The RCC is now the largest retro, classic, vintage, period and historic caravan
club in Europe. Our aim is to promote the use and preservation of classic caravans
throughout the UK. Anyone who has an interest in classic caravans is more than
welcome to join. Perhaps you own one already and would like to meet like-minded people
and explore the country with your pride and joy, or perhaps you don't have one yet
but would like to join the club to get a feel for classic caravanning.
1) What is the Retro Caravan Club?
The Retro Caravan Club is a modern club for vintage leisure vehicles. We are re-inventing the traditional owners club, with a modern take on traditional club values. We primarily encourage the restoration and use of vintage caravans, motor caravans and trailer tents. We host rallies all over the UK (and a couple on the Continent) for like minded members to meet up and enjoy a weekend sharing their love for all things vintage. Expect a welcoming atmosphere with a very varied selection of members. We also have a very active social media presence, always looking to embrace new technology and move with the times to improve the membership experience.
2) Who Founded the Retro Caravan Club?
The Retro Caravan Club was founded by Christopher Beresford and Cameron Burns. They were seasoned classic caravan enthusiasts, looking to explore more of the UK throughout the whole year. They were expecting to have around 40 paid members, just enough to get a printed magazine. But seemingly overnight, hundreds of other people came to join in, seeing how much fun we were having at rallies and enjoying our caravans. We can now happily report to have the largest membership count out of all the Clubs outside of the U.S.A dedicated to vintage caravans. In May 2018 we processed our 1000th paid member and to date have processed over 1300.
3) What vehicles does the Retro Caravan Club accept?
The Retro Caravan Club accepts caravans, motorhomes, camper vans and trailer tents. We use the general term "Caravan", because traditionally, all leisure vehicles were defined as caravans: trailer caravans, motor caravans and folding caravans. More recently, Americanisms such as "Motorhome" and "Camper" have become accepted norms. We use the traditional umbrella term "Caravan" for simplicity.
4) What do you define as "retro", "vintage" or "classic"?
We define this as a caravan produced before 31st December 1982 and a motorhome/camper produced before 31st December 1985. We allow up to 1990 to attend our social rallies.
5) Why have you decided on these cut off dates?
There was a defining "end of an era" for caravans in 1982. The recession of 1980 saw most of the long established makers go into receivership, with most of them closing their factory doors for good by 1982. In addition to this, the fitting of glass windows to new mass-produced caravans produced after 1st January 1983 became outlawed in the UK. Finally, 1983 saw German company Al-Ko take over long established British chassis makers, B&B. From 1983, the vast majority of British produced caravans used the
new lightweight Al-Ko chassis, which is still used widely on most new caravans today. With these three factors
considered, we feel that 1982 is a defining cut off for classic caravans. As for motorhomes/camper vans, the Ford
Transit and Bedford CF had been long standing stalwarts of the Motorhome world since the early 1970s as the
most popular chassis for building a motorhome on. Both the First Generation Transit and Bedford CF
were being phased out by 1985, both being discontinued/replaced by 1986.
6) So are newer vehicles not allowed?
We accept caravans and motorhomes produced up to 1990, but only on our social rallies, which is at the
moment themajority of our meetings. We feel that, despite our cut-off date of 1982 for caravans and 1985 for motorhomes, there are alot of 1980s vehicles that people deem to be "retro", so we feel that they should be included. However, for public display rallies, we reinforce our 1982 and 1985 cut off dates as many display rallies throughout the UK already have an agreed age cut off of 1980, and we have special dispensation to include our own specified cut-off date. We pride ourselves on showing the public a varied selection of vehicles from the 1920s - 1980s.
7) What is the difference between a social rally and display rally?
A social rally is usually held on a campsite with full facilities (toilets, showers, electric hook up etc...). These are laid back weekends where we meet up with our classic vehicles and enjoy a relaxing weekend of socialising and entertainment. Members are encouraged to use the rally as a base for exploring the area by day, and convene in the evenings, often around a campfire, for an evening of socialising. Display rallies are held at events where our vehicles are on show to the public. There's generally few facilities, but usually free access to the show for exhibitors. Caravans and motorhomes are to be set up for display to the public during show hours.
8) I don't have a classic caravan or motorhome - am I allowed to join the Club?
Of course! We welcome anyone with an interest in classic caravans and motorhomes. We have many members who join to look for a suitable caravan, perhaps are too old to go caravanning or have links to the original manufacturers. We publish a 40+ page colour quarterly magazine that's bursting with content, and members love the sense of nostalgia that the magazine brings.
9) What does my £15 membership include?
Membership runs from the date that you join to the same date the following year. So whatever time of the year you join, you get a full 12 months’ membership. We are the only classic caravan/motorhome related Club in the UK to offer date to date membership. You will receive four full colour 48 page magazines each quarter which are bursting with reports and photos from our rallies, technical articles, historical articles, letters from members and related news. You also get access to our exclusive calendar of events throughout the year, which are open to members only. You are also joining an extremely friendly community who are always happy to help and advise with the restoration of your vehicle. Your £15 membership is for your family to use, there are no additional costs for extra members.
10) Where in the country are the rallies held?
All over the country! We have Area Reps all over the UK who work hard to find rally venues suitable for the Club.
All our rally venues are inspected and carefully selected to ensure their quality and high standard. We pride ourselves
on offering variety. Our rally calendar changes completely each year, to keep encouraging members to travel
the country and explore new places.
11) Do I have to tow my classic caravan with a classic car?
No, not at all. But it is encouraged! There will always be someone on hand to help with hitching/unhitching
on site and any running repairs to your classic car. All we ask of those towing with a modern car, is that the cars
are parked in an allocated parking area during show hours on Display Rallies to give our camping area a complete
12) What's the demographic of Club members?
There isn't one! We are an extremely varied bunch of enthusiasts, there is no "average" member. The age of our members varies from 18 years old to 96 years old with a very even spread of ages attending each rally. Our members have varied backgrounds, professions, ethnicities, religions, sexualities... everyone is welcome without prejudice and we guarantee that you are made to feel like part of the family from the moment you arrive on site.
13) And are my children and pets allowed?
Of course! We encourage children to come to rallies as they are the future custodians of our vehicles. It's very important to get them interested at an early age so that the Retro Caravan Club and the wider classic caravan movement have a future. Our social rallies usually feature some organised entertainment for children, and they are encouraged to join in with the adults too. We would never choose a venue for a rally that didn't allow dogs/pets, as many of us bring our companions with us on holiday!
14) Does my caravan/motorhome have to be fully restored to take part?
No, so long as it meets the age criteria, it is welcome. All we ask is that vehicles are clean and tidy. Many members use their caravans during their restoration - taking part is the main thing!
15) Do you only accept caravans/motorhomes in original condition?
So long as it is within the age range of the Club, it is welcome. We have members with all kinds of weird and wonderful vehicles. Variety is the spice of life, as they say! You will see a big variation of restorations and renovations at rallies.
16) Are you a member of ACCEO - Association of Caravan and Camping Exempted Organisation?
Yes, indeed we are a member of ACCEO, meaning we are part of the proffesional organisation, we are also vetted by the UK goverment and approved to be one of the proffesional organisations in the UK. We hold an exemption certificate for England, Wales and Scotland.
17) Are you of the ECCC - European Classic Caravan Clubs
Yes, we are also members of the ECCC - which means we are one of a select few clubs in favour of the Retro, Classic and Vintage caravan and camping movements within Europe and the UK. You can see a list of our friends in the members only area.
18) How do I join?
You can join very easily in less than five minutes online via our simple online form. Once you have filled the form in,
you can click submit and it will forward you onto PayPal to pay for your annual membership. You even have the
option to create an automatic payment so that your membership is automatically renewed each year.