British Holidays was Haven Holidays' former sister brand. It was founded in 1988. In October 2000, Bourne Leisure purchased The Rank Group's UK leisure arm, Rank Leisure, for £700 million, which included the Haven, Butlin's and Warner Leisure Hotels chains. At the time of acquisition, Rank Leisure's Haven Holidays operated 55 resorts, whilst British Holidays operated 23. Bourne Leisure decided to retain larger operating units which accounted for approximately 85% of their customer flow, making it possible to upgrade the Haven parks to the same standard of the British Holidays chain.
Subsequently, the company disposed of 43 Haven and British Holidays resorts between 2001 and 2004. A number were sold to independent ventures and management buy-outs (for example, British Holidays' Lido Beach in Prestatyn, Clwyd). However a number of growing leisure chains acquired larger quantities of sites.
Following Bourne's acquisition of Rank Leisure in October 2000, the company began integrating its Haven and British Holidays chains during a seven year development phase. The individual brands "Haven Holidays" and "British Holidays" continued to trade individually until November 2004, when 6 Haven parks and 2 British Holidays resorts were disposed of, reducing the number of parks in the British Holidays chain to 17 and the number of Haven parks to 18. At the same time, both brands merged as "Haven and British Holidays" and released a new brochure and website under that name. All 17 of the British Holidays parks that remained in 2004 are now Haven parks
Since 2006, most advertising for the chain has solely used the "Haven" name despite the company still continuing to legally trade as Haven & British Holidays. Finally in November 2007, the company ceased trading as "British Holidays" and the Haven name is now used throughout the chain, however the British Holidays logo can still be seen in many old signs and materials at former British Holidays parks.
Activities and facilites Edit
Activities and facilities across all original Haven and former British Holidays parks use standardized branding introduced by British Holidays in 1997, including "FunWorks" (main entertainment complex), "ShowBar" (family entertainment centre), "Boardwalk" (food court), Big Money (gambling arcade), "FoodWorks" (fast food outlets; many now replaced by Burger King, Papa John's and other external brands), "RopeWorks" (high rope activity centre), "SplashZone" (swimming pools), "SportsZone" (sports activities), "Oasis" (restaurant and bar) and "FunZone" (outdoor family activity / playground areas). In addition, all parks have a general store (branded as Everydays, Essentials, not at all or more recently SPAR or Londis), main reception and a special reception focusing on caravan sales, often branded as "Owners Exclusive" within the parks themselves. In 2002, Bourne Leisure began integrating the individual Haven and British Holidays brands and ever since, many activities and facilities at Haven parks have operated under the names introduced at British Holidays resorts in the late 90s.
The ShowBar entertainers, since 1997, have been known as "FunStars", replacing the "Haven Mates" title in former Haven resorts.
Parks originally owned by British Holidays Edit
- Seton Sands, East Lothian, Scotland
- Berwick, Berwick-Upon-Tweed, Northumberland
- Haggerston Castle, Berwick-Upon-Tweed, Northumberland
- Thorpe Park, Cleethorpes, Lincolnshire
- Hopton, Great Yarmouth, Norfolk
- Allhallows, Allhallows-On-Sea, Kent
- The Orchards, St Ostyth, Essex
- Church Farm, Bognor Regis, Sussex
- Rockley Park, Poole, Dorset
- Burnham-on-Sea, Somerset
- Kiln Park, Tenby, South Wales
- Lydstep Beach, Tenby, South Wales
- Penally Court (sister park to Kiln Park)
- Quay West, New Quay, South Wales
- Greenacres, Porthmadog, North Wales
- Cala Gran, Fleetwood, Lancashire
- Marton Mere, Blackpool, Lancashire
- Lakeland, Flookburgh, Cumbria
- Wemyss Bay, Firth Of Clyde, Scotland (sold off to Parkdean)
- Pendine Sands, Carmarthen, South Wales (sold off to Parkdean)
- Lido Beach, Prestatyn, North Wales (sold off to Lyons)
- Manorbier, South Wales (sold off to Coastal Resorts)
British Holidays' main mascot was Bradley Bear, who appeared alongside human characters DJ Naughty Ned, Polly The Ragdoll Popkins, Sailor Sue, Tommy The Toy Soldier, Rooster and Magical Merlin The Mighty Wizard. However, both brands began integrating in 2002. As a result, Rory the Tiger was introduced to British Holidays customers, while Bradley Bear visited Haven Holidays resorts. Rory and Bradley appeared at parks owned by both individual brands with characters from their respective companies. Both brands completely merged in 2004 as 'Haven and British Holidays' and since merging, both mascots are seen in all parks, alongside other children's characters from both former companies such as Greedy the Gorilla, Anxious the Elephant, Ned and Polly forming the Seaside Squad, however, Sailor Sue was scrapped in 2000, Rooster was Scrapped In 2002 And Magical Merlin the Wizard was scrapped in 2009.