Clas­sic Corn­wall

Si­mon Tre­go­ning

Cornwall Life - - INSIDE - SI­MON TRE­GO­NING

At the end of Au­gust each year the Cor­nish tourism in­dus­try ex­pe­ri­ences its own ver­sion of the Great Mi­gra­tion as the fam­i­lies re­turn home to face the first day of the school year and the oldies and youn­gies pour in to take their place. The mad mid-sum­mer rush is not unique to us and, be­ing an out of the closet Europhile, I de­cided to see how it works on the other side of the Chan­nel.

Here in the UK the Au­gust in­flux is a re­sult of the fact that ev­ery­one with school age chil­dren has to take the main sum­mer hol­i­day in a nar­row five to six week pe­riod. The French, Span­ish and Ger­mans do not have the same con­straint. The Span­ish sum­mer hol­i­days last from late June to early Septem­ber. The French and Ger­mans, on the other hand, have a sim­i­lar length of sum­mer school break to us but they stag­ger them by re­gion from late June to early Septem­ber.

Here at Clas­sic we have no­ticed that the Ger­mans and many of their neigh­bour­ing coun­tries re­ally do take ad­van­tage of this and a lot of them visit us in late June and July be­fore the Au­gust rush. We are very thank­ful for that be­cause the Ger­man speak­ing coun­tries ac­count for the vast ma­jor­ity of our for­eign vis­i­tors.

The French and Span­ish are more ‘home birds’ pre­fer­ring to hol­i­day in their own coun­tries. Nei­ther have to cram their hol­i­day tak­ing as we do but strangely they do seem very set on hol­i­day­ing in the first three weeks of Au­gust and they man­age to cre­ate even more traf­fic car­nage on a week­end than here at home. It seems to be a legacy of the days when all the fac­to­ries stopped their plant and ma­chin­ery, shut the gates and went on hol­i­day for the same few weeks. That is less com­mon now be­cause less of the pop­u­la­tion work in fac­to­ries, but the close-down ethic seems to be em­bed­ded – don’t try to go on a shop­ping spree in Spain in Au­gust, they are all at the beach.

So, what would hap­pen if we spaced our main hol­i­days over a ten week pe­riod in this coun­try. I sus­pect that we are more like the north­ern Euro­peans and would take ad­van­tage of the ex­tra free­dom lead­ing to less con­ges­tion, less weight on our ser­vices and prob­a­bly hap­pier guests and lo­cals. Worth a try?

‘In the UK the Au­gust in­flux is a re­sult of the fact that ev­ery­one with school age chil­dren has to take the main sum­mer hol­i­day in a nar­row five to six week pe­riod.’

ABOVE:Would longer hol­i­days in the UK mean more empty beaches in Corn­wall?

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.