Peter BaberSee other News articles filed in ‘Shows and events’ written by Peter Baber
As the Caravan, Camping and Motorhome Show gets into full swing this weekend, we've come up with a few things that you should keep an eye out for, including new caravan launches, awnings and accessories.
Newcomer Boondock has already shown its Cub and Grizzly trailers at a few country shows, but this is the first time they have been to any caravan-related event.
Both the Cub and its bigger, higher-spec brother, the Grizzly, have a timber frame with fibreglass seals, covered with a stone-chip outer shell for extra hard wear.
The pair include a double bed (with that in the Grizzly being an impressive 2m long), while among the options for the Grizzly is a galley on the rear.
Company founder Dugald Humphreys says he is hoping to provide a trailer that lets people get up and go quickly, without the hassle of having to find a larger tow car or putting up a tent in a gale.
The price of the Cub, with an unladen weight of just 400kg, is £5995. The Grizzly, with an unladen weight of 560kg, should cost about £12,995 OTR.
Look out, too, for another innovative product for which this firm has exclusive UK-distribution rights.
The Roadshower fits to the roof of your towcar (it will also fit onto motorhomes) and its black cover can heat water to a temperature of about 40 degrees within a couple of hours. Depending on the model, it can hold between 15 and 37 litres of water.
Lunar's new Quasar is on display; the 696 is an 8ft-wide model following in the footsteps of the 686, which was launched at the October show last year. Its washroom straddles the centre and can be completely partitioned off.
Behind it, you'll find room for the children, with two fixed bunks on the offside and a dinette on the nearside that can be converted into two more bunks.
The lounge features L-shaped seating, while the L-shaped kitchen facing the front should mean that the chef doesn't miss out on any conversation.
Aside from the new model, Lunar also has its full 2019 range on display at its stand, including the Alarias and the budget Venus range.
Camperlands, which is already sole UK distributor for the Isabella-owned Camp-Let range of trailer tents, should be bringing a tiny new tourer to the show, currently known as the TransCamper Mini-Camp.
The caravan has a hard GRP roof with an interior that includes seating, a table, shelving and a double bed. It will also have mains and 12V electrics.
With a kerbweight of 35kg, it's designed to be easy to move around when not hitched. It's marketed particularly at older people who feel they can no longer manage a trailer tent or caravan, but still want to go camping.
With an MTPLM of just 750kg, it should also be easily towed by smaller cars. Expect an OTR price of around £8,000.
Coachman has every 2019 model on display, except the VIP 570.
Swift has taken most of its 2019 range to the show, including the anniversary-edition Eccles range and the Base Camp.
Adria, in contrast, is displaying a selection of its caravans, including the new twin-axle Adora 623 DT Sava, as well as the Action 361 LT. Other caravans on their display include two more Adoras, the 612 DL Seine and the 613 DT Isonzo; two Alteas, the 542 DT Severn and 552 UP Trent; and the upmarket Alpina 613 UL Colorado.
Among the many awnings on display this year will be the new range from Prima, the Classic Canopy. Like all awnings produced by the Bailey sister brand, this is an air awning. But as its name implies, it's designed to look more like a conventional awning, with a pitched roof. The more typically shaped Deluxe Infinity range will also be on view.
Look out for the new-season ranges from Outwell. The first of these, the Ripple 320SA, should be on display in the piazza as you walk into the show. With an RRP of £949.99, it's part of the Danish manufacturer's more upmarket Nordic Shore collection.
This features Outwell's Smart Air System, which has one point of inflation and a pole-free system for sealing the awning to the caravan. You can see more Nordic Shore models, including Reed and Tide, in Hall 1. Here you will also find the cheaper Nordic Coast collection, featuring the Power Air System of preshaped tubes, including both Cove and Bay.
Westfield has no brand-new products at the show; but at Quest Leisure's caravan awnings stand in Hall 1, you will find the Dorado 400 Pro, designed to be lightweight, and the Gemini 390 Pro. This is part of a range that comes with an Advanced Air System, which lets you choose single- or multiple-point inflation.
All of Westfield's awnings are also geared up to have interior LED lights.
We don't tend to focus much on trailer tents. But it is perhaps worth making an exception here, because this show sees the debut of the Opus UK- and European-specific off-road model.
Some 18 months in development, this has all the features of the on-road models, which will also be on display, including air-tent technology that means you can put up the tent in 90 seconds.
This model is also a purpose-built off-road design with extra ground clearance, so you really should be able to take it anywhere.
Take a look at this range of trailer tents, distributed by Camperlands and now owned by Isabella. Made of quick-drying acrylic material, they include seating, electrics, a shower connection and hose, and a slatted bed. They cost between £6000 and £8500.
Other attractions and opening times
The Caravan, Camping and Motorhome Show - which takes place at the NEC in Birmingham - includes the usual line-up of celebrity speakers, mainly in the Freedom to Go theatre, compéred by show regular Rowland Rivron.
This time you can also expect to hear from adventurer Alastair Humphreys, travel blogger Claire Hall and former Great British Bake Off contestant Karen Wright.
Others keen to show you just how easy it is to cook in a caravan include the Chef Campers and BBQ expert Richard Holden.
If you are new to towing, there's a chance to try it out with Camping and Caravanning Club experts to guide you. This includes an opportunity to test drive a car from show sponsors Hyundai.
If you'd prefer just to brush up your reversing skills, you can do that too, with the show's Freedom to Go experts.