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The glorious history of a caravan

Camber Getaways is now in its 7th year of operation, so i decided it was time we wound back the clock and took a look at the history behind our beloved caravans ....

We can wind the clock back as far as 1800's where caravans were used by farmers for shelter, circus folk and fairground showmen to get their heads down after a day of performing. Travelling communities of Romanies can also be dated back where they would use horse drawn caravans, if you live in the countryside you might be fortunate enough to see these still showcased around.

So lets start in 1840, where Charles Dickens novel 'The Old Curiosity Shop" had a character named Mrs Jarley. She had her waxworks show which would take her around the country staying in her caravan described as 'not a shabby, dingy, dusty cart, but a smart little house upon wheels, with white dimity curtains festooning the windows, and window-shutters of green picked out with panels of a staring red'. It was these that inspired the more modern day touring caravan and also the static caravans we have come to know and love.

1947 was the year the very first static caravan was introduced, made from hardboard and lacking any real structure so werent very robust, but all the same they served their initial purpose before giving in and often had a tendency to warp. These were very basic compared to the luxuries we are used to now, and would only have gas lighting, coal for heating and a single gas burner hob to cook. Running water was also something which lacked, along with multiple bedrooms often relying on one master double and a drop down bed in the living room.

1960's static caravans started to really take off and companies were mass producing to keep up with demand. Bright reds and yellows were used which represented everything about the 60's. By the end of this decade 5amp electricity was being supplied to run electric lighting. Bed formations were starting to develop more similar to how we still sometimes see in pre 2000 caravans of dinette converting into a bed.

1970's caravans started to become sturdier as they were built using pre-finished aluminium panels. Size was gradually growing also and some were getting up to 28ft long. Decor was very orange and browns with floral designs for curtains and upholstery. A big change in this decade was the showering, as by the end of the 70's many models were coming with mains water which allowed for flushing toilets and finally a shower!

1980's started to see development to make a caravan a proper home from home experience. Kitchens were starting to include full size fridges and freezers, with more space to really spend more time cooking. Hot showers, flushed toilets were becoming more of the norm and finally by the end of the decade you could have your TV installed in your caravan!

1990's introduced the many luxuries we are used to now. Double glazing, central heating, piped mains gas were just a few of the things which separated the higher spec caravans and provided the foundations for a real home from home stay. You could now start having microwaves and even video recorders fitted!!

Now in the present day we hardly recognise what the caravans once were. With double 20ft wide lodges becoming more and more popular, wifi fitted, American fridge freezers, washer/dryers ... we have even seen some with built in speaker systems throughout. Not forgetting baths, walk in wardrobes, electric fires with smoke effects, the list is endless. The styles of caravans still vary depending on the manufacturer, but most now include many of our modern day luxuries and we couldn't be happier about it as they provide such a perfect base for anyone to spend their holidays. We see 2, 3 and even 4 bedroom caravans now sleeping up to 10, it really shows how far the development has come. I wonder what will be next???

To view our huge range of caravans available for holiday let see the link below:

Camber Holiday Park - Camber Getaways