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Old 24 October 2009, 13:03   #1
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Haggerston Castle... nuke it!

Just spent two nights at Haggerston Castle near Berwick upon Tweed. Honestly, if you're contemplating a 'cheap get-away' then save yourself the trouble.

It's a Haven caravan resort, and in my opinion should be erased from the landscape. The place is dirty, expensive, and even their name-sake castle lacks investment.

My wife booked a mid-term-break for 4 nights through a Daily Mail offer. That in itself should have been enough to put me off, but as she'd gone to the bother of researching it, I went along with it. We have two young daughters - so it was more for them than us.

The caravan was a 10x20' static. Apparently it was Deluxe, but Haven have names for everything from Prestige to Platinum. It's all b*llicks. The place was dirty, duvets and pillows were like something from the Borrowers, and our gas ran out within 24 hours of arriving. The family fun pass really only give you access to the pool, which is relatively small, and given the numbers of people - you're limited to 45 minutes and have to share 15 changing cubicles with around 100 people.

There's no such thing as a free lunch. You pay from everything. The pony trekking - is a pit-pony which treks around the caravan park. There are more games machines than a Vegas nightclub, and the bar looks like a set from Shameless.

Needless to say we left after 2 nights, and enjoyed the rest of our holiday in Newcastle and York as far away from Haggerston Castle as we could get.
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Old 25 October 2009, 11:17   #2
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Heard bad reports about that place off other people too.
Newcastle and York ar nice.
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Old 25 October 2009, 11:52   #3
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I went somewhere near there for 5 days with some friends 2 summers ago. Worst holiday of my life. Locals treated us like we had just stepped off the moon, had to drive miles to find anything interesting, weather was awful, and its miles away. Thoroughly depressing. Was made worse by the fact that we all fell out with each other on the last night over a drunken argument about something (can't even remember what now)
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Old 25 October 2009, 12:18   #4
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Tim - in the area's defence:
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had to drive miles to find anything interesting,
your idea of "interesting" may not be the same as everyone else's, but you can usually (via www) get a fairly good idea before you go somewhere if its "a tourist centre" or not.
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weather was awful,
i've had awful weather in most parts of the UK (and good weather in many parts too). However given its location probably not a surprise that the weather wasn't fantastic.
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and its miles away.
this all depends on where you start! but the distance from home was presumably not a surprise.

Perhaps if this was the "attitude" then its not surprising that the locals thought you'd arrived from the moon
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Old 25 October 2009, 12:32   #5
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I've been to Applecross & Scourie & Lerwick in Scotland and I have to say that without exception, there was feck all "to do" or to go and "see".

I was in hog heaven and I only fell out with myself occasionally, admittedly when there was drink taken .
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Old 25 October 2009, 13:12   #6
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I will add that we went to Edinburgh for the day (took hours to get there) and it was really good. The girls went shopping while we looked round the Royal Yacht Britannia. I'd consider going back up there for the weekend, I think its only about 3 hours on the train from London or a short flight from Southampton. I've got a friend who used to be at St Andrews uni - apparently there was a very popular "all you can drink for a tenner" bar in Edinbro! Must check it out some time
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Old 25 October 2009, 14:04   #7
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I will add that we went to Edinburgh for the day (took hours to get there) and it was really good. The girls went shopping while we looked round the Royal Yacht Britannia. I'd consider going back up there for the weekend, I think its only about 3 hours on the train from London or a short flight from Southampton. I've got a friend who used to be at St Andrews uni - apparently there was a very popular "all you can drink for a tenner" bar in Edinbro! Must check it out some time
Ahh, so you were looking for some take me by the hand and show me that this is a tourist attraction type stuff (like Britania) of course there were some good coastal walks, local pubs, and I think even a rib ride opperator or two much closer than Edinburgh.

Don't think you can do London to Edinburgh, in 3 hours. But you can fly from S/Hampton relatively cheaply.
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Old 25 October 2009, 14:55   #8
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Takes 2.5hrs to get from Darlington to Edinburgh.
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Old 25 October 2009, 15:40   #9
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We searched long and hard for local stuff. We took a rib up there but I wasn't too inspired by the coastline. Possibly the most fun part was offroading (dont tell the locals) around this Loch and getting the car stuck.
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Old 25 October 2009, 15:41   #10
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Perran Sands is a massive Haven site over on the north coast at Perranporth. We did a load of work there one winter, during peak weeks it'll cater for 8000 campers.
Apparently the GP surgery which covers the site, dispenses more 'morning after' pills than any other in the UK during the season.
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