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Terminal 5 chaos a fantastic free advert for caravanning – MP

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THE ongoing chaos at Heathrow’s new Terminal is a fantastic advert for caravanning, according to a senior Labour MP.

Barnsley MP Eric Illsley said the severe baggage problems experienced by passengers at the new Terminal 5 could give holidaying in the UK a real boost.

British Airways has been forced to send thousands of suitcases by lorry to Milan because its staff at Heathrow are unable to cope with the backlog of at least 20,000 bags that missed flights.

Speaking at the Caravan Club’s Certificated Location of the Year Awards 2007 at Westminster, Mr Illsley said: “We’ve been ably assisted in our campaign to promote domestic tourism by that great advert for caravanning down the road at Hounslow. Heathrow Terminal 5 has got to be the best free advert for caravanning and domestic tourism in recent years.”

The club’s 2,500 Certificated Locations are small, privately-owned five-pitch sites – often in idyllic rural locations on farms, country houses and even pubs.

Minister for Culture, Creative Industries and Tourism Margaret Hodge MBE presented the awards at a reception at the Palace of Westminster hosted by Mr Illsley and his parliamentary colleagues David Amess and Lembit Opik.

Results:

1st: Ian and Janet Kelly, Birch Hill CL, Ellesmere, Shropshire
2nd: Keith and Alison Rogers, Keal Lodge CL, Deeping St James, Lincolnshire
3rd: John and Iris Lamb, Leadketty CL, Perth & Kinross

As well as the three national winners, the awards recognised six regional winners and a further five winners of specialist categories.


The Kelly family
After presenting the awards, Mrs Hodge underlined the importance of domestic tourism in the UK and caravanning in particular: “I think caravanning is sitting in a really good place,” said Mrs Hodge.

“Sustainability is moving up the agenda and there is a real opportunity to grow this sector because touring caravanning is probably one of the most sustainable ways for people to spend their holiday," she added.

Club chairman Grenville Chamberlain explained that the introduction of online voting had prompted a three-fold increase in members voting for their favourite sites from the club’s 2,500-strong network of CLs.

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