Perran Sands Review 2019

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For those of you who don’t know, Perran Sands is a Holiday Park owned and managed by Haven Holidays (Bourne Leisure). For total transparency this is an independent review, I have not been gifted or paid in any way. We were however gifted a voucher towards our holiday from Family Fund. You can find my previous post about Family Fund and what they do here.

We are a family of four and this was our seventh year staying at Perran Sands, but the first time visiting in May Half-Term and the first time trying an adapted caravan. This is usually our annual summertime holiday in July, but this year we had squeezed in an overdue trip to Disneyland Paris!

About Perran Sands

Perran Sands is an average size holiday park in North Cornwall, in a small seaside town named Perranporth, it’s pretty much the surfing capital of Cornwall! It has its own private beach which is accessible from the park, but please be advised due to the stairs it isn’t suitable for wheelchair users or those with mobility issues! Believe me after a day at the beach, its a killer!

Perran Sands

Check-In & Finding Our Way Around

Check is always smooth. Like last year, check in was inside the Dune’s Bar. We were greeted by an enthusiastic and friendly team member. He confirmed our accommodation and pointed us in the right direction of where our caravan would be. The good thing about Perran Sands is that it’s extremely easy to find your way around, the signposting is very obvious. If you do find yourself lost, staff members are often on hand to point you in the right direction.

As a side note: This year we booked an adapted caravan for the first time, however, our son who has special needs was not impressed. This is not reflected against Haven and their standard of caravan, it was neat, tidy and had direct access to the park but unfortunately, he likes his routine and he didn’t settle. So I spoke to reception to see if there was any possibility we could move. Thankfully we were moved to a three-bedroom prestige caravan, with a partial sea view for four nights (we had to cut out trip short). Our caravan was located at the top of the park in an area called ‘Pentreath View’ and ironically right next door to the caravan we stayed in the year before. I have included a few photographs of the standard below.

Our caravan included: Microwave, dishwasher, hob, cooker and hood with fan, fridge with small freezer, digital TV with DVD player, Bluetooth sound system, ensuite toilet, TV in bedroom, plenty of storage, radiators (believe me it was cold for May) and plenty of space for a large family to spread out.

 

On-Site Facilities

Let’s talk about food: Like most holiday parks, there are some great facilities onsite including The Surf Bay Restaurant, Cooks Fish & Chip Shop, Papa Johns Pizza, mini supermarket and laundrette. There is a large entertainment complex including an indoor and outdoor swimming pool and the new addition of an outside lazy river. Two bars ‘The Dunes bar’ which was closed during our recent trip and the ‘Live Lounge’ where the main entertainment is.

We have eaten on previous visits at the Surf Bay, it’s a cross between a Harvester and a Beefeater. Good quality food, with a bar located outside. You are unable to pre-book so you can expect a wait during busy times but if you are lucky you get to eat in the ‘camper’. Great atmosphere but busy! Always busy.

There are two takeaways onsite ‘Cooks’ Fish & Chips and Papa Johns. Both can be busy at times but convenient. Papa Johns, even deliver to your caravan! Both of which offer a decent meal, good size portions and not hugely expensive compared to nearby Perranporth.

Keeping the little ones and big ones entertained: The advantage of a holiday park is that they offer an array of things for young and old to get involved in. Haven do offer activity bundle passes 12 activities for £50 and 24 activities for £100. We’ve personally never used them, so I can’t really comment but they appear popular with other visitors and include archery and aqua gliders.

The swimming pools are open to everyone from 9.30am, I would suggest arriving early as we queued for over 45 minutes to enter due to the sheer volume of people in the pools. There is one inside a large pool, a separate slide, a smaller toddler pool and a large outdoor pool with lazy river. It was too cold to venture outside this year but the lazy river is extremely popular and worth investigating.

Aside from the main park, there are surf lessons, football pitches and plenty of parks dotted around and if you are more for arcades and pool tables, the Live Lounge area has that as well. During our visit, there were large extended families, with lots of younger children.

If like us you prefer to venture further afield, Perran Sands placed you at a great location as a base. You are an 8-minute drive away from Perranporth where you will find shops, bars, food outlets, ice cream and quaint gift shops. Newquay is only a 15 – 20-minute drive away where you can find a large town, restaurants, bars, supermarkets. Truro is by far the largest town at just 25 minutes away, with its beautiful cathedral, cobbled streets and Primark (sorry, I’m a sucker for a bit of shopping). There are also some amazing coast drives with the most amazing beaches, Porth, Mawgan Porth, Watergate Bay and Crantock just to name a few.

Top Tips

As a family who like the home from home feel, Perran Sands offers us the option of eating in or eating out while not feeling obligated to eat on site. There are so many options from camping to beach houses, from glamping to chalets. Over our previous visits, we have stayed in various types of caravan class so there is a budget for everyone from standard to platinum with decking.

  1. Booking early can save you ££££. We often book nine months in advance and save 25%. Sometimes up to 50% depending on the offers available.
  2. In peak season months (July/August) you will often queue for everything from getting into the Live Lounge to accessing the launderette. So it’s best to get there early to avoid disappointment as Summer 2017 we couldn’t even get into the main Live Lounge to get seats at 6.15pm!
  3. If you are interested in activities, book in advance. You will be surprised how quick everything fills up.
  4. There is so much to see and do in the local area, from zoos and waterparks to railways and theme parks (Flambards is A…mazing!)
  5. Get up and out early, in peak summer you can imagine how busy places get. We’ve struggled to park in Newquay in August due to the people.

So there you have it, next time you are considering a ‘staycation’ maybe Perran Sands is worth a look. Perhaps, you’ve previously been? Maybe you are staying this year? Let me know if you have your own comments to add.

If you like what you read, please stick around and check out my other posts, I have posts ranging from careers to family life. I aim to post on Monday’s and Thursday’s! I say aim, as I juggle family life with working Monday to Friday so sometimes the time runs away with me!

How Family Fund has helped us and how they could help you!

A Little Bit About Family Fund

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Family Fund, like so many other charities, helps families like ours across the UK. If you are raising a disabled or child who is seriously ill and they are under the age of 17 and are on a low income, Family Fund may be able to assist you as a family or the individual child.

Last year, Family Fund provided over 88,000 grants and services worth over £33 million to families across the UK but without regular money coming in they wouldn’t be able to continue the great work they do. We were one of those families. Thanks to their kindness and grants, we have been able to proper time together as a family.
Family Fund was first established in 1973, and the first grant of £26 for hospital visiting costs was issued on 1 April 1973. In 1996, Family Fund became an independent charitable trust. Today, they are funded by the four UK governments, private donations and income they generate through the work of their Family Fund Business Services.

Our Story

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We discovered Family Fund through our son’s Occupational Therapist. We wanted to go on a proper family holiday, but having recently given up work to care for our disabled son, we only had one income, and it was a struggle. So we discovered Family Fund, and I was pleasantly surprised by how straight forward the application process was. Our application was sent via the post with the supporting documentation, and it was roughly four weeks before we had our first approval. We’d applied for a Haven holiday voucher. Like most charities, you have to have a particular item or holiday in mind when you apply. They offer Ipads, white goods, garden modifications, holidays, clothing, just to name a few. You can apply, however, to change your funding once it has been approved if you want to change your award. We have never requested two items, but I have friends who have applied for money towards a holiday and garden equipment like a trampoline.

Once the voucher is awarded. It takes seven days to be credited to Haven or the appropriate holiday provider. Our first voucher we’d already booked our trip, so I called up and told them about our award, and they credited the amount to our holiday. This has since changed, and you can’t use the voucher for any holidays already booked. You can, of course, book two trips and use the voucher towards both.

What it has given us

We are no longer cramped in a budget hotel, in one room having to go to bed at 9pm with our son, having a caravan provides us with the flexibility to put him to bed and sit in another room and spend time with our daughter. We have found both Haven and Perran Sands to be so accommodating. Thomas is sensitive to noise, so we have always requested a caravan away from the entertainment centre. For the first time, this year have requested an accessible caravan as it was a struggle last year.
We have used Family Fund now for three or four years, I logon to our online account and once a year request a Haven holiday. They limit you to once a year applications for obvious reasons although in exceptional circumstances the may accept a further application.

How can you help them

It is often underestimated how much it can cost to raise a disabled child. In fact, on average, it costs three times more to raise a disabled child compared to a child without additional needs. Family Fund understands this and is committed to help families, improve their quality of life and help them feel included. A big key to their success is fundraising.
Every penny raised will help Family Fund continue to develop and deliver new ways to support families raising disabled or seriously ill children.
Whether you fancy hosting your own Messy Tea Party or Dress Fun Friday on the 21st June 2019. There are still so many families to help! Please check out their website for more information about how you could help.
If you have any questions about donating to, or fundraising for Family Fund, you can speak to their Fundraising Team on 01904 550033 or email fundraising@familyfund.org.uk.
*We are not affiliated, associated, authorised, endorsed by, or in any way officially connected with the Family Fund or Haven Holidays.*