What exactly is an Aire?
Site rules for Aires
- Only motorcaravans with onboard facilities will be allowed to use the sites.
- Overnight Parking Only – NO CAMPING BEHAVIOUR ALLOWED.
- Where the site owner requires advance notice the sites may be reserved 24 hours in advance.
- Max stay of 48 hours no return within 7 days.
- If possible parking bays will be separated by a non combustible boundary to maintain a minimum 3m spacing between motorcaravans.
- Length restrictions may be applied, the site listing will show any restrictions.
- All Aires will be open to non members.
- Signage showing the rules must be clearly displayed.
- The signage above should display (LEAVE NO TRACE).
- Where there is a charge for use of the site the collection of this will be the sole responsibility of the site owner.
Sites with services
- If only drinking water is available this will be classed as Overnight Parking Only.
- If black waste disposal is available this will be classed as Motorcaravan Parking with Service Points.
- The preferred method of grey waste disposal is a drive over drain.
- If a drive over drain is not available signage MUST indicate where to dispose of grey waste.
- Where possible sites should include rubbish bins or recycling point.
- If no rubbish disposal on site signage must indicate if there is a disposal point nearby.
What is considered to be ‘Responsible Parking’?
Care for your environment LEAVE NO TRACE
Authorised Parking Spaces only – if sign says NO move on
Motorcaravan service points are the only place to empty waste
Parking not camping – no objects outside of vehicle
Rubbish goes in bins – if full take it away
Always respect and support local businesses
What is an exemption certificate?
A Motorcaravan Exemption Certificate is a certificate which, in certain circumstances, allows a recreational organisation to park on land without a site licence or the need to apply for planning permission. Organisations holding this type of exemption have considerable freedoms in arranging and supervising site facilities. They are therefore expected to acknowledge that the freedoms they enjoy implicitly carry certain responsibilities.
The legislative background
Exemption Certificates are issued under two separate pieces of legislation for motorcaravans:
- For land to be used as an Aire it must be licensed and planning permission is usually necessary. However, Section 2 of, and the First Schedule to, the Caravan Sites & Control of Development Act 1960 (“the 1960 Act”) provide exemptions from the need for a site licence or planning permission.
- Part 5, Class A of the Town & Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order 1995 (“the 1995 Order”) permits the use of land as a touring motorcaravan Aire where a Motorcaravan Exemption Certificate has been issued.
Motorcaravan Exemption Certificates
Motorcaravan Exemption Certificates are intended for organisations that occupy or use non-licensed sites with the landowner’s permission for recreational purposes.
What types of Exemption Certificates are issued and what do they allow an organisation to do?
The First Schedule to the 1960 Act sets out where a site licence is not required. Paragraphs 4, 5 and 6 of the Schedule cover the activities of exempted organisations, Paragraph 5 deals specifically with motorcaravans.
Paragraph 5: Sites Approved by Exempted Organisations
With this exemption, an organisation can select sites for its members to stay on, by issuing certificates to the landowner or occupier. These certificates are valid for up to one year. Non-members are allowed to stay on the site if the organisation and the landowner agree to it.
Organisations exempted under Paragraph 5 may issue certificates (valid for up to one year) for particular sites, stating that the land has been approved by the organisation for the use of its members for the purposes of recreation. These sites are known as “Aires”.
- No more than 5 caravans can be stationed on a Paragraph 5 site at any one time.
- Before issuing a Certificate an exempted organisation is expected to have a system for consulting neighbours and the relevant local licensing authority.
- Organisations which issue Certificates are also expected to have systems in place to inspect their sites to check that the terms of the Certificate are being observed and for dealing with any enquiries or complaints from the public about their sites.
- Certificates are to be issued to the occupiers of the land.
What is the difference between ‘Camping’ and ‘Parking’?
Camping is the act of making a camp. This is usually done on a campsite and involves setting up your habitation unit (tent, caravan, motorhome or campervan), often setting out an awning with outside wind breaks, setting out tables, chairs and a sun shade, setting up a barbeque and so on. In a camp site this paraphernalia has to be contained within the boundary of the area (pitch) that has been either allocated to you or you have chosen. Setting up camp takes a good while and is a fun part of a camping holiday, but is only done if the habitation unit is going to stay in the same spot for the duration of the holiday. Packing everything away takes a good while longer than setting up as one has to figure out how to get everything back in the bags it came out of.
Parking for motorcaravans on an Aire must be just that – you stop, pull on the handbrake and put the kettle on. Because the modern motorcaravan is completely self-contained there is no need to put anything outside of the vehicle. The ‘No Camping’ rule that is required on Aires means that should you need (or want) to leave immediately you can do so without having to collect your belongings together – you just fire-up the engine and drive away leaving nothing behind.
Generally, most folk want to park for a single night (or maybe two) and then move on to the next place of interest. Those camping want to use the campsite as a base for the duration of their holiday and visit places of interest by car/bike/public transport or walking.