Simon Mortimer

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It struck me as I was laying out this years Awards issue (in shops mid-October) just how much caravans have improved in terms of technology and materials.

In the Bailey Pegasus we have a van that is strong enough to support a car on its roof, despite being light enough to be towed by an average family car. Manufacturing costs have decreased, due to efficient use of materials and production lines. Progress marches on unabounded, and we all benefit from the results.

It struck me as I was laying out this years Awards issue (in shops mid-October) just how much caravans have improved in terms of technology and materials.

In the Bailey Pegasus we have a van that is strong enough to support a car on its roof, despite being light enough to be towed by an average family car. Manufacturing costs have decreased, due to efficient use of materials and production lines. Progress marches on unabounded, and we all benefit from the results.Tl_extracted 1

But I wonder if the same can be said for the styling of these modern marvels. The average caravan today looks very much the same as those produced twenty years ago. In fact, you could even say that they are starting to look more boxy.

It wasn't always this way. Back in the fifties, sixties and seventies caravans had so much more flair in their styling. They had beautiful rounded shapes, chromed details in abundance and ornate wheel covers. Tl_extracted 1

But most of all, they had colour. Caravans were available in all shades of colours and interpretation. Interiors were no exception, with expansive use of real wood to provide environments that still look warm and inviting after years of use.Tl_extracted 1

Unfortunately most modern caravans seem to follow a formula of white exteriors with beige laminated interiors - barring a few exceptions. Surely now that most of the practical problems have been resolved and ironed out, it is time to start looking at bringing back some real style to the modern caravan.Tl_extracted 1

Then one day we might look back on todays caravans as fondly as those classics from the sixties.

 

Simon is the art editor of Practical Caravan magazine

simon.mortimer@haymarket.com

 

 

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