Lowdham Leisureworld Nottingham
Lowdhams also has a unique Style range of dealer specials: Freestyle from Swift; Sportstyle from Sprite and Sunstyle from Elddis.
Look out for selected used caravans nominated for the Director’s Cut, where you can make big savings and still benefit from the Ultimate 2-year Warranty, that is backed up by a countrywide warranty network.
Lowdhams also has a number of pitches available on-site, where customers can stay in their caravans overnight, to ensure that everything is to their satisfaction before leaving the premises.
Hymer Nova 570 - £11,490
This is a very heavy caravan for a two-berth, but in every other aspect, it has a definite edge over most of the potential rivals.
Yes, it is actually described as a three berth, but with a superb rear, off-side dinette, a couple could leave the front bed (or beds) made up occasionally, if planning a series of short stops and saving themselves from the nightly chore.
All internal fittings are as solid as a rock and with it, comes a feeling of permanence and security.
The powder blue and straw’ buttoned upholstery has a high quality, domestic feel, that is both relaxing and hard wearing.
The only thing lacking is mains lighting, although there are plenty of power points where you can plug in your own table lamps - perhaps preferable anyway, as caravan mains lighting can often be quite harsh.
Unlike in many continental caravans, Hymer’s kitchen leaves you wanting for nothing.
In the centre in a full sized oven topped with a four-burner hob and to the right of it is a slightly raised 90-litre fridge. Its work surface top can also be the TV point, although the wide front window ledge is another possibility.
To the left of the cooker, a large, stainless steel sink sits on the top of a substantial storage unit, containing a large cutlery drawer, also a cupboard with a bin attached to one of the doors.
The dinette opposite has a wide table and seats that could accommodate four adults in reasonable comfort. It is intended to provide an extra berth is needed, but there is almost certainly room for two young children if necessary.
A radiant heater next to the door is ideally placed for killing off any unwanted draughts. Next to the door is a narrow, open wardrobe that is perfectly placed for boots and raincoats.
The washroom will help to clinch the sale and many people will wish that their bathroom at home was so well equipped and stylish. Fittings are all of the highest quality, with the wash basin being mounted on a particularly well crafted array of shelves and cabinets.
There are a few untidy defects in the bodywork, but it is all cosmetic and nothing that can’t be put right. A long lasting caravan for a couple who want the best.
Bailey Pageant Champagne Series 7 - £11,990
If you had been transported straight into this Bailey’s interior, you might have struggle d to work out exactly what kind of caravan you were standing in.
There are continental influences, with perhaps a touch of Adria or Dethleffs, but something else unusual that is quite difficult to define.
The beige leaf pattern of the seating is trimmed with houndstooth borders and although I can’t quite make my mind up about the tangerine panels on the cushions, something was definitely needed to rescue it from blandness.
I also noticed that the natural light inside seemed to be a little subdued, but this might have been due to a subtle tint to the windows.
The enormous high-level lockers open with a concealed plastic handle, tucked under the lip of the door.
The corners are covered by plastic in-fill panels that have lights mounted flush with the front and spotlights underneath. There seems to be s dearth of lighting elsewhere, but LED light strings are concealed on the underside of the lockers.
The floor is covered by close fitting mats, which hug the floor line almost as closely as a fitted carpet.
A central, off-side storage unit between the lounge and dinette contains slide out racks and provides the TV position on top, although the parallel lounge will provide is poor for for TV watching, especially with the narrow viewing angle of most FSTs.
The central kitchen is a substantial unit, long enough to provide ample work space and has a full oven and a four burner hob.
The sink saves space by being mounted sideways on the worktop – simple but effective. You even get a microwave, albeit a very small one.
The side dinette that also provides the bunks looks rather plain and empty. Admittedly, you don’t actually need many extra fittings in this area - perhaps it was simply that the clip on table wasn’t in place.
The end washroom contains a shower that should be large enough for anyone. You enter an area enclosed by a shower curtain, then progress into a larger cubicle that has a perspex shower screen.
I can only think that it is designed to be used by two people at the same time, with an area for each person to take it in turn with back scrubbing duties – not a procedure traditionally associated with Bailey owners, I would have thought.
The washbasin is surrounded by handsome wood panels, next to a terrific wardrobe with plenty of shelf storage. The moulded plastic washbasin looks a bit uninspired, but with its wide brim, is almost certainly more practical in use that some of the more arty creations.
This Champagne was quite a radical step for Bailey, but could those seat cover start to look a bit dreary in a year or two? I would have liked to have seen one in an alternative upholstery design for comparison.
A very good effort overall, delivering features to match many of the continental caravans, but keeping the weight to within manageable levels.
Nottingham NG14 7ES
Tel: 0115 966 3838
- This profile was first published in Caravan Motorhome & Camping Mart's Summer Special issue.