What's up with the UK?

RichardA

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Dear Wilcampers,

I'm sure that you, like me, have become increasingly frustrated with the increasing number of signs prohibiting overnight camping/parking. I've long wondered why the British psyche is so different from the French in this respect. It's almost as if it's now on the school curriculum - a module in how to keep camper vans at bay. Whilst the French have a contrary module - how to welcome campervanners with open arms.

I've now decided to start writing to car park owners to ask why the prohibition. Started with a local wildlife trust who have just erected a height barrier over their car park - for no reason I can think of. If that place was in France, it would be the perfect stopover.

Maybe mass letter (email) writing will help effect some sort of dent in this cancer?

Angry from Winscombe (aka Richard)
 

Snapster

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I remember when I was young, playing in the street, there was always some miserable sods who insisted on telling you to “play up your own end” or similar.
A few weeks ago, we were in Thetford by the river and some children were playing in the river, meanwhile, on the opposite bank was a man, watching and looking disapprovingply with his hands on his hips. ( He or someone wrote to the paper next day complaining about this)
These are just two examples, but, with this seemingly common British attitude, the UK will never have the same relaxed outlook as the rest of Europe to people enjoying themselves.
 

Fisherman

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Dear Wilcampers,

I'm sure that you, like me, have become increasingly frustrated with the increasing number of signs prohibiting overnight camping/parking. I've long wondered why the British psyche is so different from the French in this respect. It's almost as if it's now on the school curriculum - a module in how to keep camper vans at bay. Whilst the French have a contrary module - how to welcome campervanners with open arms.

I've now decided to start writing to car park owners to ask why the prohibition. Started with a local wildlife trust who have just erected a height barrier over their car park - for no reason I can think of. If that place was in France, it would be the perfect stopover.

Maybe mass letter (email) writing will help effect some sort of dent in this cancer?

Angry from Winscombe (aka Richard)
I completely agree with your sentiment.
But unfortunately you will not be supported by some within our own community.
You will get the usual comments, like you will only make matters worse, why don’t you get a life, your wasting your time, don’t hold your breath, why don’t you just go to a campsite, you are a freeloader, or even better things are fine just the way they are.


I had a serious of pms on here with a man who dedicated much time to fighting for better treatment for us. He sadly concluded that what he felt was most difficult was not convincing those outside our community that they were behaving wrongly towards us, but convincing those from within.
Hopefully things will improve in years to come, even if it’s only for those who will follow us. But all the best with your quest.
 
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RichardA

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I completely agree with your sentiment.
But unfortunately you will not be supported by some within our own community.
You will get the usual comments, like you will only make matters worse, why don’t you get a life, your wasting your time, don’t hold your breath, why don’t you just go to a campsite, you are a freeloader, or even better things are fine just the way they are.


I had a serious of pms on here with a man who dedicated much time to fighting for better treatment for us. He sadly concluded that what he felt was most difficult was not convincing those outside our community that they were behaving wrongly towards us, but convincing those from within.
Hopefully things will improve in years to come, even if it’s only for those who will follow us. But all the best with your quest.
Fisherman,

Interesting reflection on some members of our 'home grown' campervanning community. But presumably they should be reading other online forums? The name says it all; "Wildcamping.co.uk"!

Richard
 

Fisherman

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Fisherman,

Interesting reflection on some members of our 'home grown' campervanning community. But presumably they should be reading other online forums? The name says it all; "Wildcamping.co.uk"!

Richard
Well Richard we all have our opinions.

Perhaps you should take a look at the campra posts on here.
Possibly even join in.
Last I heard they had over 5000 members, and seem to be influential in whats happening in the highlands.

Again all the best to you in your quest.
 

trevskoda

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I got a ticket once for parking out of bay in ballymena co antrim, well after looking up the EU regs it was clear that all carparks MUST provide one bay or two for a rigid truck and one for a artic, i tried fighting them on it but after many letters i had to pay up, at moment fighting another one which i will go to jail first before paying.
Those that try to control these days make their own rules and force them legaly or not down peoples throat.
AS for letting you park a motorhome in a carpark, well you have as much chance as i have of winning the euro millions, it is time these faceless people were taken to task big time, if every one in the uk stopped paying there road tax then and only then will they listen, maybe.
 

Fisherman

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AS for letting you park a motorhome in a carpark, well you have as much chance as i have of winning the euro millions, it is time these faceless people were taken to task big time, if every one in the uk stopped paying there road tax then and only then will they listen, maybe.
Trev no point in taking people to task, if you reckon our chances of changing minds are less than the odds of winning lotto.
And it’s not just about taking people to task, it’s about trying to change how we are perceived by others. You posted on here recently that when you tell folk what you do they ask you is that legal. That’s one of the things that has to change, the attitude that simply parking in a car park is somehow illegal in a Motorhome.
 

trevskoda

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Trev no point in taking people to task, if you reckon our chances of changing minds are less than the odds of winning lotto.
And it’s not just about taking people to task, it’s about trying to change how we are perceived by others. You posted on here recently that when you tell folk what you do they ask you is that legal. That’s one of the things that has to change, the attitude that simply parking in a car park is somehow illegal in a Motorhome.
I agree but for some weird res folk have this in there head, prob got to do with travelers, beats me though.
But im sure you agree with me that those up stairs in power make there own rules right or wrong, and we pay being fools.
 

RichardA

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What I don't understand (and what prompted me to write this post in the first instance) is why the British attitude to campervanners is so diametrically opposed to the French. What is it in their psyche, in their tradition, in their expectations that leads them to actively encourage campervanning? And on the other hand, why are the Brits so seemingly terrified by it?

Something to chew on!

Richard
 

Fisherman

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What I don't understand (and what prompted me to write this post in the first instance) is why the British attitude to campervanners is so diametrically opposed to the French. What is it in their psyche, in their tradition, in their expectations that leads them to actively encourage campervanning? And on the other hand, why are the Brits so seemingly terrified by it?

Something to chew on!

Richard
Richard it’s not just the French it’s basically the rest of the free world. The whole of Europe, America, Australia, New Zealand and others don’t have our attitudes.
I suspect if someone in these countries wanted to stop us from parking it would be made more difficult, and their actions would have to be accountable. we keep hearing it’s because of travellers, well all these countries have the same issues.
Basically we have to stop being treated as a problem, and sadly some of us have to learn how to behave. But in saying that our behaviour is no worse and possibly better than others who use these facilities.
 

SHABBINS

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The French pitch lifestyle way above business, government and money. They are so proud of their towns and villages they provide places for travellers to visit and stay with welcoming facilities. Most English people would be horrified to have 6 motorhomes pitched up close to their castle. The majority of visiting French travellers treat these facilities with respect and give online thanks to local councils. Many are resident for months but keep the places spotless. Some frown on English tourists as we enjoy the facilities in France but do not provide any in the UK for visiting French motorhomes.
Some will add continental horror stories to counter this view but this was our experience during a 90 day trip this year.
 

barryd

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Sadly I think Covid may well have been the final nail in the coffin for wilding in the UK. I am a member of this Facebook group "NC 500 the land weeps" https://www.facebook.com/groups/616510159069958 which is pretty much a group that in the main is very anti wild camping, anti tent and motorhome etc. I joined with the intention of fighting out corner in as diplomatic way as possible but it is clear from the many reports that since Covid raised its ugly head many of our beauty spots (not just in scotland) have been overrun by morons.

Sadly we are only as good as our lowest common denominator and without doubt there are people acting irresponsibly. The Lakes now has clamped down on wilding and are moving people on in the middle of the night and issuing fines. Further legislation may follow. I was hoping we could use it as a reason for Aires and public service points but I dont hold out much hope. However I believe the Aires system in France got going because many places were being overrun with motorhomes many years ago so instead of banning them they created aires. Could that happen here? I wont hold my breath.

For me though I never follow the crowds. If I go wilding its as remote as possible and never in a group of vans.
 

trevskoda

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What folk dont understand is the fact that our gov want us to pay for everything, but not run by them, so go to a private run camp site where the gov collect vat and tax without having the bother if they were to it direct through a council, also some of the council big boys own land and c/sites, get the picture, we are born to be a product of money extraction for toffs.
 
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Fisherman

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What folk dont understand is the fact that our gov want us to pay for everything, but not run by them, so go to a private run camp site where the gove collect vat and tax without having the bother if they were to it direct through a council, also some of the council big boys own land and c/sites, get the picture, we are born to be a product of money extraction fo toffs.
But Trev they provide facilities, for everyone else it seems apart from us. Car drivers, cyclists, HGV, buses, etc. I reckon it’s got more to do with attitudes within the general public in this country. Hopefully things will change, their are glimmers of hope here and there.
 

Tookey

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What I don't understand (and what prompted me to write this post in the first instance) is why the British attitude to campervanners is so diametrically opposed to the French. What is it in their psyche, in their tradition, in their expectations that leads them to actively encourage campervanning? And on the other hand, why are the Brits so seemingly terrified by it?

Something to chew on!

Richard
I am unsure whether the same perceptions exists in France but in the UK I feel 'class' also plays a part. Owning a caravan/motorhome or hiring a caravan for a site holiday is considered by many to be a very working class pass time and it is likely that there is some truth in that, especially during the 80's and 90's when the more affluent were flying. The British working class use to have a reputation for being 'rough around the edges' but also for working hard and having their moral compass intact and although they were the 'lower' class they were still respected.

Due to the press and the tele people are now more likely to associate the working class with a gobby person moaning about their benefits not covering the cost of living while they smoke a '10 quid a pack' fag with a 44inch tele playing Jeremy Kyle in the background. Think about the tele programmes, especially the 'reality' ones of recent years and what so called working class traits they highlight and magnify, the British working class has lost its 'salt of the earth' reputation and it has been replaced with an image of poor attitude and bad behaviour. A working class couple doing 50 hour weeks, paying their taxes, respecting their community, putting decent quality food on their kids plates and encouraging their kids to do well at school etc does not make good tele/press.

Organisations such as councils and the National Trust as an example are frequently made up of middle class individuals who as previously stated consider motorhoming and caravanning to be a working class pastime (probably inaccurate in 2020). Some of their decision making will be based on the assumption that the encouragement of camping will come at the cost of inviting poorly behaved and loud mouthed individuals that will not respect their land and the local communities. Although poor behavior can actually come with any level of class or education now more than ever before it is associated with the working class..................the media can take another bow

:(
 
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trevskoda

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But Trev they provide facilities, for everyone else it seems apart from us. Car drivers, cyclists, HGV, buses, etc. I reckon it’s got more to do with attitudes within the general public in this country. Hopefully things will change, their are glimmers of hope here and there.
Not may working class can aford a £100.000 van, and yes it is about time we got some things for us, but i remember boating was almost free when i was young, then when it became up market with fancy cruisers etc floating jettys with big sums of money came into play, and thats the way the toffs want it for vans, so for the last 30/40 years there has been no such thing as a free lunch & i dont see it changing much, look back in time and the parking meter was the start of it.
 

Fisherman

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Not may working class can aford a £100.000 van, and yes it is about time we got some things for us, but i remember boating was almost free when i was young, then when it became up market with fancy cruisers etc floating jettys with big sums of money came into play, and thats the way the toffs want it for vans, so for the last 30/40 years there has been no such thing as a free lunch & i dont see it changing much, look back in time and the parking meter was the start of it.
Trev motorhoming has taken off in the last ten years.
I tend to think that some catch up is needed.
There are some good things happening up here.
The government makes billions from this industry.
it’s not in anyone’s interest to spoil a lucrative industry.
It won’t cost much to change things for the better.
Just a change in perspective from some, and better behaviour from a minority of us. And education will go a long way Trev.
 

molly 2

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I some times think we are our own worst enemy posting photos of motorhomes ,dumping waist ,draining tanks emptying cassettes in rivers all makes bad press for us all and to the joy of all organisations that dislike us ,you never see reports of motorhomers cleaning up other peoples rubbish and dog crap that happens more than often than the bad press. We get.
 

Tookey

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Most social groups and organisations go through 'peaks n troughs' of popularity with the press and therefore the public, football fans, soldiers, church even Oxfam etc have all had there turn at been vilified due to the behaviour of the few and it so happens it's our turn presently. It will pass

ACAB.......all campers are

😆
 

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