Tuesday 21 May 2024

Free Campervan and Motorhome Overnight Parking at Frugaldom in Dumfries and Galloway Frugaldom


During the Covid pandemic, our yard got registered and licensed through Dumfries and Galloway Council Planning Department to allow us to offer overnight parking for fully self-contained campervans and motorhomes (up to a maximum length of 7.5m). As time progressed and the pandemic fizzled out, it was suggested that we continue offering park-up space, so we were able to transfer our licence through CAMpRA UK to MotorhomeFun. We became known as an aire, a term used more in France for service points or overnight parking areas. Come and enjoy some fresh air at the Frugaldom aire, where parking is free but we do expect a small contribution towards the upkeep of the yard and driveway because gravel costs a fortune to get it delivered and laid when we have no machinery and few volunteers volunteer to do that job.

In 2021/22 we applied to CAMpRA for some funding to help us afford a waste disposal point but this was refused. (I haven't found out, yet, who benefited from the £13,000+ funds that were raised, perhaps it's on their own website.) For now, we have a very frugal solution, thanks to WC in Fields donating us a black waste tank, which costs over £100 each time we need them back out to empty it. They also provided us with a portable toilet cubicle at a reduced price, delivering and installing it as well as regularly servicing it - service costs £30 each time and this needs done roughly every two weeks, depending on how many visitors have visited.

For 2024/25 our licence was again transferred, this time to CAMpRA's own licensing group, a new division known as CAMpRA Rally Group. We are listed on  SearchforSites and several other apps, sites and directories but we aren't on a main route, nor are we on the road to anywhere. In fact, I'm considering rebranding, as it seems to be a trendy thing to do... Frugaldom, the road to nowhere campervan stopover site. It's quiet apart from the sounds of wildlife, birds and the occasional neighs from the sanctuary ponies. If Vincent Van Goat hears you, he will call back in the hope that you go to see him. 

We are quite remote, possibly too remote for some, but being less than 5 miles from the main A75 with a hardstanding yard, it is possible to park here overnight at any time of the year and in all weathers. You will be surrounded by the sounds of nature. We do have neighbours, by way of the cottage at the crossroads and you may hear the calls of the nearby farmer moving his sheep - it's more of a whooping and yelling sound if the woolly jumpers get over the wall and escape into the adjoining forest. Our next nearest neighbour is working forest land and then Airies Wind farm. The road to our gate is not signposted other than to say it's a dead end but it actually ends well over a miles past Frugaldom, at the far side of the windfarm before turning into a dirt track leading to the to farmland, fells and some ancient cairns.

What services can we offer? Black and grey water waste by way of the tank and the soakaway drain. No nasty chemicals to go down the soakaway drain. We do have a chemical toilet on site but that is for the exclusive use of the volunteer workforce. Campervans and motorhomes stopping over at Frugaldom need to be fully contained with their own toilets and water storage on board as we have no running water here, nor do we have bins, electricity or superfast broadband. We are sometimes lucky enough to have mobile signal but even that seems to depend on the weather. Perhaps our rebranding should be something like 'the secret hideaway' or 'the forgotten corner'.

We are a sanctuary for the animals who live here, we are a sanctuary for some of the people who visit here and we are a sanctuary for all wildlife that lives within our boundaries. We dont mind people bringing their pets so long as all pets are kept on short leads and under control at all times - plus, you clean up after them. We have ground nesting birds, an active community of adders - Britain's only venomous snake - plus several feral cats, the badger clan and pine marten, to name but a few. We have three huts on site that are used by members of our group for retreat space, wildlife watching and quiet passtimes such as art and writing or else as off-grid accommodation while volunteering. There is also a horsedrawn bowtop wagon parked by the yard, although that may be sold to raise some extra funds for Frugaldom. 

If you would like to support this worthwhile project, you can do so as Friends of Frugaldom and from each £5 per month subscription, we get about £1 per week towards the cost of feeding all the animals and looking after the project.

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