The JK Open Day: All Good Things Come to an End

The JK Open Day: All Good Things Come to an End

Written by the JK Team
Published 12 January 2023
Just Kampers

Unfortunately, we’re calling time on the Just Kampers Open Day, as a number of factors have made it unfeasible to keep the event going, and we won't be holding it again in the immediate future.

While we’d scheduled in 9th to 11th June 2023 for our next JK Open Day, it’s now not possible to hold the event here at JK HQ.

Instead, we’ll be raising money for Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice Care by supporting the Phyllis Tuckwell Motor Show, their event in Churt, Surrey, on 6 August 2023.

Over the years the JK Open Day has helped us to raise well over £110,000 for charities including Cancer Research UK, Great Ormond Street Hospital, and Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice Care.

Why is the Just Kampers Open Day coming to an end?

It’s just no longer manageable for us to keep the Open Day going, with factors like site security, costs, and logistics mounting up to bring an end to ten years of fun with our customers, friends and families.

In short:
• Water here is supplied by a bore hole, which can’t keep up with the increased demand,
• The locking security gate creates overnight access issues, but is required for other businesses’ insurance and to protect farm equipment,
• Difficulties getting everyone in and out safely, along a single-track road,
• Concerns around the people who live in the houses bordering JK HQ,
• The increasing costs of holding the event have made it harder to raise money for charity,
• Our neighbouring field is usually full of sheep, and they need to stay in there.

The Just Kampers Open Day has always been about raising money for charity, ever since it started. While we can’t use the Open Day as a charity fundraiser any more, we’re still dedicated to supporting charities.

The winding country lanes around JK HQ are beautiful, but they're not ideal for moving hundreds of classic and modern VWs around!

JK is supporting the Phyllis Tuckwell Motor Show

In 2023, we’ll be continuing to raise money for Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice Care by supporting their Phyllis Tuckwell Motor Show on 6 August 2023, which will be held in Churt, Surrey. They’re in the process of confirming the classifications of entry and the structure of the event, which in previous years has been attended by over 500 classic and eclectic vehicles. Once all the details are in place, they’ll be opening registration online. 

The hospice has been kindly offered this wonderful private venue, free of charge. The owners of the site have a magnificent collection of over 60 pristine classic cars, over 100 petrol pumps and thousands of pieces of memorabilia, which you’ll be able to check out at the Phyllis Tuckwell Motor Show.

If you’d like to be sent a link to Phyllis Tuckwell’s online registration form, please email: ptmotorshow@pth.org.uk

We also want to tackle more fundraising challenges, especially after we raised over £1,000 for Breast Cancer Now by running through freezing cold, waist deep puddles during the GRIM Challenge earlier this month.

We’re already planning to take part in the London to Brighton bike ride in September, and are already eyeing up a number of smaller challenges to tackle throughout 2023. 

For a longer answer as to why we’re cancelling the Just Kampers Open Day, here’s a fuller explainer:

Water:
We’ve had sporadic water outages at the last few JK Open Days, which ruins the fun for everyone.

The water here is supplied from a bore hole, which just can’t keep up with the demand from toilets, showers, vendors and visitors. This extra demand also affects the other people who live and work at Stapeley Manor, alongside Just Kampers, which causes them to also be without water.

Logistics:
Winding country roads and single-track lanes aren’t an ideal route for gathering hundreds of VWs and other vehicles together for a weekend, especially if people need to pop out while others are still coming in.

There’s only one way into the site, a narrow road which is where the locking gate is, and it has a number of homes directly on it, which makes it a stressful weekend for the people who live here.

Site security:
Another issue which affects the homes and businesses around JK HQ is the number of people coming in and out of the site throughout the day and night.

We’re based on a working farm, in a converted aircraft hangar which now houses our warehouses and offices, as well as several other businesses.

There’s a metal gate which is shut and locked to restrict access overnight, to protect the businesses and machinery on the site. The gate is required by some businesses’ insurance policies, and totally prevents vehicle access to the main area of the site.

Since this gate was installed, we’ve had keyholders on standby at JK HQ during the Open Day, but the locked gate has the potential to create issues for anyone who arrives late, or who has a medical emergency during the hours that the gate is locked.

Costs:
We’ve always used the JK Open Day to raise money for charity, with every penny from camping tickets going to charity, as well as all donations from vendors, traders and visitors also being given directly to our chosen charity.

With the cost of seemingly everything on the rise this year, it would cost us far more to hold the Open Day than it ever has before, which makes it harder to raise money for charity this way.

Sheep:
The field people camp in for the JK Open Day is usually full of sheep (which is pretty clear from the amount of, uh, ‘presents’ they leave behind!), and they’ll need to spend more time in there from next year, which means we’ll be less likely to be allowed to use the field.

We hadn’t ever really imagined bringing the JK Open Day to an end, and we certainly didn’t expect sheep to be a contributing factor, but here we are!

Thank You from the JK Team 

We wanted to say a massive Thank You to every single person who has joined us for one of our JK Open Days over the last ten years, and to everyone who's helped contribute to our donations to charity, too. It's amazing to have created such a well-loved event, and to have raised over £110,000 for charity doing so. 

None of it would have been possible without the support of our customers, friends, and families, so thank you to everyone who came along to a JK Open Day, donated to our fundraisers, or spread the word about our events. 

We're sure a lot of you will be disappointed that the JK Open Day can't continue, and we certainly are too. Still, we're excited for the future and thrilled that we can continue to support our chosen charities and be involved with fundraising events like the Phyllis Tuckwell Motor Show. 

Don’t worry, you’ll still see plenty of us in the years to come

We’ve got big plans for 2023, and as well as supporting the Phyllis Tuckwell Motor Show in August, we’ll be joining you at VW shows and events across the UK all year, from the VolksWorld Show in March through to Slough Swapmeet in November.

Whether we’re trading, sponsoring or just attending these shows, the JK Team will be out and about all year, driving, breaking, fixing, upgrading, and enjoying our classic and modern VWs and taking part in loads of events.

We’ve been attending VW shows since 1990, and we don’t plan to stop any time soon!

As always, we’d love to have a chat and a catch-up if and when you spot us, and we’re all very friendly and just as eager to chat about VWs and the scene as any other Volkswagen fan.

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