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“Beautiful setting but pricey and busy!”
Review of Holmsley Campsite

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Holmsley Campsite
Margate, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
77 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Beautiful setting but pricey and busy!”
Reviewed 24 August 2013

We had a lovely time in a beautiful setting but a few things disappointed us! The freezer block service was rubbish which you might think is a trivial thing but can really mess up your catering! The blocks were never fully frozen just cool! It was pretty busy and so a bit noisy at night. There were loads of small children bombing around on bikes very fast and not looking where they were going. The washing up area was ok but the water rarely ran hot. We liked the area very much but at £23 a night a travel lodge would have been better value.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Lin W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (34)
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Ottershaw, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
87 reviews
58 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 August 2013

Spent a weekend here last weekend, it was busy (it's the school holidays after all), but still had a feeling of not being cramped! The middle shower block was queuing on Saturday morning, but a 2 minute walk to the one near the shop meant no queue, in fact, no one in there! The walks are lovely around the campsite, lots of ponies and a little stream for the dog to cool off in!

It's location is great mostly due to it's proximity to Mudeford and Christchurch, both of which were surprisingly not busy, given that we went on a Saturday in the middle of the school holidays! The car parks at both weren't full and the roads not too jammed!

We were quite shocked at the lack of respect for rules though, and the fact that there were no rangers around at night, when people blatantly had open fires! The smell of burning wood is quite different to that of charcoal, so any ranger would have picked it up immediately! Given how dry everything is, I'm surprised at the stupidity of people to have a fire that emits sparks!

I would echo the comments about rock pegs, don't even think about taking the pegs that come with tents, as they will just bend!

Overall though, a great campsite, but if you don't have children, I would recommend avoiding this site during the holidays... Or take ear plugs for those mornings where there's a little one screaming at 5am!!

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank louisamaskell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sussex UK
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 August 2013

we have just returned after a great weekend at Homsley.
as previous posted have said the site is very busy lots of kids on bikes... it really didn't bother us, at night by 10.00 the site was a quiet as anything...
the shop was fantastic well stocked and really good prices.
we have camped, you need to take rock pegs, we also own a caravan and for me i think the site is more suited to camping but that's a personal choice. the staff are really helpful as well we drained the battery on the car and the site staff was more than willing to help get us started.
you will need a car or be prepared to pay for taxi - its £20 each way to Christchurch. there is no bus service close.

overall I was really impressed with the site..

one point don't eat at the cat and fiddle (Harvester) they don't have enough staff it was dirty plates and glasses left on all very sticky tables. they ran out of chicken and ribs!!

Room Tip: take rock pegs
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank manager100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
53 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 August 2013

We stayed at Holmsley over a very wet weekend and had a surprisingly enjoyable time.

The facilities are quite extensive compared to the other New Forest sites, including a takeaway and a playground. The shop sold BBQs and ice, and charged phones. Despite torrential rain the loo blocks seemed reasonably mud-free in the morning. We camped in an area called Plain Heath - lots of flat, open grass a couple of minutes walk from the loo block. The grass was surrounded by trees and shrubs so if you prefer a less open camping spot there were more sheltered places as well. The whole site is fenced so ponies and cattle stay out of the tents!

It is quite true that there were a lot of children, from little ones on stabilisers to teenagers, tearing around on bikes. The old concrete and tarmac pathways of the airfield make excellent cycling surfaces, even when it's been raining. Bike riding seems to be one of the more positive things that children can do for entertainment and it certainly kept plenty of them active and occupied. A large group of campers did stay up till midnight singing very loudly, but as it was absolutely bucketing it down, I felt more a kind of respect than annoyance.

The campsite is quite remote, and there is nowhere within a reasonable walking distance, although the heath means you can happily go for a long ramble in almost any direction. Nearby places to visit by car (or bike if you're fit enough) include the town and beaches of Christchurch and Hengistburyhead, and the New Forest witching village of Burley, which was full of ponies the morning we went there.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JWLovesToTravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 August 2013

I visit this site on a regular basis, the site is a perfect spot in the middle of the forest. In the summer holidays there are lots of children about, but that is to be expected as its school holidays. In my experience most of the children are well behaved and is nice to see them having fun on their bikes, like we used to when we were little. The staff here are very pleasant and always very helpful.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mechelle h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 August 2013 via mobile

Wr have just got bak from a 4 night break at holmsly and I was another lovely stay

First of all I would just like to say that all of you that wrote bad reviews about chavy parents and wild kids get a grip its camping not a 5 star resort in the Bahamas

I think it's great that the campsite is safe enough for kids to have a little bit of independence and be able to go and play with us parents knowing they are safe cause they definatly couldn't do that now days anywhere else!

The staff all all really nice my 1 year old had a very unsettled first night (think he may have been a bit cold) and the warden came down to our tent the check that we were all ok which I thought was nice the shop had everything you need and nice little take away

My 7 year old had great fun playing in the woodland areas and the play area with lots of friends he made

Please ignore bad reviews as holmsly is a really nice site

Just to add once it got dark all the kids went bak to there tents so very quiet nights

  • Stayed August 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Abi M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Birmingham, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 August 2013

I camped here last week as it had been recommended to me as a nice place in the New Forest. Well, from the moment I arrived to the moment I left (earlier than I had planned) I was just amazed at the lack of control parents seem to have over their children.

There is a 5mph speed limit on site, now im not sure whether thats to protect the like a throusand kids on bicycles that seem to want to play chicken with the cars, or the car owners from the thousand kids that seem intent on riding at you.

It really is one big kids playground, it wouldnt surprise me if local mothers just dropped their kids off at the gates each morning as a free playgroup, if you like the sound of squealing children you will enjoy your stay, however, there are no grownups to be seen anywhere, its probably only a matter of time before we read in the press about some kid thats gone missing from this site, its dreadful.

I went to the loo about 7.30am in the morning and theres a girl of about 3 or 4 playing on the swings, so i ask where mummy or daddy were, oh they are still asleep in their caravan she replies,and there were no staff on duty anywhere to be seen. bad bad bad.

The site itself is an old airfield, so its basically a lot of tarmac, i had tent pegs and rubber mallet, however, I broke my mallet, so went to the shop to see if they had anything a little more industrial, but they sold me another rubber mallet, i broke that one too, so I went back and said "your mallet just broke" to which I just got a shrug of the shoulders and a what do you expect me to do about it attitude. Luckily someone behind me offered me the loan of their hammer, which did the job.

The toilet and shower blocks were a bit grubby, ive been to other camp sides that have shelves or cupboards to put your clothes in, this place, you just have a cubicle, no mat, so its a wet floor, so you undress balancing on your shoes, carefully hang your clothes on the small hooks on the back of the door and hope they dont fall off, have your shower, which is a fixed head, but still manages to get spray over your clothes hanging off the door, my tip would be, undress in your tent and go to the showers wrapped in your towel.

The children seem to be on site permantly, which is a surprise as the New Forest is right there for you to go and explore, but they seem more happy cycling around squealing and shouting, again, no idea where the parents are, dont get me wrong, im not a child hater, i have 1 of my own, but I did bring him up to respect other people, but I guess this campsite is aimed more at the lower end of the social spectrum.

I left after 2 days as I couldnt take the noise any longer.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank HappyCamperDude
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Holmsley Campsite

Property: Holmsley Campsite
Address: off A35 Lyndhurst-Christchurch Road | 8 miles SW of Lyndhurst, Southampton BH23 7EQ, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Hampshire > Southampton
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 23 Speciality Lodging in Southampton
Number of rooms: 600
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Holmsley is a campsite steeped in history. Occupying part of what used to be Holmsley Airfield in the Second World War, it is one of 12 wartime airfields and Advanced Landing Grounds in the New Forest. Indeed, the aircraft hard standings and taxiways are now the campsite roads and parking spots! Facilities Premium pitches Tents Touring caravans Motorhomes Trailer tents Jumbo tent pitches Grassy pitches Grass pitch with electric hook up Hardstanding pitch Hardstanding pitch with electric hook up Seasonal pitches Unsheltered site Toilets Showers Washbasins Electric razor sockets Separate disabled facilities Family shower room Chemical toilet disposal Drinking water taps Motorhome service pointstop off Dishwashing facilities Laundry Ice pack freezing facility Gas cylinders Battery charging facility Shop Childrens play area Takeaway Pets welcome The campsite is close to the rural villages of Burley and Bransgore, with shops including a bakery, chemist, and chip shop. The site is predominantly grass, meaning there is a lot of space for the children to play. It also offers direct access to forest walks and safe cycling tracks; ideal for exploring the local flora and fauna with the whole family. Onsite there is a fully equipped shop that sells a wide range of groceries, camping essentials and games to ensure that your holiday runs as smoothly as possible. There is also an excellent take away; perfect after a busy day exploring the forest and when you want to put your feet up in your tent and relax. Opening time will vary throughout the season. Next to the site there is a large heathland which is fantastic for a spot of nature watching. Free-roaming ponies, cattle and deer are frequent visitors, and you might see squirrels, badgers and foxes if you are lucky. New Forest woodlands are thought by the locals to be at their very best in the autumn, during the annual Pannage season. At this time the forest turns crimson and gold and echoes to the sound of rutting deer. Holmsley is close to several stunning beaches including Barton on Sea, with Bournemouth and Poole just a drive away. Premium pitches are available onsite, and there are also toilets, showers and a launderette available. Please remember to bring your rock pegs for this site. Due to the low level of lighting campers must pitch up before dark. Pitch types at Holmsley There are 600 pitches at Holmsley, made up of standard and premium pitch types. This campsite also have space to take RV units. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Holmsley Campsite Hotel Southampton

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