Picturesque farms around Bradford prepare for 'staycation' boom, with wild camping, 'glamping', and yoga on the cards

With lockdown restrictions lifting, a number of the Bradford District’s most picturesque sites are preparing for a possible boom in camping holidays and “staycations.”

Texel cross sheep on Andrew Hardy's land at Tarn View Farm on the hills above Keighley.
Texel cross sheep on Andrew Hardy's land at Tarn View Farm on the hills above Keighley.

Although the country is emerging from the Covid pandemic, with businesses starting to re-open and travel restrictions easing, question marks over international travel have led to predictions that many people will remain in the UK for their summer holidays.

After the easing of lockdown restrictions were announced earlier this year the number of Google searches for “staycations” rose by 89 per cent.

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And a number of local sites hope to make the most of this renewed interest in exploring what the Bradford District has to offer.

A planning application for a seasonal camping site in the Laycock area of Keighley has recently been submitted to Bradford Council.

The proposals, for Tarn View Farm, Tarn Lane, seek permission to allow a field to be used as a camping and caravan site for up to 34 pitches, and points to the increasing popularity of “staycations.”

Submitted by Mr and Mrs Hardy, the application would allow the site to be used by holidaymakers between mid March and mid September.

They would be able to pitch on the site in caravans, motorhomes or with tents or glamping (glamorous camping) pods.

Around 0.69 hectares of the farm site would be used for the new holiday site, and the application highlights its proximity to local attractions such as the Yorkshire Dales, East Riddlesden Hall and Haworth.

The application adds: “The pitches might each be occupied by touring caravans, small to medium-sized motorhomes, ‘glamping’ pods or tents.

“The proposal will cater to increasing demand for ‘staycation’ and low-impact holidaymakers, who prefer walking and touring, and will also diversify the host farm business.

“The farm is located on the Millennium Way, which connects with the Pennine Way at Stanbury, and would afford an opportunity for long-distance walkers to pitch or ‘glamp’.”

A decision on the application is expected in June.

The application comes as another plan to create a new camping site in the District was approved by planning officers.

An application to create a a ‘low-density’ campsite at Branshaw Plantation, in Slaymaker Lane, Oakworth were approved this week.

Submitted by Duncan and Emma Davids, the Realisation of the Woodsworth Exploring project will involve low-impact wild camping, yoga classes and educational workshops in the woodland.

A number of other applications for holiday accommodation have been submitted to the Council.

One proposal would see a former Wool Combers shop at Grade II listed Hardwick House Farm in Addingham repaired and converted into a “unique holiday let.”

And another application would see a derelict farm building at Harehills Lane in Oakworth converted into a holiday cottage, with a shepherds hut and bike storage installed nearby.

All applications point to the benefits to other local businesses that increased tourism would bring.

A recent survey found Bradford District was the 25th most searched for location for a staycation.