I have driven past this site for years due to nearby work and have always wanted to go there with my young family, with the need to road test a new van, the time was nigh!
Booking - no issue
Finding pitch - no issue
Everything seemed fantastic, until the cracks started to appear. This is in all honesty a site that caters for stored and permanent tourers and unfortunately for the less salubrious members of our society. Every single adult appeared to be carrying a bottle of beer,which to be fair can be a given on some sites, especially of the weekend.
Then the music started, not quiet in the background music, but full on drum and bass. I had to check we had not stumbled into Glastonbury festival by accident! This was followed by grown men watching groups of children fighting on the floor, not sure what to make of that, draw your own conclusions. This was followed on the second night by the same music/alcohol/child fighting but with the added mix of the unmistakable smell of cannabis wafting through the air. This was mentioned to the warden who was aware, but did not seem to be too perturbed.The persons involved even had loud conversations regarding the purchase of cannabis, with not a care for the world. On both nights the music thundered on, well into the small hours. Wardens when contacted seemed quite happy for this to continue, more a case of I can't hear it so you are on your own.
I didn't think that the situations could get and more convoluted until 1.30 am on the Saturday night, the Police arrived in force, 2 vans and a patrol car.
In the morning the fog cleared. The site around the offenders van and pod was covered in empty beer cans and bottles, with plenty of small children running through the detritus. Upon leaving the girl at the desk was unconcerned with what had happened and even admitted that the staff were aware of the use of illegal drugs on the site, but as I was told 'it's hard to tell what people are going to be like before they turn up'. As knowledge of the drug use was known, but nothing was done, it lead me to believe that this was a common occurrence, almost a collusion if you like.
I left quite saddened due to the site being quite lovely, the facilities being adequate with the showers being the push button variety with lashings of hot water. The bins were overflowing in the morning due to the amount of people on the site. Lots of nice flowers though....
All in all, if drugs, alcohol and music to the wee hours (with the potential of being arrested) are your thing, the Royal Umpire is for you. If not stay well clear, I know we will ......