In the days before the Motor Car generally speaking the only true living caravans (Bed, Stove etc) in existence were those used by the travelling Romany’s as they wondered around from town to town and had been in use for many years with other examples for Herdsmen and Shepherds.
Travel around the Country was restricted to those able to afford a holiday who would pack a few Trunks, load them onto a Carriage and or Wagon and set off around the country or set sail for foreign parts unloading at the port and hiring carriages and wagons abroad. Staying in this country each day would end at an Inn or Coach House for the night then start again the next day. The coming of the railways meant they could travel in a day to most parts of the country and so only unpack at their final destination, but again only at an Inn or Hotel, ideally one provided by that Railway Company, so they could get more out of you. But this was only affordable by the gentry as up until the turn of the 19th/20th Century the working masses could not afford to do this, yet alone the fact that paid holiday leave did not exist. However early Caravans were built in this period by the Coach Builders of that day, but who might be able to afford them. Once again the gentry or new middle classes who were now able to buy a car and therefore logic dictates that they might like to have a little home to tow behind their cars to provide a bed and the rudiments.
Development was slow and mainly aimed at the higher classes. It was mainly after WW2 that saw the rise in the demand for the Caravan/Camper by every day folk. Many men felt confined by a hotel and having been forced to live under the stars during war service jumped at the chance of this potential cheap moveable home on wheels especially as car were more affordable.
And so the story goes on and now many are almost the size of a small house and home from home.
Examples displayed range from 1913 – 1970’s and include samples from the following manufacturers;
Commer – Campers
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