Glamping site ‘aimed at boomers’ pitched for Monmouthshire
Twm Owen, local democracy reporting
A campsite with safari-style tents in the Monmouthshire countryside will aim to appeal to “baby boomers and Instagram influencers”.
Plans for the site, with up to six tents, at Rhewel Farm, which is about a mile from Chepstow, are intended to capitalise on the growth of glamping which, the application states, is fueled by the cost-of-living crisis, growing interest in sustainable tourism and anxiety over foreign holidays.
Information submitted as part of a planning application claims “staycations” – people holidaying at home rather than abroad, including luxury camping, known as glamping – have been boosted by all three factors.
A report, prepared by specialists the Rural Planning Co, on behalf of applicant J Harding, states: “People also want to discover new more obscure, unknown locations.
“Growth has been experienced among the baby boomer generation – with more time and money on their hands. Another primary driver is the growing demand for weekend getaways for stressed-out workers.
“Fueled by popular culture, travel bloggers, and Instagram influencers, rural glamping is growing in popularity.”
Baby boomers are defined by the UK Government as those born between 1946 and 1966, and according to the application the site isn’t intended to attract large numbers of young holidaymakers.
The application states: “There is no intention or desire to offer this form of accommodation to large or young groups of people. The overall tranquility of the site is part of its appeal and a major selling point.”
Three “luxury safari tents” and a further three “woody safari tents” will each be capable of accommodating six people, which the application describes as a family unit.
The tents will be made of natural materials with colour finishes to blend in with the surrounding grassland and woodland while the safari tent fabric will be a “natural, earthy brown colour” to “camouflage the tents within the landscape throughout the different seasons”.
Each will have a self-contained bathroom and kitchen while a mobile toilet and shower are also included in the plans along with car parking and access, which will be from the existing track from the A48. There will be a parking space for each tent while there will also be secure cycle storage.
The application also covers change of use permission covering the field, which is currently used for agriculture, and the supporting statement says uncertainties from Brexit and the UK’s major supermarkets make tourism an increasingly important sector to the local economy.
Monmouthshire’s rights of way officer has said the applicants, who say they want to encourage visitors to use local paths and travel by sustainable transport if possible, should be aware a footpath runs alongside the site.
It is anticipated the site would provide “immediate” employment to “at least” one person on a part-time basis to run and market it while the income will support the diversification of the existing farm business.
A previous application for glamping pods on land, in woodland, adjacent to the site was withdrawn.
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.