We are on a BritStops weekender in our motorhome. We have stayed at the lovely Melbury Vale Winery with Jo and Claire who were great hosts. The free wine tasting and potted histories were a delight, as were the facilities and bottle of Elegance wine. Please consider a visit but approach the place from the west not the east if in a campervan. Sitting here we are in the carpark of the Old Inn in Holt with a lovely view of trees and fields. I came across a rather negative post about BritStops on Twitter so I had to redress the balance. This is what I replied.
In response to Ed James’ post on Motohomes Mayhem
Interesting article and viewpoint. You missed out that it costs to get the book and sticker too. Although we got ours free this year as we put Britstops in contact with a pub in Ireland that joined the scheme. However, as a member let me say we have never yet been pressurised to buy anything though sometimes we are asked. We are not approaching this as a free campsite. We see it as convenience with there being places to stop over for a night in locations where there are no campsites or if there are they may be full. Also for example in Ireland the campsites in October were mostly shut (we had nearly 30 days Indian Summer weather BTW). Some of the locations are stunning. The low number of pitches means you’re also not blotting the landscape too much. White Motorhomes are a blot no two ways about it. I hated them before I got one and I am still sympathetic to those that groan when we arrive. And what about if you want to get the meal, wine, curry, beer etc. Basically I see it as £10-£25 off the price of the commodity. Yes there is the lack of facilities and less security but the convenience of finding a stopover in many towns and many villages is great. We plan where we go and we consider the options of buying the offerings. Part of the Britstops code is too be prepared to support the business. Many pubs are failing these days especially village pubs. If me attending goes part way to helping a pub survive then great. At a recent stopover at a winery we were given a free wine tasting before purchasing a bottle of English wine for a tenner. Not a bad deal at all. We had a good hour chat with the owners too. Their stopover included really modern 24hr toilets and shower all freely available with no tokens. I for one will happily promote Britstops, not as a free lunch but as a great way of supporting part of this nations economy and making Motorhomes less of a pox on the landscape as one smaller campervan driver told us. We are considering painting Boudicca (our humble reg 2000 Swift Lifestyle) sap green to blend in 🙂
So it’s not quite how you see it. We all see through a glass darkly my friend. But I do value your viewpoint. Happy camping.