About Us at The Camping Equipment Shop

First and foremost, we're campers ourselves. We're not faceless company directors, sat in a big shiny office and holidaying in a hotel. We're campers, and we love camping.

This is a family run business, not a huge corporation, and it's not the only thing we run ...we have children and pets too.

So we're probably pretty much like you, and you may well find yourselves on a campsite next to us sometime. That's why we say: Run By Campers, For Campers.

It all started when Andrew (that's him on the right) was about 8 years old and, following much nagging, persuaded his Mum & Dad to buy him a cheap tent so he could sleep in the garden at home.

That wasn't enough of course and, a couple of years later, he went camping with his cousin Jim for a few days down at Frensham Ponds. In truth it wan't that far from home by modern standards but for a primary school boy, 1/3 of a century ago, it was a huge adventure. The campsite was basic by modern standards but Andrew loved it all, and was truly bitten by the camping bug.

A few years later, whilst still at school and still too young to drive, he was wild camping alone on an old airfield for about a week and loving every minute of it.

Shortly after turning 17 and passing his bike test he loaded his (now elderly & poorly patched!) tent and sleeping bag, together with a camping stove that his Dad had bought to help survive the powercuts of 1970s Britain and a couple of army-surplus mess tins, onto the back of his Suzuki GS1000S motorbike and headed off to the Cornwall coast where he spent a happy week on a campsite (with all mod-cons, even a flushing toilet...) within a few hundred yards of the sea.

It didn't take Andrew long to realise that location, scenery, and above all freedom, were far more important to him than 5 Star luxury.

As the years passed he travelled into Africa with his trusty (and heavily modified) Land Rover Discovery Commercial "Big Car" and tent (newly bought for this trip, together with a petrol-burning cooker), for a couple of months, spending many nights camping in the Sahara Desert dunes and on oueds (dried up river beds). Even when near hotels he shunned them, preferring instead to camp in the gorge with the goat-herders.

Later still that same tent found itself strapped onto the back of a motorbike (by now a BMW R1150GS - see picture on right) as Andrew travelled around Europe stopping on various campsites and at various bike rallies. As the BMW dealer noted, that bike covered more miles in its first year than most do in 5 years.

Time took its toll of course and as Andrew settled into married life, and children, so his motorbike, small tent and single-burner stove ceased to be a viable method of taking family holidays.

He took the plunge in Germany one day, bought a second-hand Hymer Camp 59 motorhome (on a Fiat Ducato chassis), drove it back to the UK and went through the registration process. That motorhome became a well-established family friend and covered countless miles (or rather kilometres as it's left hand drive with a kph speedo) in numerous countries, and remained happy and comfortable even with 2 children and a dog on board. It also saw use at race-tracks, as a support vehicle, so we know that it works well in the dead of winter too (even -10C outside only needs the heating on tickover to be cosy inside...).

As Andrew's family grew, so did their need for space, and Andrew returned to Germany to buy a larger motorhome. This time it's a Concorde 720ST on a Mercedes Sprinter chassis, and the whole family loves it. In some respects the quality of the interior finish, and in particular the furniture, doesn't seem as good as the older Hymer's. However, as it's built on a 5 tonne chassis everything is much more durable, and the RWD Sprinter happily goes places that the FWD Fiat/Talbot couldn't even dream of.

So Andrew is a dedicated camper, as are his wife and the rest of his family.

And when we say here, that we understand what camping is about and what campers need, we speak from our own experience and many years on (and off) campsites.

 

The Camping Equipment Shop: Run By Campers, For Campers.

 

To read more,  see our Camping Equipment Blog at http://blog.campingequipmentshop.co.uk

 

Not sure why there's a difference between what these buttons say and our Twitter page (which is about 10% higher)...

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...but I'm sure there's a logical explanation!

 

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