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“Nice stay”

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The Star Caravan & Camping Park
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 29 August 2014 via mobile

Stayed for 2 nights the site was very clean staff were pleasant and friendly was given a plot by the park so my little was able to go and play overall happy with our stay my little boy loved it there it is a short drive to alton towers although we didn't go there and about a half hour drive to water world aqua park which my son loved. Very family friendly

  • Stayed: August 2014
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
3  Thank Misshyw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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100 - 106 of 170 reviews

Reviewed 27 August 2014

Stayed for 2 nights self catering. Very clean everything you could wish for in the caravan. Nothing going on on site. Chio van visited saturday night. Very good idea, fish nice, but chips felt like they had been dipped several times. Not cheap at £6 per portion. Would return due to proximity of Alton Towers.

Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
1  Thank Springwaterclose
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 August 2014 via mobile

I stayed here for one night with a few friends during august bank holiday. It was pleasant and well run, with all the amenities that are needed.
The shop was quite expensive for the little things that you might have forgotten but otherwise a really nice place.
I'd stay here again if I needed to be in the area again in the future.

Stayed: August 2014, travelled with friends
1  Thank Turkish_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 August 2014

We decided to pitch at The Star Campsite following great reviews about camping there. In the main the campsite is fantastic, and a perfect base .... if you drive. If you are using public transport you may struggle a little bit.

First an overview of the site....
Alton, The Star has the following facilities on or around the site for campers.

Members' and non-members' tents are welcome. This is not the case with all Camping and Caravanning pitches so a must for checking before you book anywhere.
Grass only pitch (with or without electric) available.
Flushing toilets
Washbasins
Showers
Dishwashing facilities
Childrens play area
Gas cylinders - tho only refills and only large ones... none suitable for camping stoves.
Pets welcome
Public transport within 1 mile
family bathroom
Drinking water taps
Washing Machines
Ice pack freezing
Ball games (in a small designated area in the middle of the tents)
Payphone

Of course caravans and trailer tents are all welcome but I can't comment on these.



Arrival

To get to the campsite from the bus stop it is a short walk up a road. it is worth noting that this road can be very busy and has no proper footpaths (not that great if you have a case - the path you see on the picture is uneven and stony). You have to cross the main road (no easy feet) then cross again to get on the 'path'. You then cross back over to get to the campsite. There is a large corner so it's not very safe and you have to really take a lucky dart.

The reception is not always manned and we waited for someone to arrive. As others were waiting we had a little wait but this was ok as there were plenty of leaflets to look at and a really helpful folder with plenty of local information in.

We were checked in easily, given a leaflet about the campsite with the shower block pointed out then advised where to pitch our tent. The freedom here was brilliant, we were told "anywhere on the field behind the white posts", with the further up you go the flatter it gets...... and the further away from the toilets. And advised to keep a 6m distance from anyone else.

We decided (who decided!!) to pitch as far to the top end of the site as possible!! As the site wasn't very busy it meant the kids had loads of room to run about and enjoy themselves while we battled with the tent.

The grass was soft and perfect for pitching as the tent pegs sank in with little effort but not soo much they came straight back out.

You have some stunning views from here tho.

Facilities
As we didn't use all the facilities I cannot comment on all of them. Here's how we found what we did use.

Toilets/ washbasins/ showers - the showers were lovely (my husband advises me). A long walk from the tent but when you are camping and up at 6am there's really no rush is there.
There is a small toilet/ wash block on the tent field which was handy. However the cubicles were very small and anyone over a size 16 may struggle. I'm a 10/12 and even I had difficulty getting in and out of them because the doors open inwards. Even my toddler got stuck in them.
The locks are only accessible from inside the cubicles too .... hence a panic set in when I heard "I can't get out" from my youngest. I had visions of scaling the doors to get him out but thankfully he managed to unlock it. (with a lecture afterwards about why I tell them not to lock doors!)

Children's play area - the play area is really nice with plenty for the kids to do. They were rather disappointed that they couldn't play on the tyres due to them being in constant use by older children who were misusing them and obviously had no parental control or manners. On the plus side there were some lovely older children and all the other equipment was empty. It is situated right next to the main 'road' into and out of the site which would concern me if I had let the boys go alone, thankfully is was a long trek from our tent so we had to stay with them.

Shop - the campsite shop sells the basics. However it's opening times leave a lot to be desired. It is open 9-10.30 am and then 4-6pm. No good at all for getting bacon/ sausages/ eggs first thing in the morning or stocking up for the following day when you return from a day out. It would also have been really useful to have an accessible hot drink machine for those who were unable to store milk and needed a warm up. Had the shop been open from 7 we would have bought our brekkie ingredients both days. Had they sold hot drinks we would have bought plenty.
I *think* if there is someone there they will sell from the shop as it is in the main reception area, however I wouldn't like to guarantee this. It is also cash only and there are no cash points on site.

BBQ's etc- The club rule is that these must be raised off the ground on the bricks that can be obtained near the bins. which is fair enough as no one wants to burn the grass. sadly there were no bricks and we had to trawl the campsite to find anything suitable and lug a very heavy block back to the tent. Again probably not the fault of the owners but the tourists who cannot put things back when they have finished with them.

Departure
As there was no facilities or places to buy breakfast early enough to cook it and then pack up (and we were starving) we were packed up and off the campsite on the 10.18 bus (which yes was packed with Alton Towers staff).

Price
I found this reasonably priced, it cost us £55 for 2 nights as non-members which seems in line with other campsites in the area.

Location
You really are in the middle of nowhere. And although both public transport and local amenities are out of the campsites control and cannot reflect on them in any way but it's helpful for me to include the review for others who may consider staying.

Public Transport - The main bus service is the First Potteries 32/ 32A. The fare is £1.50 each way (or £5.50 for a day rider). The X39 also serves the stop in the height of season but (from what I can gather from the website) costs considerably more (£10 for an adult return).
The buses are busy, infrequent and change their routes depending on the time of day. It is essential you take a bus timetable with you - whilst they may stop at a certain stop at 2 o'clock they may not at 5. To get to Alton Towers early there is a bus (as it currently stands) at 9.18 am and takes around 6 minutes. This bus is also packed with staff members who rarely give up their seat for children. The next one is not until 11.18.
Coming back from Alton Towers there is a bus at 5.38 and 6.38. After this there is one at 8.03. The next bus is not until 11.47. As these run from Uttoexter if you choose to go elsewhere for tea afterwards you really need to plan your trip early (i.e. leaving AT at around 4.30/5pm) or you won't get back to the campsite (and a taxi from Uttoxeter to AT is £20+)
Remember these buses are also PACKED with AT staff. Who will queue jump, argue with the driver and take up all the seats. They also have an inability to walk to the back of the bus standing right in the front making everyone push through them. I also overheard someone saying that a driver refused them a journey the other day saying they had to give the AT staff priority. How true this is I don't know and why they don't run double deckers throughout the day shocks me.
I would strongly advise getting in the queue at AT at least 15 minutes early if not more to guarantee getting on. People were left behind on the 6.34 run (despite the bus not being full)

The bus to Uttoxeter is £3.40 each single (or £5.50 return). I cannot comment on the route to Hanley as we didn't go that way. I believe Cheedle has plenty of shops/ restaurants etc but again it's all about timing the buses properly (and we had missed it by 5 minutes on Wednesday!).

Amenities- Ermmm..... non-existent within walking distance. There is 1 pub, Ye Olde Star Inn and it is priced in line with other non-chain pubs (see separate review). other than that you have to travel to Cheadle, Hanley or Uttoexeter for anything. Not a problem at all with a car, on public transport (as you can see above) not as easy.

Verdict
The perfect campsite IF you have a car and/or the facilities to keep cold food cold (e.g. electric hookup). We would probably stay again as it is so close to Alton Towers, however due to it's remote location to other amenities it wouldn't be our first choice. I believe there is a walk through to AT that avoids the busy main road, however it doesn't look like you can exit the campsite on the other side to the main entrance which means a good 20 minute+ walk to get to the start (2 minutes if you can get there from the back of the site). Then about half an hours walk.

Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
1  Thank chickywiggle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 August 2014

It was our first trip out alone in our new caravan , the manager was on hand to help us out and give us some valuable tips on reversing onto a plot . very friendly and helpful staff , lovely clean facilities and very close to Alton towers . Had a great meal in local pub lord nelson . we would definitely stay at the site again . for a large site its very quiet and peaceful . the only downside was the pitch we chose was on a small incline so definitely needed wedges/levellers .

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Dani E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 August 2014 via mobile

My children and I visited here for 4 nights recently and found no faults. Great location for alton towers, super friendly staff and very clean facilities. First time camping for twenty years or so and was a great all round experience. Weather was dreadful but hey ho, can't have it all. Definitely would return if I am ever in the vicinity.

Stayed: August 2014
3  Thank Steve R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 August 2014 via mobile

We have just returned from this camp site we used as a base to visit Alton towers ( it is literally 1 mile away) we managed to hit a lot of traffic on the way up there from wales and telephoned the office to let them know, we didn't get there until 8pm and the staff were so helpful (even though it was late)
The park is clean, the pitches are a good size, the facilities were clean and easily accessible, its a safe site and even has take away food on site, we were recommended a pub opposite the road entrance and wow an amazing meal, infact a perfect little weekend at this campsite and very reasonable with the prices

Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
1  Thank tarynhairdressa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Star Caravan & Camping Park

Address: Star Road | Nr Alton Towers, Stoke-on-Trent, Alton ST10 3DW, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Staffordshire > Alton
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 4 Speciality Lodging in Alton
Also Known As:
The Star Caravan And Camping Park
The Star Caravan & Camping Park Hotel Alton

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