The strength of the UK Leisure market is evident across the country. Manufacturers continue to stretch production and, in most sectors, seem unable to keep up with the volume of demand.
Recent Global and European events are believed to have again brought into sharp focus how the general public views holidaying abroad, with many shifting from prioritising the guarantee of great weather to one of keeping the family safe. It is believed that many more people will take advantage of a “Staycation” this year as a consequence, which will give a boost and create further opportunities for the UK Leisure market to demonstrate just how much it has evolved in recent times.
The weather that we have endured so far this year is shaping up to be similar to that experienced in 2014. The first quarter was very similar but it remains to be seen if we will be blessed with the long and hot summer that followed. Whilst 2015 certainly wasn’t cold, we did experience prolonged spells of heavy rain throughout much of the late summer and, whilst it did not seem to detract from the positives achieved, it did not help. Wet weather has unfortunately become a feature again this year, with January delivering 152% of average rainfall in the month, making it the fourth wettest on record. February brought with it high winds courtesy of Storm Henry, which was quickly followed up with much of the same from Storm Imogen, again the month was wet, depositing in the region of 130% of average rainfall. In early March we got our first glimpse of Spring with sunshine and much warmer temperatures, which should have helped the sodden ground to begin drying out in time for Easter, which was very early this year, with Good Friday on 25th March and Easter Sunday on the 27th. The Easter holidays remain the first important milestone for the season and decent weather has the ability to kick-start the rest of the summer selling period.
The recent Caravan, Camping and Motorhome show at the NEC in Birmingham underlined the popularity of the Leisure market, with a record breaking 87,589 visitors welcomed over the 6 day event. Glass’s were lucky enough to speak to many subscribers at the show and the overall impression is that business is brisk.