Newest Review: ... like an odd way to do things but to be honest it is far quicker for the staff and they simply hand out welcome packs with your key so you... more
Brean Unity Leisure resort - An alternative to Butlins
Burnham-on-Sea in general
Member Name: buckhysen
Burnham-on-Sea in general
Date: 02/02/09, updated on 02/02/09 (2036 review reads)
Advantages: Friendly, lots to do, good facilities
Disadvantages: Not as big or fashionable as Butlins, Pontins, Haven, etc
Before I start let me just say that Unity Farm is officially in Brean Sands, although it is on the main road as you go onto Burnham on Sea, so in reality it's pretty much between the two (Just wanted to explain before someone points out this is in the wrong guide).
Unity Farm is a fantastic, largely unknown large Holiday Park situated in Brean Sands, Somerset, and just half a mile or so from Burnham on Sea and only 6 miles from Weston Super Mare.
When I first visited the site back in the early 90's it was mainly just a site with a permanent Fair (Brean Leisure Park) and a huge car boot sale on Sunday mornings. But even back then it was a great place to go and spend the day/weekend with friends.
During the last few years Unity Farm, the Holiday/Caravan Park which was added during the mid 90's has steadily grown to a quite impressive size, with lots of amenities and Leisure facilities added.
Firstly, it's no Butlins, it's professionally run and a very nice place but Butlins has been around decades and although I've not been there since a young teenager, from memory Butlins was huge with huge facilities and entertainment, but in saying that I think Brean has a charm to it that Butlins/Pontins/Haven, etc doesn't have. It seems more personal and the staff more friendly and approachable. Not to mention that although busy it never seems as crowded and hectic as these huge Holiday resorts.
As you first drive into Unity Farm Holiday Park you book in at the small office type room to your right. If you are staying for the weekend then you simply book in, get your key and find your caravan, or find your plot if you have your own caravan or tent.
If you are staying for the week then you go into the Entertainment Bar (Dickies) at a pre specified time (Which is included with all other Holiday info sent to you when you book) and you queue for your key with the other Holiday makers arriving on that day.
This sounds like an odd way to do things but to be honest it is far quicker for the staff and they simply hand out welcome packs with your key so you are only waiting 5 minutes at the most.
Once you have your key (If you have booked a caravan) then you drive around to it. Each caravan plot has a free parking ticket, plus you can purchase an extra ticket for an extra car or guests during the week for £2.00 (Although I'm told this has now risen to £4.00), But when I last went for a weekend with friends we were given a free car parking ticket for every two adults, up to three cars so I'm sure this applies to holidays as well.
I've stayed at the Holiday Park four times now (A Holiday and three weekend breaks) and have seen the 4, 6 and 8 berth caravans, and believe me they are among the best I've ever stayed in.
They are huge, spacious, very smart and come with everything you need and expect from a modern caravan.
My only slight niggle is that the single beds in the 8 berth caravans are a little on the narrow side, but are fine in the 4 and 6 berth's.
As well as the caravans they also have some fantastic looking Villa's and lodges which range from 2 berth to 6 berth but I've yet to stay in these so cannot really give an accurate assessment, although they do look very nice on the website.
When you arrive you are given a welcome pack which includes your key, all information about the Park, details about how to contact staff, phone numbers, emergency information, etc.... Special offers for rides at Brean Leisure Park (Which is less than 10 minutes walk at most, depending on where your caravan is), a free swimming band for everyone, a huge pack of leaflets with money off coupons for local attractions and a welcome food pack (Milk, Eggs, Bread, etc).
There is also an option to order breakfast everyday, which is delivered to your caravan every morning (A fry up when I was there was £2.99), an option to order a patio set for the side of your caravan (£10) plus things like high chairs, wheelchairs, extra linen, etc, etc). All in all the prices are not bad.
You also get the following free facilities and services....
Gas & Electricity
Welcome food pack (For 7 day stay or more)
One swimming session per person per day
Children & Adult entertainment
Piglet Club (7 to 12 year olds)
Fishing (Rod licence required)
Cash bingo club
Plus you also get half price green fees for the 18 hole golf course on site, as well as discounts on tokens and wristbands for the Brean Leisure Park (Normally £18.99 for adults and £9.99 for kids), wristbands give you unlimited rides.
As briefly mentioned above there is lots to do on site, the Brean leisure Park is open daily from 10am (Although times vary with all facilities off peak) and although not massive you can easily spend a day there and not get bored... with lots of rides, arcades, bars, comedy club, restaurant, fast food and more.
This is open to the general public although Unity Farm holiday makers get the discounts. what I do like about the Leisure Park though is that it doesn't get hugely packed out so that you are queueing for hours for each ride. when I've been the kids have barely waited any longer than ten minutes for a ride, and usually can get straight on most things.
There is also a large Market on Saturday's and Sunday's as well as a car boot sale on Sunday's (The market is also at another caravan park just 5 minutes up the road on Wednesday's) and to be honest it's one of the best markets I've seen. Best deal being the huge fluffy towel stall in which I bought three for £10, and believe me they are fantastic value.
Also on site is the Swimming Pool, the Tavern club which is a restaurant and also an entertainment/comedy club for Adults at night, Tavern Country and Western club, Golf course, Bingo Hall.
Plus the largest family entertainment club... Dickies. Which is the most popular family gathering place during the evenings with live entertainment, food and arcade type machines for the kids and adults.
The Entertainment mainly caters for kids up until 9pm and then turns to a more adult audience... Nothing blue as kids are still allowed inside, but no more Cheeky girls or S Club 7 and usually a live band.
Last time I was there for the weekend they had Buck Fizz there. And I've also seen on their website that they've had other biggish acts, especially in the summer.
Next to Dickies there is also a small arcade mainly for kids, a take away which sells everything from fish & chips to curries to kebabs and a place to hire small carts to ride around the site... These come for one, two or four people and are great fun, and not bad value at £10 per hour for a four person cart.
Also on site are shops, a café, laundrette, children's play area, take away and more.
As I've mentioned this is not the biggest Holiday Park you will ever visit but there is more than enough on site to keep you entertained for a week or even two. But Brean also has beaches, shops, Bars, restaurant's café's, etc all within walking distance plus you have Burnham on Sea just 5 minutes drive up the road and Weston Super Mare just 6 miles away.
So a week or two here can easily be filled and there is a lot to do for all ages.
I would recommend Unity Farm and Brean leisure Park to any family who enjoy these places but are looking for a cheaper and in my opinion better alternative to Butlins, Pontins, Haven, etc.
They also offer some great last minute deals on their websites http://www.hru.co.uk/home and http://www.brean.com/index.asp
My kids love it here and are never bored. The resort is busy but never packed to the rafters so you can enjoy all the facilities within a great atmosphere without waiting around for too long. The only busy place is Dickies, so it's advisable to get a seat early (i.e. 7-7:30pm).
Summary: A great alternative to the big Holiday resorts at a lower price