As you’ll undoubtedly have noticed over the last few years, local councils are becoming increasingly strict on where campervan and motorhome owners can park up overnight. In many places, barriers or electronic ticketing machines have made it impossible for campervan owners to park up in some public car parks, meaning that many places which do allow overnight parking are becoming cramped. Star West Country, campervan owning chef Martin Dorey has even weighed in on the debate, claiming that campervan owners are usually prepared to pay for overnight stops and boost the local economy.
Cornwall and Devon
Two of the busiest and, hence, most affected areas are Cornwall and Devon, which both play host to tight streets, limited parking and a good volume of campers. The regulations in these areas are becoming particularly tough and it is becoming very difficult for campers to find an appropriate spot to park up – especially in rural areas where there isn’t an abundance of campsites.
Knowing the Rules
Unfortunately, the fines imposed for illegally parking overnight are severe and best avoided. It could also be that if you are parked inappropriately and you have an accident, you will find your campervan insurance is invalid. However, you can be savvy about where you can park – many towns offer a permit scheme which applies between 8am and 6pm. As long as you follow these times you are acting well within the law.
Respect for the Area
The most important thing, though, is that campervan owners continue to demonstrate respect for the local area when it comes to stopping overnight. Where you can, buy local and ensure you’re not causing any disturbances to the local people – if there is hope of councils becoming more welcoming to overnight stops then campervan owners need to prove they benefit rather than detriment the local area.
The debate on overnight parking is likely to run for some time, but at the moment there are still a few car parks where it is possible to camp up for the night. It’s best to investigate before you go and remember to leave a good impression wherever you’re travelling.