Bell tent as a playroom - will it work?

(23 Posts)
TeamEdward Sat 05-Jul-14 08:28:15

I like the cut of your jib, Fillybuster...

hettie Fri 13-Jun-14 22:01:27

You can get thick canvas sunshade sails...

Fillybuster Tue 03-Jun-14 12:56:38

FF Surely the bell tent is actually so you have spare accommodation for all your MN friends when they come and stay in search of sunshine? <hopeful>

<waits for invitation>

envy

grin

grocklebox Tue 03-Jun-14 12:53:44

Don't forget it will destroy any grass underneath it, and you will have a big bare spot when you do take it down, which will take a very long time to grow back. <bitter experience>

busysquirrel Sun 01-Jun-14 21:20:19

Hi there,
I have just had the very same idea as you for the summer in our back garden - did you go ahead and by a bell tent? I would be so pleased to hear from you as I'm going to research the same thing. Two young boys to entertain for the whole summer holiday, I love the idea of hanging out in a bell tent in our back garden throughout the summer!

SparkyUK Sun 02-Mar-14 18:32:25

there are plenty of campsites where you stay in their bell tents so presumably these are left up all summer long. I think you would be fine for two or three seasons.

GuineaPigGaiters Sat 01-Mar-14 11:18:19

They do them as a 4 metre too.

GuineaPigGaiters Sat 01-Mar-14 11:17:27

Coming a bit late to this but these www.canvascamp.com/en/cotton-tents/sibley/pro/sibley-500-ultimate-pro.html are supposed to be hardier than a conventional bell tent as they have thicker canvas and ground sheet! and it says in their blurb they are for customers who will be leaving their bell up on a more permanent basis.

Theas18 Tue 25-Feb-14 15:30:13

No sewn in ground sheet on a standard bell tent so it's yet hot, damp and buggy...

frenchfancy Tue 25-Feb-14 15:24:24

Thanks BH I think we might go for it. I'll keep you informed.

bedhaven Sat 22-Feb-14 10:14:46

Bell tent also provides extra room if you have visitors or sleep out potential in the future. You can even decorate with fabric pens/paints too if your kids are past the scribble stage! Wish I had the garden space.

bedhaven Sat 22-Feb-14 10:08:38

I would have thought a bell tent with sides that go up would be ideal for 3 months. You will need the side ventilation as it still gets close inside when it's hot and no shade. Loads of camp sites have them up all summer for glamping and nomads and armies have lived under canvas for years! Maybe ask a glampsite owner or a bell tent seller for first hand experience of lengthy erection! I think it sounds a brilliant plan but whatever you have the kids will invariably bring everything out and be wherever you are!

frenchfancy Mon 17-Feb-14 08:14:27

We are in the Vendée.

If by a sunshade you mean a sail, the trouble is you need posts to tie it to.

I really want it to replace the playhouse. The playhouse is only about 1.5x1.5m and will cost about the same to replace as a 4m bell tent. As the tent will only be up for 3 months/year rather than permanent I thought it would last longer than the playhouse. To get a proper wooden summer house that size would cost thousands.

I'm a bit surprised by the response (though pleased to have any response so thank you) from the threads I've read about bell tents I thought they were supposed to be the bees knees, don't get too hot, last much longer than normal tents, resist strong winds etc.

millimat Mon 17-Feb-14 07:56:49

Am v jealous it gets too hot. Where are you?

hettie Sun 16-Feb-14 21:59:44

what about a sunshade

frenchfancy Sun 16-Feb-14 19:04:01

Thanks for the thoughts.

We do have a wooden playhouse, but it is very wet and windy here in the winter so it suffers. We have had gazebos up before, but we still get a lot of wind even in summer and they just don't stand up to it; I thought maybe a bell tent would cope better.

Do bell tents degrade with UV? I thought that the canvas might las longer than synthetic fibres.

PoorOldCat Sun 16-Feb-14 17:55:30

I wouldn't do this as they are v expensive and will suffer if left out long term - I'd get a gazebo thing like from Argos, with open/mesh sides and metal poles and ties it down really well. Much bigger space and around £60, and they can run in and out much more easily.

Artandco Sun 16-Feb-14 17:48:29

Have a look at the canvas triangles if you have a tree/ pole or similar as can stretch across the garden

Otherwise if you have space investing in a wooden playhouse/ summer house is probably longer lasting. You can get ones with glass doors you can leave open etc

Nocomet Sun 16-Feb-14 17:42:28

We have very little shade and we recon that you get two/max three summers out of reasonable quality gazebo. Even in the average British summer there is enough UV to degrade the fabric and the guys tear out the roof eventually.

Our place is pretty windy all year round and we have huge pegs and ropes tied to fences.

So you may find wind and sun damage on an expensive tent prohibitive.

We are happy to trash £50-60 gazebos as a 3M square wooden one that would stand winters here is £2000-3000 plus maintenance for anything faintly nice.

Catsmamma Sun 16-Feb-14 17:38:27

don't most bell tents have ravelly up sides so you can let the air in?

Treaclepot Sun 16-Feb-14 17:36:29

Get a belltent which can open sides, perfect forhot weather.

DandelionGilver Sun 16-Feb-14 17:29:35

Tents do get very, very hot inside when it's hot outside, because they trap the air which heats up very quickly. You might find it's never used and therefore a waste of money.

I'd recommend a pagoda style for shade, where you can easily put on/take off the sides as required.

Or if you have trees, a tarpaulin tied between them.

Whatever you do choose, you need it to allow airflow through to stop it getting too hot inside.

frenchfancy Sun 16-Feb-14 16:09:30

I am thinking ahead to the summer and wondering about getting a bell tent to put up in the garden to use as a summer playroom. It often gets too hot here for the kids to play outside without shade, and we have friends visiting so can end up with 5 youngsters playing inside when they should be outside.

Are there any downsides or problems to leaving a bell tent up for lon periods of time?

I'm looking at the sibley400 anyone got any experiences? What accessories should I look for?

I know it isn't really camping but I thought you would be the people in the know.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now