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Alister Smith of our Stags Planning and Design team, discusses the growing popularity of glamping among tourists and also offers some general key insights into South West tourism to elucidate why glamping is an attractive diversification option.
The past decade has seen a steady rise in the popularity of both glamping and domestic tourism throughout the United Kingdom, particularly in the South West. Its rich tapestry of rolling countryside, stunning rural features and enchanting coastal views have made it an ideal destination for travellers choosing to holiday locally and seeking a more luxurious alternative to traditional forms of camping.
Glamping is a significant driving force in the South West’s holiday and tourism industry. Of the approximately 3,000 glamping sites across the UK, more than 10 percent are dotted throughout the South West. A 2019 report by Great British Glamping highlights the region’s dominance in the industry, naming Devon and Cornwall as the top destinations for glampers. Dorset and Somerset have also acquired a reputation as popular glamping locations, their stunning countryside offering an abundance of tranquil scenery, wildlife and outdoor activities.
The popularity of glamping in the region is showing no signs of abating, with industry specialist Edward Busby reporting that “demand is increasing along with supply.” Bristol-based agency Canopy and Stars reports that their revenue has experienced an increase of more than 180 percent since 2017, doubling between 2019 and 2022. The company attributes the long-term growth of the glamping industry to various factors, including consumer concern around the climate crisis and social media trends around glamping and outdoor holidays, as well as the soaring rise in cost of living leading to more local tourism.
With this in mind, rural and farm landowners aiming to diversify their property may wish to consider installing glamping sites, as this option is typically a far more affordable way of enhancing property value than many other forms of development. Furthermore, due to high tourism interest in the South West, the potential returns on such an investment are significant.
Landowners interested in adding glamping sites to their properties have a variety of options to choose from. Glamping accommodations range from pods, shepherd huts, yurts, bell tents, cabins and treehouses to domes, airstreams, hobbits and even railway wagons. However, the addition of such sites requires planning permission, with support for such enterprises varying from council to council and dependent upon the planning policies for the area and the specific location of the site.
For advice acquiring planning permission or designing glamping units, contact Stags’ Planning and Design department at email@example.com or 01392 439046.. With their wealth of local knowledge and expertise, our designers and planning consultants provide hands-on support to help you maximise the value of your property.