UPDATED JUNE 2020
Are there any rules? Yes – you can find them below. They are mostly about respect and responsibility, which we’re sure you would show anyway, but we still need to spell them out. Please be aware that if you or anyone you are responsible for behaves in a way that may disturb other campers, you will be asked to leave immediately. And no one wants that.
What are the measures you are taking regarding coronavirus? Our primary concern is safety – not only of everyone who visits Woodfire Camping, but also that of our local community and society at large. With this in mind we are taking the measures below. However, we cannot be everywhere at once policing these, so we ask and expect our lovely campers to abide by them please at all times and respect the social distancing of others. We have been awarded the National Tourist Board of England’s Industry Standard mark meaning that our business has followed government and industry COVID-19 guidelines, has a Risk Assessment in place and processes to maintain cleanliness and aid social distancing. Amongst other things, we are:
- providing contactless check-in, payment in advance and a single contactless/card payment at the end wherever possible for anything consumed while onsite.
- introducing a one-way system in the car park, handles for pallet trolleys and a cleaning station for use before and after.
- increasing cleaning in common-use areas, providing hand sanitiser in all toilets and soap at sinks.
- closing off the middle tooth-brushing sink.
- deep-cleaning our pre-pitched tents between stays.
- marking social distance queueing points wherever necessary.
- providing a cleaning station for our wood wheelbarrows.
- adding steps right the way round the Camp Kitchen to allow social distance.
Can we bring dogs? Absolutely, if you’re camping on one of our grass pitches. As a working farm and stud, there are many other animals around including lambs, foals and free range chickens who like to wander about – so long as you’re confident your dog will be well-behaved around these and other campers, dogs are welcome but please keep them on a lead at all times while on the campsite and clear up after them immediately. Dogs are the owner’s responsibility and you will be asked to leave if they cause any problems. Unfortunately we can’t accommodate dogs in our pre-erected tents.
Can we have campfires? Definitely – we sell firewood from the Camp Kitchen (sustainably coppiced ash straight from the Westerlands Estate hillside at £6 a bag). We can’t have fires on the ground, but you can bring your own firepit, or hire them from us for between £8-£10 for your whole stay. No need to book these in advance, we have plenty. Please don’t collect wood locally as deadwood is really important for habitats. Please also be conscious that the surrounding woods and heathland are like a tinderbox if they meet a spark – be responsible – introduce no sparks (or cigarettes)!
Can we have barbecues? Of course – just make sure they’re raised off the ground – we have a few bricks around you can borrow if you need to. We also have a selection of grills you can borrow to put over your firepit for cooking on – you can’t book them in advance but we usually have enough. (Btw if you have any old oven/barbecue grills you’re thinking of chucking, we’d be delighted to take them off your hands and give them a new home).
Do you allow cars on the field? No*. To keep the paddock safe and quiet for everyone and the ground as intact as possible, we ask that you park up and transport your stuff on the rather stylish pallets-on-wheels provided. The car park is right next to the paddock so it’s not far (never further than 100m) and it means kids can run around freely, car doors aren’t slamming right by you the whole time and you don’t have that slight fear when cars come back in the dark that they might drive into your tent…
* Unless you have a mobility problem, in which case you can bring your car on to the field slowly, looking out for small children, frisbees and chickens at all times, and keep it parked by your tent. Please arrange this with us beforehand so we can save you a space close to the paddock entrance and the toilets/showers.
Can we bring a caravan, campervan or motor home? We have designated spaces for a few campervans – no caravans, unfortunately. Please contact us if you would like to make a booking for a campervan so we can manage numbers – the prices are the same as they would be for a grass tent pitch.
Can we play music? Everyone loves a campfire sing-song and a strum on the old guitar, but I’m afraid no-one truthfully enjoys your bongo drums and we ask you not to play any electronic stuff at all – car radios and even phones can sound very irritating from just a few yards away. Sound travels a long distance in this area and to respect our neighbours, we ask for quiet talking voices only round the campfire after 10.30pm.
Do you have a fridge for campers? No – everyone just leaves their stuff in it when they go and then it goes off and smells gross. We do have a freezer for freezer blocks though – we strongly advise that you mark yours in some way so they’re identifiable as they tend to all look the same…
Can we book a group? Usually, we would say yes, absolutely, that’s what camping is all about! In this new corona era, we must add that this is with the proviso you adhere to the government guidelines in place at the time; we will do everything we can to assist you in this. If you’re all booking individually, give your group a name for everyone to add to their booking notes so we know you all want to pitch together. There are no designated pitches, so it’s not like seats at the cinema – you can book at different times (depending on availability) and still pitch together – also people bringing their own tents can camp alongside pre-pitched tents.
If some of our group want pre-pitched tents and others bring their own, can we still all camp together? Yes! At a safe social distance!
Do you have any non-camping options? Yes! There are two lovely flats on the Estate as well as a shepherd’s hut and yurt that you can rent through AirB&B so that non-campers can still be part of the fun. Email Sarah at firstname.lastname@example.org for the flats and email@example.com for the shepherds hut & yurt to find out more.
What restrictions are there on our tent size? Although we don’t have demarcated pitches, our allowance is 8x5m a pitch which is pretty massive – not many people know their tent sizes off the top of their head but rest assured most tents aren’t bigger than that. You can fit up to six people on a pitch but please note that the price only includes parking for one car.
What if we need to bring more than one car?
The farmer provides overflow parking a very short walk from the campsite for £5 a night, or there’s an affordable car park in nearby Petworth (10 mins’ drive) – around £1.20 a day.
I’ve heard you cook delicious and reasonably priced food over fire which I can sit and eat al fresco with my friends in gorgeous surroundings while watching the sun set? Why, yes! Read what The Guardian, The Times, BBC Good Food and Countless Other Campers have to say about our food, and go to our food page here. We will still be cooking for summer 2020 once we open, following The Nationwide Catering Association’s Covid19 Compliance and Guidelines and have all sorts of exciting plans afoot which we will announce through our newsletter and on social media.
I’ve also heard that, if I’m one person booking for a group of 6 or more, I get a FREE supper AND breakfast in recognition of my heroic efforts in trying to pin down dates that everyone can make? That’s true! You’ll get an email about the food we’re cooking a week or so before your stay, and can choose what you’d like to go for then.
Do you accept stag and hen groups? If you’re planning a relaxing weekend camping, chatting, walking with a few friends, then absolutely. Everyone is welcome, so long as they understand that this is a peaceful, family campsite with children, and not suitable for loud or drunken behaviour and parties. Just to reiterate, we ask for quiet after 10.30pm and if you behave in a way that may disturb other campers, you will be asked to leave immediately.
Can we book the whole site? You can, so long as there are no prior bookings. However, to manage expectations, we can’t have amplified music and we tend to be fully booked at weekends and school holidays. We also can expect a certain proportion of campers to be eating with us, so your booking would need to cover the cost of a full campsite and our food takings (part of this could of course be covered by your group eating with us). We could open exclusively for you mid-week during term-time, when the costs would be much more reasonable. Let’s discuss!
When do we need to arrive by? Any time after 2pm is fine.
Do we need to check in? Yes! Someone from each pitch (not just the person who made the group booking) needs to check in before you put your tent up, by coming over to the Camp Kitchen.* This is for fire safety reasons and Track and Trace obligations amongst other things. We will need to know your car reg and explain a few things.
*which is – inconveniently we know – at the far end of the field. Don’t ask why. OK, it’s because of planning permission. Y’see, according to paragraph 115 of the National Planning Policy Framework of 2012, not to mention Strategic Policies SD4 and SD5 of the SDNP’s Pre-submission Local Plan: ‘Landscape Character’— hey! Hey guys! Wait – where you going?
What time do we have to check out? We know packing up can take ages, so if you’re on a grass pitch, you don’t need to be off the paddock until 1pm. Check-out for pre-erected tents is 11am, to give us time to make things nice for the next campers.
How close is the pub? There are five nearby – Graffham is a pub-rich area! The Foresters (Graffham) and The Cricketers (Duncton) are an easy walk away across footpaths and fields and probably the best with kids – The Badgers (Heath End), The White Horse (Graffham) and The Three Moles (Selham) are a little further but also lovely walks, or a five-minute drive. They’re all splendid pubs in different ways, with beer gardens, log fires and great food and we hope they can open soon!
Is there a shop nearby? Yes two – Jeeva and Vasu run the friendly Graffham Village Shop, which is a half-hour walk/three-minute drive away and well-equipped with everything you could need for your stay. It also runs a small cafe with teas, coffees, delicious cakes and home-made samosas. http://www.graffhamvillageshop.co.uk/. Heath End Shop is a few minutes’ drive away on the A285 towards Petworth, selling locally-sourced fruit, vegetables and other produce. Petworth is a ten minute drive and has a Co-op, and there are supermarkets in Pulborough and Chichester.
Where is the nearest beach? There are lovely stony beaches at Bosham, Pagham and Climping; and sandy beaches at East and West Wittering and East and West Littlehampton; all around 35 mins’ drive from the campsite.
Where is the nearest beautiful walk? There are so many! This spot is ideal for amblers and ramblers – you come straight off the paddock and on to the footpath. We can give you directions for shorter walks with children and ordnance survey maps are available in the village shop. (Please note it is important to stick to the public footpaths – there are plenty – and respect the private property around them.)
How do I recharge my phone or battery pack? Everyone is welcome to charge their phones, laptops and batteries for free at the camp kitchen, though we can’t accept responsibility for watching them.
How do I find you? From London, follow the A3 (Junction 10) on M25 south towards Guildford. About 3 miles past Guildford, at the Milford turning, take the A283 direction Petworth. Having driven through Petworth, take the A285 towards Chichester. Pass the Badgers Pub on your left, then West Sussex Specialist Cars on your right and take the next right turn towards Graffham. You’ll pass Ridlington Farm on your left. The driveway for Westerlands Stud is a further half mile on the left, just after a bend. Our neighbours live at Westerlands Lodge at the start of this driveway and it is VERY IMPORTANT that you slow right down before turning into their drive! Go slowly up the main drive and you’ll see the sign for Woodfire Camping! Click on the ‘Getting here’ tab at the bottom of this page for a link to GoogleMaps.
Where is the train station? Trains go direct from London Victoria to Pulborough, which is a 15 minutes drive away, or from Waterloo to Haslemere, which is a 20 minute drive away. The train journeys take between an hour to 1 hr, 15mins. Both Pulborough and Haslemere have several taxi firms. South Downs Taxis in Pulborough know where we are: 01798 874111
What do we do with our rubbish? We try to make it easy for you to recycle and compost as much as possible onsite, with clearly-labelled bins. We compost at the Camp Kitchen too and also have a bin for the chickens at nearby Barn Cottage who appreciate your food scraps! We’d really appreciate it if you didn’t leave us with broken larger items such as punctured airbeds, chairs and even tents – we’re not the tip and it just means we have to make a trip there instead of you.
In light of COVID-19 we have recently changed our usual booking policy and are subscribing to Cool Camping’s ‘Coronavirus Booking Guarantee’ which we hope provides increased flexibility and reassurance to our guests. This means:
- A low deposit of just 20% to secure your booking
- Balance not due until 10 days before your holiday, in case of late changes to Coronavirus guidance
- Complete flexibility to move bookings for up to 18 months in the event of Coronavirus restrictions: in the event of cancellation due to Coronavirus restrictions or for self-isolation, the customer has the flexibility to move the booking to alternative available dates within 18 months of the start date of their holiday (the ‘flexible rebooking policy’) with no additional charges. If the customer chooses a date where the same accommodation is only available at a higher price,the additional prevailing rate for the stay will be due. The flexible rebooking policy is only available for cancellations related to genuine Coronavirus restrictions. Flexible rebooking is not available for cancellations related to weather or other reasons.
- Due to the low deposit and late balance payment, no refunds can be offered on either the deposit or the balance. If the customer fails to pay the balance by 10 days prior to the holiday start date, the deposit may be deemed to be forfeited by the campsite and the booking cancelled. In such an event the flexible rebooking policy will no longer apply.
- Insurance: we recommend additional cancellation insurance to cover in the event of cancellations other than Coronavirus restrictions.
To be legal about it, Woodfire Camping is used by all persons at their own risk. Camping at Woodfire entitles you to access the camping field and the farm drive from the public road to the campsite itself, the woods either side of the driveway are not owned by us, and exploring them may lead to our campsite license being revoked. The field leads directly on to a public footpath which takes you across plenty of stunning fields and through gorgeous woodland but we must ask you to respect the private property of our neighbours. The Westerlands Estate is a working farm and stud and parents must ensure children are properly supervised at all times.
Whilst we make every effort to ensure a safe campsite we cannot accept responsibility for your possessions or personal injuries sustained whilst on the property or having campfires, but we firmly believe that spending time in this rural environment with its inherent ‘risks’ teaches children – and everyone! – valuable lessons about life, which let’s face it, is not a zero-risk venture!
Standard GDPR notice: We collect your personal details, name, address, email, telephone number and credit card details when you place a booking, these details are used for the purposes of managing your booking and receiving your payment. Should you wish for your personal details to be removed from our booking database after your stay with us, or after cancelling your booking, you may instruct us to remove it by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, please include your booking reference with this request.
If you opt in to our mailing list whilst placing your booking, we will add your name, address and email details to our marketing database and use these details in order to communicate with you in the future. We will not share this information with anyone else. All of our marketing emails will include the ability to have your data removed from our marketing database.