Reviewed by Debbie Tasker
Last Saturday we visited Moorlands Caravan Park in Saddleworth, Oldham to try out one of their new camping pods. Myself, partner and 4 stepdaughters ranging in age from 9-15 were really looking forward to it having looked on their website page and learnt all about this new camping experience.
We live in Swinton, Manchester and the journey took us around 50 minutes. It was easy to find and the campsite itself has a large clear sign situated on the main road. Moorlands is situated in Denshaw, a quiet little village in the Saddleworth area. As you are driving up into the moors the scenery is spectacular and it is hard to believe that after such a short drive you can arrive in such a beautiful part of the country.
We were met at reception by Pete, he was very friendly and helpful and gave me a map of the site, a fob for the barrier and keys for the pod. He also advised me where the toilets and water taps were. I got back in the car and after a short drive higher into the camp site we saw our pod. There is a small car park right next to the field and at the moment just two pods. We were to stay in the larger of the two.
The pod itself consists of a large inside area. We didn’t struggle for space at all. There are two wall lights and a radiator and a felt like flooring which is a little rough resulting in us all coming away with red knees (even through are jeans!). There is a small undercover decking area and a picnic table and bench set – we moved this onto the grass at the front as it was very windy and needed to do our cooking undercover. The patio doors open out onto the most spectacular views and you really do need to see them to appreciate how amazing they are. We unpacked and went for a stroll into the village.
As we walked through the camp site we passed caravans, tents, camper vans and static homes. The grounds are well kept and everywhere was clean and neat. The only negative is a pond with a sign saying ‘deep water’ yet there is no fence or wall around it to stop people, pets and mainly children exploring just how deep it is. A bit dangerous.
The walk down the hill is lovely we spotted cows, sheep and horses amongst other things. Very near the bottom on the left is a church with a playground next to it. A welcome spot for the girls. After stopping here we went across to the pub (the name escapes me) to get a drink and watch a bit of football. The children were not allowed in as they don’t allow under 18’s after 6pm and it was getting on for that time. So avoid this pub if you have family in tow and it is early evening. If you come out of Moorlands and go up the hill instead there is another public house but I don’t know their views on children entering as we didn’t go.
We headed back to the camp site and settled down to cook our evening meal. As darkness fell the views changed again and the car lights and street lighting from across the reservoir made for a perfect view whilst relaxing. At this time everywhere was very peaceful and quiet and we enjoyed a family evening of playing cards, chatting and that old favourite connect 4.
As bedtime approached we went to wash the dishes and were pleasantly surprised to find a washing facility especially for this. We then headed for the toilets and showers. Again clean, bright and smelt fresh. There are two shower cubicles and three toilets. We found the showers to be powerful and hot and there is a little seat in there too. Note there is no soap dispenser/tablet at the sinks so be sure to take some or it means a return journey to wash your hands after using toilet.
On returning to our pod we decided who was sleeping where and arranged beds. The pod advertises that it sleeps 5, 2 adults and 3 children but we were not squashed up at all with 6 of us and were very comfortable. We shut the doors and pulled down the blind over them (yes there is a blind as well, how glamorous).
Now for the unfortunate bit, until this point all was fine. In the pod next to us were 2 men who had set up enormous telescopes just outside our pod, they also had friends camping in tents behind us. We turned our lights out at 10.40 and then the fun began. The noise was ridiculous with them chatting and laughing all night. At one point there was a huge uproar, I gather they must have spotted something through their telescopes. I looked at my phone it was 3am!! They disturbed us all night and kept waking everybody up with their bad mannered behaviour. As it grew light I heard a big bang and a “dragging” sound I didn’t have a clue what it was but I guessed it was something to do with them. When we got up at 8.30 the telescopes had gone so I am assuming not only did they keep us awake all night using them they then decided to pack away after. So very, very rude.
We had breakfast and the children played some more in the beautiful surroundings and then we packed up and headed home. I called in at reception to try and speak to somebody about the men and noise but nobody was there. I had a quick look around but couldn’t find any one so decided to ring when I got home.
It would have been an excellent experience of our first time Glamping if not for the other campers. The Moorlands Caravan Park is great and I cannot fault it. Just a shame the same can’t be said for the other guests.
The rules clearly state that after 10.30pm noise is to be kept to a minimum. This didn’t happen (although this is not the fault of the park itself, just selfish neighbours) and unfortunately on this occasion this is the reason I had to score them low.
For more information or to book a camping pod visit www.moorlandscp.co.uk.
The Moorlands Caravan Park, Ripponden Road, Denshaw, Saddleworth, Oldham OL3 5UN
01457 874348 | www.moorlandscp.co.uk