The Great British Camp-Out: How to Go Camping in Your Own Garden

There’s nothing like spending an evening sleeping under the stars. But unfortunately, that’s a little tricky to do when you’re not allowed outside due to a Global Pandemic.

That’s why we’ve come up with this handy guide on how you can bring the outdoors to you. Here’s Blacks’ Guide on How to Camp in Your Own Garden.

Backyard Camping


The Great British Campout for NHS Staff

Although we may not be able to leave our homes at the moment, there are still plenty of home camping events being organised by the community to keep spirits up, while still respecting and adhering to the rules of lockdown.

Started by Ian Alcorn and supported by Blacks and Go Indoors, The Great British Campout for NHS Staff encourages people to camp out in tents, motorhomes or caravans all from the comfort of your own garden or driveway in order to try and raise some life-saving money for the NHS. So far, the campaign has already raised more than £160,000 in donations for NHS Charities Together via their JustGiving page.

The Great British Campout for NHS Staff

It all started when Ian set up a Facebook group for the cause. “The initial idea came from me wanting to do something with the kids at the weekend and treat them for all their hard work home learning,” he says. Hoping to try to raise £100 initially, he has been blown away by the response. With thousands of campers quickly getting on board and joining the group, and with more than 12,000 generous donators resulting in an ever-increasing total in the high thousands. The event even got a shout out from legendary DJ Chris Evans.

Head over to their official Facebook Group to see how you can get involved.


The Plus Side

Backyard camping is perfect for everyone, whether you’re a newbie or an experienced camper. Camping at home will mean you can spend some quality time bonding with the family, setting up camp, playing games, telling campfire stories and all while having tonnes of fun in the process.

Garden Campsite

The biggest benefits from camping from home have to be the money, time and effort saved on buying all the equipment, planning the trip and making sure everything goes smoothly. If you were venturing to a campsite, usually somewhere else in the country, you’d need to plan weeks ahead to ensure you get a campsite sorted, pick up all the equipment and get everything packed. However, by camping in your back garden, you take away all that added stress. No packing the car, no travelling for hours across the country, no hassle.


Setting up your cosy quarantine campsite

Camping trip to your back garden might take out a lot of the added stress of venturing out for a campsite, however, without proper planning, you’re going to be stuck with some very bored children in a grumpy mood wanting to go back inside. That’s why it’s important to try and keep the fun flowing, and the best way to kick things off is to get everyone involved in setting up your campsite.

Blanket Fort

Getting the campsite right is key. It’s essentially your second home for the night, so surely you want to make it as cosy as it can be, right? In order to get your home away from home (whilst still at home) set up properly, it’s going to take some teamwork. Set up your tent like you would at a regular campsite by finding a smooth, flat surface to get set up on, once you’ve found that you can get the whole family to work. Make sure everyone can pitch in! Get the kids to bringing some sleeping mats, blankets or even an inflatable air mattress to make it extra cosy for everyone. You can to illuminate your campsite by hanging some lamps or stringing fairly lights around the site. They should make a lovely soft glow to make night in the outdoors truly magical.


Keep the family busy

As mentioned earlier, without proper planning, you could be running the risk of having some very bored children on your hands, so you better try your best to keep them busy. Plan out a few fun games and activities for everyone to take part in, that way the whole family can spend some bonding time together!

Connect to a virtual festival: Summers around the corner and that usually means one thing, festival season is upon us. Unfortunately, due to the extreme nature of this pandemic, most major festivals this summer have been cancelled or postponed until further notice. This doesn’t mean you can’t still get stuck in however. There are plenty of online festivals to choose from, just find one that suits you and your family and get locked in.

Be the festival: If you want to take it a step further, why not set up a bit of the garden to be your stage, get the whole family together to form a band and be the headline act for your very own festival.

Family Festival

Build a fort: Using duvets, blankets and cushions from the house, the washing line, some branches and a bit of imagination, you can build the fort of your dreams. Whether it be a blanket fort, a cushion castle or a duvet den, it’s fun for everyone involved, and a well-built fort could stay up for long after the camping trip is over.

Tell campfire stories: You’re gonna need a nice relaxing way to wind down after a long day of fun and games. Gather the family around the fire to take turns telling spooky stories! Who can tell the best story?


Challenge yourself

Being right next to the house takes all the stress away from camping, but that’s all we want to take from the experience. We know it might be tempting to run inside the house and grab something you might have forgotten or something you didn’t think you’d want, but try and set a rule to stay outdoors during your backyard camping trip. You wouldn’t have the option to run back inside on any other camping trip. Try it and see how you get on.

That’s our handy little guide on backyard camping. Get out into the garden this summer and take part in the Great British Camp Out! Let us know how you got on over on our Twitter, we want to see all of your quarantine campsites! 

Stay Home | Protect the NHS | Save Lives

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Ben is passionate about the beauty of the outdoors. Stargazing, sightseeing and outdoor photography hold a special place in his heart. Now that beauty is at risk he’s keen to take a stand to try and fight back against this Climate Crisis. In his free time, Ben is a music fanatic. If there’s one place you can find him, it’s at a festival. Plus, he plays guitar, bass and piano, as well as producing his own electronic & UK Garage tracks. He’s also a regular at every Wetherspoons in his local area, so if you ever see him around, pull up for a pint?

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Gillian youell 04-05-20 10:24
I want to buy a family tent for my son and family in New JerseyUSA
Can Blacks post a tent to New Jersey
Neil 04-05-20 10:39
Hi Gillian,
Thanks for reading and commenting. Unfortunately, due to the current situation we only have delivery available for Europe. We are actively looking to improve on this and work towards delivery to the US and elsewhere. Apologies we can't get a tent to your family right away.

Paul Tennant 14-05-20 08:16
Out my tent up yesterday in back garden to give it an airing and to experiment with ways of hanging lights in it. Not easy, as the inner tent hangs from the rain cover. Slept in it overnight - or until 03.30, when I gave up as my toes and nose were too cold!
Neil 14-05-20 09:39
Hi Paul,
Was that an intentional sleep or a "i'll just lie down here for 5 minutes after my hard work" accident? Either way, good effort, and bonus point for taking the time to air your tent out. Did you find a solution with the lights?
Enjoy your camping.

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