Book campsites near Chase Camping
Peake's RetreatsBurton upon Trent, Staffordshire, West Midlands
Glamping in Burton upon Trent
Glamping in Staffordshire
Glamping in West Midlands
There are almost as many bikes as there are tents at Chase Camping, a pop-up campsite spread across some 30 acres of open land behind Four Oaks Farm in Staffordshire. Not that this comes as a surprise. The campsite, open just a handful of weekends a year, is a mere hundred metres from Birches Valley Forest, home to the Midland’s first dedicated mountain bike trail and attracting hundreds of riders all year round. In the heart of the Cannock Chase Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the campsite is also a hive for the worlds’ less hardy cyclists, with family bikes and tiny tots’ trikes peppering the grassy meadow, too. There’s something for everyone here, whether you bring a bike or not.
The campsite itself is a wonderfully laid-back affair. There’s room for almost 100 tent pitches, though the reality is the place is never totally full, so campers are left with endless space instead. Pets are welcome, campfires are permitted (with firepits available to rent and logs for sale) and a live-and-let-live atmosphere pervades, while those without their own camping clobber can hire it all instead, with fully furnished bell tents available to book.
Just across the road, the Birches Valley Forest Visitor Centre is a handy starting place for getting your bearings. As well as the mountain bike trails, the forest is home to a GoApe activity centre with treetop walks and ziplines, as well as a Gruffalo nature trail for children. It also houses a decent little café and fistfuls of brochures about other good things to do in the local area. Take a browse and plan your stay – perhaps you’ll follow local footpaths to the local pub (a warm old establishment with cask ales, a vast gin list and a Little Trekkers menu) or take a tour of the National Trust’s nearest and grandest Staffordshire property Shugborough Hall. Whatever you choose, there’s more than enough to do to fill a weekend and then some. And, since Chase Camping isn’t open during the week, to do it all you’ll just have to come back more than once!
Suitable ForGlampers, campers, tents of all sizes, dogs, groups – yes. Campervans and caravans – no.
NearbyThe campsite is a mere 100m from Birches Valley Visitor Centre (03000 674340), the main starting point for an exhilarating day out in Cannock Chase Forest – cared for by Forestry Commission England. Around the visitor centre, activities include, Go Ape (08450 949253; including Treetop Adventure and Forest Segway activities), Cannock Chase mountain bike trails (some of the most celebrated in the country), a Gruffalo spotters trail for children and 'Forest Live' concerts in the outdoors (see their online calendar for details). Further afield, the campsite is also very close (6 miles) to the National Trust's Shugborough Hall (01889 880160). Unlike many of the trust's properties, almost every aspect of the estate remains fully intact and open to the public. The complete estate, has all major buildings including the mansion house, servants' quarters, working farm and walled garden, plus a museum and an excellent model farm. On another note, the Staffordshire IronMan triathlon in June also goes directly past the campsite gate, making it a popular base for spectators as well as participants.
Food & DrinkBirches Valley Café (01889 574475) across the road at the Birches Valley Visitor Centre serves light lunch options, snacks, drinks and ice creams. It's an easy 10-minute walk to The Horns Inn (01889 586000) in Slitting Mill, which boasts a warm, cosy atmosphere in spring time – open fires, hearty food, real ales and endless gin options – and outdoor space in summer time. Dogs are welcome too. By car, drive the short distance to The Wolsey Arms (01889 883179) in Wolsey Bridge – it also makes for a very pleasant longer walk.
Opening Times6 weekends only, between late March – end of August. See calendar for details.
The best train station is in Rugeley – Rugeley Trent Valley Railway Station (0845 748 4950) 3½ miles from the campsite – where there is also a bus and coach station. There is actually a slightly closer train in Rugeley Town Station, though the line is much quieter and trains are less frequent.
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