They’ve responded to comments made by Visit Cornwall boss Malcolm Bell
Motorhome owners have hit back at the boss of Cornwall’s tourist body over comments he made about motorcaravans visiting the Duchy this summer.
Malcolm Bell, CEO of Visit Cornwall, said that motorhome owners had been causing him “earache” over their calls for cheap overnight parking areas, known as aires which are popular on the continent.
He told Cornwall Live: “Motorhomes are causing me a bit of earache as they want us to open up £1 a night places to park as they’re self-contained, but we’ve said this is not the year to discuss that. A lot of motorhome owners have been asking us to sort these sort of places as they’re used to staying in them abroad.
“We haven’t got the facilities to put them in and it would be a longer debate about whether we ever would, because we’re after the value of tourism not just volume.”
Mr Bell added: “Our view is that motorhomes should be on campsites. Maybe there could be extensions to campsites but we don’t want to see areas covered by campervans and motorhomes.
“With all respect to the motorhome owners, they are a great market, I’ve got nothing against them, we would like to have more but there’s a limit to what we can take in any capacity.”
Cornwall is expected to see 15% more visitors than usual this summer, which Mr Bell stresses is “all we can take anyway”.
Motorhome owners and groups have reacted angrily to his comments.
Steve Haywood, of the Campaign for Real Aires UK – an organisation pushing for more motorhome and campervan stopovers in this country – said: “We are concerned about the misleading statements from Malcolm Bell of Visit Cornwall. It is blatantly obvious from Mr Bell’s comments that he does not understand the touring motorcaravan tourism sector.
Original publication 31 March 2021
Posted on NatCorn 16th April 2021
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