I think when you have children you get a whole new perspective of time; everything flashes past at break neck speed, yet sometimes a day can feel like a lifetime. This is also true of running a camp site – and in many ways it is your baby, watching it grow into its full potential, witnessing the odd hick up along the way.
This year Little Winnick has grown and accomplished more than we could ever have imagined when we took over a few years ago; we have gone from empty to full, bad reviews to amazing reviews and most excitingly we have transformed into a multi award winning park.
So 2016 – many people ask what the season was like and for us, like many in Cornwall, the season has been the best on record.
April was slow to get going, Easter was far too early and the weather was terrible. It felt like the country and indeed Europe was holding it’s breathe waiting for not only the weather but also Brexit to make up its mind. It is always frustrating when you work so hard to get open then it is quiet and the weather battles against you.
In May we marketed our ‘Family Fun for Family Funds’ promotion – offering families in the local area buy one night, get one night free camping throughout May. It proved hugely popular and attracted many local people who had not been camping for a while back out.
June was when things took off. What an amazing month with utterly stunning weather from the first to the last day. We began the month hosting our first ‘Camp Wild(ish)’ weekend. A family weekend hosted in our wild flower meadow with family forest school sessions. The weekend was magical with children playing and running free like we all used to as children and parents enjoying a beer or two around the camp fire. This was followed by a wonderful half term, with some regulars saying it was the best weather they had seen in 28 years. This set the scene for the rest of the season.
With wall to wall sunshine and us out of Europe July seemed to get busier and busier – it is always popular with our regulars but we had the full sign out earlier than normal this year and there was a noticeable influx of guests from the continent who provided us with an interesting view point on our politics – it was a welcome change from the us
ual weather conversation!
And then came August – when you take a deep breath and hope you make it out the other side. It is an intense month, nothing can quite describe the pressure we work
under, I guess we are running off adrenaline most of the time just to ensure everything is as it should be and guests have a fabulous holiday. This year we were blessed with sunshine which was a massive relief after the monsoons of August 2015. The park is at its best when it is full to the brim with families, all the pitches are decked out in flags and lights and the hum of laughter and chatter accompanies the warm summer evenings. August was a success – phew!
Somehow we made it into September and what a month it was – we were full the majority of time and we achieved what we thought was not within our grasp just yet – we were shortlisted for Caravan and Camping Park of the Year in the Cornwall Tourism Awards. On paper we were little fish in a big pond, up against some of the biggest touring parks in the county. Never, ever when we set out on this adventure did we think we would be compared to such prestigious and big parks. But we were and were very proud to be honoured with Bronze – that means in the judges eyes we are the third best Caravanning and Camping Park in the County – wowie. At the awards we were treated to a black tie ceremony with guest speakers and free drinks! It was a welcome party to the end of a wonderful season.
The Bronze award was accompanied shortly after with a Gold in the David Bellamy Conservation Award for Holiday Parks. As first time entrants we were shocked to be awarded the highest accolade in this highly respected conservation programme thanks to our work across the park.
So, in short an amazing season. As always Richard, myself and the team at Little Winnick are hugely grateful to the support that you give us. Whether you have stayed with us, you just read the blog or you are friends &
family who accept we disappear for half the year – thank you for your support
And on to the winter. People think we shut the gates and put our feet up for a few months…I wish. The reason for the delay in this blog is we have been very busy both down the park and at home as a family. This winter sees more work on the park roads, work on the hard standing pitches, development of the website and much, much more. I will be updating the blog over the winter so keep a look out of what we have been up to and don’t forget that bookings are now open for 2017 with some months already looking very busy.