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Campfire friendly, within reach of London?

(16 Posts)
Blu Mon 13-Jun-11 14:44:23

What are your favourite sites which allow campfires, and possibly camping in woods, close to london? A short enough drive for a Fri-Sun camp during term time?

You know, as natural as possible, camping in groups not rows, but we do like good hot showers, washing up facilities and even a modest cafe on site if available!

Ephiny Mon 13-Jun-11 15:06:17

Not sure how close to London you need, but Rocks East near Bath is nice. It's surrounded by woodland, and they allow campfires, camping is in three small fields with no rows!

Lovecat Mon 13-Jun-11 15:15:18

Debden House - we went here last year to test out the new tent, as it's only 20 mins up the road from us. 20-30 mins walk/5 mins drive to the Central line tube, but you are in the middle of Epping Forest and would not know you were anywhere near London.

I reviewed it in detail on the MN Holiday review thingy, but it ticks all your boxes (down to the modest cafe, which we didn't use but smelled lovely!) and you can walk right into the forest from it, which is wonderful. The fire fields are the furthest away from 'civilisation' if that makes sense! You can't camp in the woods themselves, but the pitches are all around the outside of the field (except for 1 field where there are also a circle of them in the middle), all divided by hedges/backed by trees, iyswim.

Really enjoyed it and will be back again this year.

marmiteandhoney Mon 13-Jun-11 17:46:40

I was going to say Debden House, too. Haven't camped there yet, but hopefully will pop along for a few nights this summer. We drove over to have a look last year, and they seemed very friendly.
(It's 20mins from me, too.)

Blu Mon 13-Jun-11 18:12:37

Thank you!

We generally make it to Kent or Sussex, so it's nice to have some alternatives.

needanewname Wed 15-Jun-11 22:36:11

Wowo, Kitts Farm, Forgewood, Palace Farm (I think, its in Doddington, Kent)

bibbitybobbityhat Wed 15-Jun-11 22:41:25

"You know, as natural as possible ... good hot showers, washing up facilities, modest cafe ..."

Heh heh heh, that sums up our requirements too wink. We are so achingly middle class.

We are going to Alfriston with our crowd, after finding it very difficult to satisfy all of the exact same requirements.

Bumperlicioso Wed 15-Jun-11 22:43:19

Britchcombe farm near uffington, Oxfordshire.

needanewname Wed 15-Jun-11 22:43:54

Arh missed the bit about cafes and showers. That counts out Kitts Farm (last time they had neither) and Wowo, (no shop, though there was a hog roast and a communal stew!) and Palace Farm (no shop but good showers). Cafe at Forgewood, dont; know about showers as I stunk for that weekend!

Blu Thu 16-Jun-11 15:44:13

Forgewood is our blueprint for a good camping weekend, really!
But we can't ALWAYS go to Forgewood.

The cafe there is fab - excellent cakes, and beer. A good nearby cafe / pub would be OK.

The showers are not bad, and the plastic porta-cabin toilets in the lower field are a bit basic and stinky, but that's OK.

And we can't cope with car-free sites, either.

And although we are achingly middle class, Bibbity, it's possible that the DCs may run amok in any woods with a Nerf gun blush

bigTillyMint Thu 16-Jun-11 17:09:30


just tracked you down on this thread - I would like to chat about children with one leg longer / shorter than the other - would that be OK?

I would like to chat about camping too - why aren't there more campfire / bbq freindly sites that have good showers / loos, shop and naice cafes and are cheap? The MC dream blush

Blu Fri 17-Jun-11 12:03:39

BigTillyMint - yes, please, do talk to me about leg length discrepancy, I'm always happy to share our experience.

Do you want to PM me or have you started a thread?

And maybe the next MN development should be a MN campsite!

It would have lots of little woody glades to camp amongst - like many of those in the Canadian national and Provincial campgrounds, as well as a field part, and proper woods. Campfires would be allowed, there would be a dogs-allowed part and a none-dogs part, a quiet part, and a drunken singing til all hours part, excellent hot showers (including mixed sex family shower and changing rooms), a dishwasher facility in a barn - like a launderette, but with dishwashers instead, a launderette, an on-site shop selling essentials plus produce from the neighbouring farm, a Cobb Oven rental option, a little licensed cafe doing excellent coffee, good value nutritious food, and cakes.

And be on an Ocado delivery route.

needanewname Fri 17-Jun-11 13:29:37

Blu that sounds fab. When are you opening up grin

SalomeD Fri 17-Jun-11 15:58:48

Thistledown Farm, Nailsworth is fabulous for families with children.

We spent four days there at half term and everyone had campfires - loads of space (there were about 4 families in the 3-acre bit we were in).

Mixture of ancient woodland and organic meadows with nature trails

Showers and compost loos (really clean and not smelly)

Really friendly people running the site

bigTillyMint Fri 17-Jun-11 16:58:46

Great Blu - will PM you!

3rdnparty Sat 18-Jun-11 08:43:54

that looks lovely SalomeD - this place is good- no 'shop' as such but often wine tasting and there is are good local shops in the village not far away- fantastic butcher...

looking forward to trying this place as good reviews-

britchcombe mentioned above is lovely but as your near the ridgeway would recommend taking a windbreak - just in case

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