Knowledge is power in all facets of our holiday park provision but especially in the key aspects of play. Getting the play recipe right means the best use of precious revenue and increased customer loyalty for those that include play as part of their offering. Recent research is therefore vital as it arms decision makers with key clues about the opportunities that exist in play solutions. That research, by leading play providers, Proludic, reveals a whopping 89% of parents and carers are more likely to be drawn to a leisure destination with a good quality play space.


The findings show, for the UK population, play is about the child being outdoors, expending energy and expressing themselves. For families and those with closer ties to the child’s development, it is also about spending time together, something which the leisure sector is a big proponent of. It is also viewed as time spent away from digital devices, such as smartphones and tablets. For those with junior aged children, it represents an opportunity for their child to make friends. Due to the impact on overseas travel because of the global pandemic, this year is set to be another recordbreaking year for the UK’s hospitality and leisure sector with both domestic tourist expenditure. “This presents a great opportunity for businesses to take advantage of the increased revenue and grow their market share,” says Anne Parkin, Key Accounts Manager for Proludic, who says holiday destinations are reviewing the play facilities they offer. As providers of creative play, outdoor gyms and sports areas to the leisure sector, leading suppliers, Proludic, carried out their research into the type of play facilities are most desired during their leisure time. “When planning your on-site facilities understanding what families want is vital, whether your business is a holiday destination, pub, restaurant or visitor attraction,” says Anne. “To aid in this, Proludic has undertaken some primary research to discover the key factors involved when selecting a place to visit, and also to understand what will ensure your visitors return.”


The Proludic research evidences the importance of attracting custom, extending dwell time and the financial consequences of that for your business. It identifies the importance of targeting the family market and addressing the diversity of ages. This allows you to plan appropriately for future years to keep pace with the increasingly competitive leisure market. With its extensive range of play equipment for all ages, Proludic offers a varied material palette,” says Anne. “We can also provide bespoke play features to suit your environment to suit space and budget. “We also offer a free design service, which will realise your dreams and work towards ensuring your business stands out in the crowd.” One in three (35%) agreed that they would be happy to travel further to a destination with a good play space. Play also appears to be a good way to build customer relationships and encourage repeat business, with nearly half (46%) stating that they are more likely to return. The research also tells us that half of all leisure customers (48%) would be more inclined to stay longer if a good playground for children was evident. This figure rises to 76% when family customers are taken into account.

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Tasty Breaks

Butlins offers a total of 58 eating and drinking outlets and venues at their three seaside locations.

Tasty Breaks

WITH millions of British holidaymakers heading for holiday parks in the UK this year, one of the major attractions for most visitors was that the cooking would be done for them.

Catering is the vital ingredient of the holiday park business menu. From high-class restaurants to family-friendly pizza cafes, the choice on offer at many locations is vast.

Quality food and good surroundings are key to the restaurant enjoyment factor with staff service and excellent menus par for the course in these competitive times.

In May Jeremy Marks was appointed food and beverage retail manager for Center Parcs’ Woburn Forest, which will open in spring next year.

Jeremy has more than 25 years’ experience and will be responsible for the F&B and Retail offering available to short break guests at the Village.

Jeremy worked for Wagamama for more than eight years, then Giraffe for six years and was instrumental in creating the Giraffe burgers and cocktails brand which was launched in 2012, introducing funky burgers, music and cocktails across the UK.

With a wide range of restaurants, cafes and shops, Center Parcs’ Woburn Forest will offer a variety of cuisines ideal for families on a short break. Jeremy will be responsible for food and drink development, menus, food and drink products, restaurant and café staff, F&B operations - as well as health and safety.

Says Jeremy: “At Woburn Forest, like the other Center Parcs, the cafes will offer a relaxing, cosy space to enjoy a beverage and a light bite with family or friends.

“There will also be a wide variety of restaurants, with delicious food to try including Italian, American, British, Indian and Dutch (by this we mean our much-loved Pancake House) and a modern, fun, exciting environment.

“There will also be a brand new restaurant - The Shearing House. This restaurant will be a relaxed, contemporary restaurant serving classic British cuisine. This restaurant has a very local link as it gets its name from Woburn’s history as an area famous for sheep shearing.”