We are lucky. The caravan lives at home with us, no storage, no distance to travel to check on her just a walk across the garden and in the winter months a squeeze to get under the storage cover.
When the world stopped moving in March we were lucky to be able to do some minor repairs on the caravan that we have never got around to doing before, it was cleaned at least once a week, the shine coming off her could be seen from the top of the country lane. We had one night of sleeping in the caravan, but it did not feel the same, as much as we pretended to not be in the garden, it just wasn’t the same as being away.
Finally, on my Birthday of all days the news came that so many caravan owners had been waiting for. We could get back into our homes on wheels. We made the decision to leave it for a few weeks until things had settled down and the children, both in key years, and me as a key worker, had finished school. We have friends with a caravan in storage on a site in Conway, north Wales. Now Mr EBF has a golden rule while away in the caravan, No Number twos in the caravan toilet! We had to break the golden rule to comply with the new rules on site, like the toilet blocks being shut. Parks on site were yet to still open so maintaining ourselves in our family “bubble” would also be required. This is the wonderful thing about caravans. It did not matter that those things were shut*. We have a perfectly working toilet and shower in the caravan, so the fact the toilet block was shut was not an issue.
(*I beg to differ! It’s me that has to empty the toilet! Mr EBF)
Out and about it was all a bit hit and miss. Some bars open, some bars shut, some shops open, some shops shut, most activities had to be booked a long time prior to arrival but the supermarkets were not busy and all that really mattered was that we were back in the caravan.
Things are changing all the time and by the time I publish this the rules and regulations regards travel and caravanning will have probably changed again! My advice for now would be:
- Some of the caravans being pulled around from storage were in a sorry state. People seemed to spend days trying to clean them. I would speak to the storage company and see if they have any cleaning contacts before you even arrive on site.
- A few toilet blocks are still shut so phone ahead and check, make sure all toiletries and chemicals needed to clean the loo are stocked up just in case blocks are shut or busy.
- Take picnic bags, blankets, plates etc. We had a lot of picnics as so many places are yet to open and its very hit and miss, do not presume you will easily get something to eat especially if you have young hungry children!
- Make sure you have the toolbox stocked up or take some extra tools with you, just in case of any small fixes that need doing when the caravan has not been used for so long.
- We seemed to forget loads this time, I think it is because we had not been out in the caravan for so long. Next time I am starting on a list a lot sooner before we go away. Things like the fairy lights (I know not necessary, but I do love a fairy light!) had been pulled out as they had broken, and we had forgotten to replace and throw new ones in the caravan.
- Make sure you have the right personal protection. For example, wear disposable gloves when filling up with fuel and make sure you have plenty of hand sanitiser in the car (NEVER LEAVE IT IN THE CAR IT IS FLAMMABLE) whilst travelling and in the caravan when on site. You will also need a mask on hand for any stops whilst travelling
- Checking into any sites may be slightly different. Campsite offices are often small and may continue the 2-metre apart rule. So be prepared that you may have to wait outside and wear a mask on entering.
Things keep changing, nothing is certain now. All you can do is follow the government guidelines and regulations as they change, check the camping and caravanning page for updates and just relax, enjoy the space of your caravan and the time away.