Camping and caravan: Britons could be slapped with fines of up to £2,500 this summer

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Caravan parks and campsites across the UK have reported an uptick in booking this year, with international holidays out of reach for many due to international travel restrictions. What’s more, with coastal cottages and countryside shepherds huts upping costs in line with demand, many Britons may be considering a traditional camping or caravan stay.

For those who are heading out on their first proper camping trip, though, experts from UK private camper rental service PaulCamper have warned of some strict national rules which should not be forgotten.

In fact, campers who are caught making one basic faux pas – even if unintentional – could face whopping fines of up to £2,500.

These come under the guise of “Leave No Trace”, seven camping principals which work to minimise the impact of camping on the natural environment.

“Just as in the streets, when camping the act of littering is illegal,” explained a spokesperson from PaulCamper.

“Campers found to have dropped litter can be fined or face prosecution in court.

“Authorised officers have the power to issue a fixed penalty charge of up to £80 for a litter offence, as an alternative to prosecution.

“If the offender is prosecuted and convicted in court, the fine could rise to £2,500.”

While it might be obvious to bag up your litter, there are other forms of waste which can also see Britons forking out for a fine.

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“A huge benefit of staycations is that you can bring your four-legged friend along. However, there are some things to consider,” continued the expert.

“If you have decided to bring your dog along for the trip, their poo should be picked up and disposed of properly in a waste bin.

“Anyone who fails to clear up after their dog can be issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice of up to £100.

“If the case goes to court this could cost the owner or person in charge of the animal up to £1,000.”

Last summer, the National Trust reported “unprecedented” amounts of abandoned litter and camping equipment.

In a bid to ensure the same does not happen again, the charity has appealed to Britons.

Rob Rhodes, the National Trust’s head of rangers said: “Flycamping and the resultant litter left behind can cause serious issues for wildlife.”

However, it isn’t just dog waste which can leave a negative impact on the environment.

“If you are taking an au naturel approach and intend to camp without facilities, you will also need to dispose of your own waste in a way that respects the land,” said the PaulCamper expert.

“Typically this means digging a hole and burying faeces at least 30 metres away from bodies of water.”

Emily Bryce, operations manger at Glencoe national Nature Reserve in the Scottish Highlands says she often faces used wipes and toilet paper across popular camping spots.

“We really need people to come prepared to take away their waste, just like if you’ve got a dog,” she told iNews.

“You’ve got to have a plan, and that plan cannot be ‘leave it’.”

Before heading off on a camping or caravan holiday, Britons should be sure they have ways of disposing of everything they bring with them, in order to leave the land as they found it.

The PaulCamper expert concluded: “It is vital that those camping do their best to preserve the land they are on and respect, and protect, the wildlife that live there.”

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