AN award-winning glamping business on the outskirts of York is launching its second venture following a £250,000 investment by its owners.
Jollydays was established at Buttercrambe Moor Wood six years ago by husband and wife duo Christian and Carolyn Van Outersterp.
The business, which offers glamorous camping in 20 deluxe tents, was named New Business Of The Year at The Press Business Awards in 2009, and went on to be a winner and finalist in the White Rose and Visit York tourism awards.
Now Mr and Mrs Van Outersterp are in the process of launching their second venture, which they hope to open this summer.
The North Star Club is being created on a site between York and Beverley, featuring eight luxury lodges and creating around ten new jobs.
Mrs Van Outersterp said: “It’s a slightly different concept to Jollydays so has been set up as a different entity called The North Star Club.
“It’s a different proposition in that it’s glamping, but leaning more towards hotel comfort.
“Also it will be open 12 months of the year as the woodland suites are insulated.
“It’s all just a little bit more indulgent and romantic.
“This one will be on a lot smaller scale. There will be eight units initially, though we have permission for 50 in total. Each one is themed around the people and places of Yorkshire. It has a strong identity featuring the best of Yorkshire because we love Yorkshire.”
The couple appeared on the BBC Dragon’s Den programme appealing for funding for the North Star Club venture, however failed to secure an investment from the dragons.
Instead they have raised the £250,000 through their bank, retaining sole ownership of the business.
With the addition of the new site the businesses are expected to generate a combined profit of £4 million.
Mrs Van Outersterp said: “The last couple of years have been very challenging conditions for glamping.
“We’ve had extreme weather, with a some very wet summers followed by a very hot summer which saw people return to traditional camping.
“It’s not an easy business in many ways. However we have managed to consistently grow being the first people in the game in our area.”