and motorhomes that are making camping cool again


    Times Online TV | Audio / Video - Times Online

    Self-contained smart cars, flat-screen TVs, and the caravan that's won over the extreme sports crowd - Ginny McGrath discovers the designs and gadgets that are bringing caravans and motorhomes in to the 21st century They queued around the block to be first in, they pored over the latest models, they camped in the car park and brought their own packed lunches.

    Caravan enthusiasts were out in force last week for their annual pilgrimage to Birmingham. This year is expected to post the highest turnout yet – with an estimated 70,000 attending the International Caravan and Motorhome show at the NEC.

    There was little evidence of the trendy young crowd who are said to be adopting the hobby – VisitBritain reported this month that 35-44 year-olds go camping and caravanning more than other other age group. Most of the visitors to the show were empty nesters… perhaps the 30-somethings visited at the weekend.

    That said, there was plenty of kit and gadgetry geared towards the younger market.
    The trendy Tabs caravan, the flat-screen television with access to Skype and email, and the motorhome with a self-contained SmartCar garage, were among other innovations at the show. And if a SmartCar isn't nippy enough - you can upgrade to some higher horse power, with this model, featured recently in the My[confined]Space blog.

    One exhibit causing a stir was the custom-built EcoStream, an environmentally-aware version of the iconic AirStream caravan. The aluminium trailer was adapted by Top Gear’s presenter, Steve Berry, and director, Tighe Grainger. It featured solar panels, a wood burning stove, recycled materials and composting toilet.

    Whether it’s environmental concerns over flights, the threat of recession or strength of the Euro, this has been a bumper couple of years for caravans. Everything but the British weather is driving holidaymakers back to Britain's camp sites.

    Last year, 16 million camping and caravanning trips were taken according to VisitBritain, while this year, figures from the National Caravan Council revealed a 20 per cent rise in campsite bookings for July and August.

    Haven Holidays, one of Britain’s biggest caravan holiday operators, posted a 30 per cent rise in bookings this summer, meanwhile, the Caravan Club claims that caravanning is the most popular paid-for holiday choice in Britain.

    In the past decade, sales of new motorhomes have more than trebled, exceeding 11,000 in the UK in 2007 – a new record. But the second-hand market is also thriving, classifieds website Gumtree, has reported a 300 per cent increase in postings of caravans and camper vans for sale or to rent.

    And the good news about secondhand caravans? According to Chris Doree from motorhome, caravan and camping publishers, Vicarious Books, there are very few old bangers.

    “The sort of people who love motorhoming and caravanning are the sort of people who look after their vehicles. Motorhomes and caravans don’t rack by a high milegae - the average distance a caravanner travels from home is 30 miles - so the second-hand market tends to be reliable.”


    Times Online TV | Audio / Video - Times Online
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  2. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    One exhibit causing a stir was the custom-built EcoStream, an environmentally-aware version of the iconic AirStream caravan. The aluminium trailer was adapted by Top Gear’s presenter, Steve Berry, and director, Tighe Grainger. It featured solar panels, a wood burning stove, recycled materials and composting toilet.

    who the hell is Steve Berry?
     
  3. pat1

    pat1 Deleted User

    Steve Berry (presenter - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)
     
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