Campsites with shared toilets & showers told they CAN open from today in last minute u-turn

CAMPSITES and caravan parks have been told they can open their toilet and shower blocks from today in a last minute u-turn by the government.

Despite originally being told they would stay closed until May 17, the new guidance says that shared facilities including water points, shower blocks and toilet stalls can open, with restrictions.

According to the government advice, from today: "Campsites and caravan parks will be permitted to open for leisure stays provided that the only shared facilities used by guests at the campsite or caravan park are receptions, washing facilities (including facilities for laundering clothes), public toilets, baby changing rooms, breastfeeding rooms, water points and waste disposal points."

It also explains that "no household mixing [should] take place" and requires either a reservation system for shower access or assigning the shower blocks to one household, making them a private facility.

Toilet blocks will be able to open as long as additional cleaning and social distancing is followed, similar to rules for pubs and attractions.

However, camping website Pitchup.com's Dan Yates said the short-notice change meant he had to contact more than 2,000 campsites in England over the weekend informing them of the new rules.

He told Sun Online Travel: "It's good news, but it's unfortunate this new guideline came out with other comments that suggested they couldn't open.

"We found at least three different versions of the guidance – I spent my entire weekend sending an email to 2,000 English campsites about the new rules."

"My worry is that some of them had decided that they wouldn't open until May 17 due to the original advice."

"They've got a few weeks until the first May bank holiday so that should be okay for basic sites to reopen, such as ones with toilets but not showers. That could be enough for a decent number even if they hadn't planned to.

"The vast majority of campsites are owned by individuals who live there so are in a position to act quickly. The cleaning rules are more onerous but they are in the position to implement them very quickly."

"Some of the larger organisations that have longer planning horizons or no cleaning staff, might no be as agile."

It is great news for families who want to book a holiday for the bank holiday, meaning they have more choice for the first May weekend if campsites can open.

He continued: "Unlike other venues that can open, the camping season will be over by early September and time is ticking away. If this means they can open by the first bank holiday in May – thats hugely important for them to know about."

"For the camping sector, the three spring bank holidays are three of the four peak periods of the year excluding summer.

"They lost all of them last year, and were on course to lose two this year.

"The new guidelines reduce the risk of missing out on the late bank holiday of May – that's already a busy weekend.

"If we even out the demand a bit across the month, that's got to be a good thing, given how much demand there is over the uncertainty over foreign travel."

Here is everything you need to know about the travel restrictions being eased from today.

Hundreds of campsites are opening in the UK this year due to demand, with locations such as stately homes and even race courses opening for overnight stays.

Here are some of the cheap camping sites in the UK to book through for a UK holiday.

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