Parking was easier, but I should have paid more attention to the number of minibuses and people carriers scattered about.
Check in this year remained in the Reception area, but it was still chaos, I nearly cried and walked back out when I saw the queue, but like last year I couldn't face the drive home after just driving 250 miles. Thanks to people cutting the queue or heading straight to the front if thay had a query after they had received their keys, it took me 90 minutes from joining the end of the queue to getting my key. I had to remind the person serving me that as I was in Club accommodation I should receive a free bottle of wine and free newspapers so they had to go off to find the vouchers.
As a Club customer I was also to receive free bedding instead of paying per bed, as I wasn't given any I assumed that it was already in the chalet. It wasn't, although as all chalets now seem to be left unlocked until occupied there may have been some in there at one point.
The chalet was not very clean, unlike last year, I had to clean the work surfaces, table tops and chairs before they could be used. The hob was rusty and the fridge leaked. The windows were dirty and greasy. The bathroom door did not shut completely and scrapped across the floor with the movement that it did have.
I had to carry the microwave across the kitchen as there were no plugs near it.
You can just see the rusty hob.
The heater was badly marked.
The leaky fridge
A hole in the worksurface where the old telly used to be.
The sum total of the crockery in the chalet
A rare moment of peace.
Last year in my Classic chalet I had constant hot water without having to switch between hot water and the hob/oven being on so I assumed that in the higher grade accommodation that this would be the case too. It was not, as I found out at 5am on the second morning.
I got very little sleep on the first night due to the noise by other holiday makers, I know this is not something Pontins can control, but it goes to show the level of guests this time that they stand outside a stranger's chalet to smoke and chat so as not to disturb people in their own.
There were also a lot of school age children about, mostly in the triangle of chalets where I was based, the group above me were particularly noisy - dragging furniture, slamming doors, throwing things off the balcony, shouting at people in other chalets - even when they arrived back in the early hours of the morning.
It turns out that I was sharing my accommodation triangle with groups from two schools for disadvantaged children and children with behavioural problems, all paid for by their local council. Why Pontins chose to house a single traveller in this block I do not understand.
The next morning I went to the shop to pick up my free newspaper, despite being advertised as opening at 8am it did not open until 9am.
The swimming pool did not open until 10am by which time I had lost interest in going for a swim.
After a second sleepless night I decided enough was enough and packed up ready to go home, this was when I found out that the hot water DID in fact run out.
I was on my way home by 6.30am.
I will not be going to Pontins again unless changes are made.