Follow Center Parcs

If you go down to the woods today...Ten things you didn’t know about Center Parcs

Press release   •   Jul 04, 2013 00:00 BST

As the UK’s leading short break provider, the Center Parcs name has become synonymous with providing high quality accommodation and a range of activities all set deep within the forest. Yet, after 26 years in the UK, there are still some facts you might not know about Center Parcs.

From rescuing tropical plants from around the world, to employing someone whose job it is to care solely for Red Squirrels, there’s more than meets the eye at Center Parcs’ four UK villages.

Here are ten things you might not know about Center Parcs:

  1. A good nights sleep - On a change-over day, Center Parcs’ team of housekeepers change and make over 12,000 beds in 4 hours - that’s 40 beds per minute!
  2. On your bikes - Center Parcs hires 200,900 bikes to families each year and its Cycle Center staff spend around 500 hours each week maintaining and building bikes so that families can keep pedalling through the forest
  3. Tropical Paradise - All of the tropical plants inside each of Center Parcs’ Subtropical Swimming Paradises have been rescued from around the world. Alerted by a network of contacts in far-away countries such as Indonesia, Bali and Thailand, Center Parcs rescue plants that are ear-marked for the copy by offering them a new life at one its four villages
  4. Serious about nature - Center Parcs has it’s very own Red Squirrel Ranger dedicated to looking after an endangered colony of protected red squirrels at Center Parcs Whinfell Forest in Cumbria
  5. Tickling tastebuds - Around 421,465 pancakes are flipped and served at Center Parcs’ original Dutch style Pancake House each year; that’s the equivalent of 1,154 pancakes per day!
  6. Open for business – All four Center Parcs Villages are open to guests 365 days a year and has only ever had to close three times in the past 25 years
  7. Pool perfection - Center Parcs has the cleanest pool water in the UK thanks to its revolutionary UV water treatment systems and employs around 320 lifeguards in its Subtropical Swimming Paradises to maintain safety and perfection
  8. Carbon Cutters - Everyone at Center Parcs has worked hard to reduce carbon emissions by 5% since 2010, the equivalent of driving around the world over 600 times
  9. Woodland Awakenings - Center Parcs woodland is home to several species of bat including the largest (Noctule) and the smallest (Pipistrelle). Center Parcs Sherwood Forest in Nottinghamshire also homes around 57 different species of breeding bird and hald of the UK’s 34 different dragonfly
  10. Come rain or shine - Center Parcs has over 200 indoor and outdoor activities and, heats the air and water in each Subtropical Swimming Paradise to a tropical 29.5 degrees centigrade so there’s fun to be had all year round

Contact information

Center Parcs Press Office

Telephone: 01623 821733


Sustainability facts and figures

Committed to enhancing the forest and wider environment, Center Parcs aims to be one of the leading sustainable ‘Large Scale Tourist Destinations’ in the UK.  The Center Parcs Sustainability Strategy, launched in 2011, promises to reduce Center Parcs carbon emissions by 20% and produce 10% of its energy from renewable sources by 2020.  Center Parcs currently uses a variety of different energy saving choices including:

  • New and refreshed accommodation projects have included environmentally efficient technology such as:
    • Ground source heating
    • Solar panels
    • Photovoltaic
    • Combined heat and power plants
    • Energy-saving LED lighting
    • Water-efficient showers
    • Low-energy kitchen appliances
    • Intelligent thermostats
  • Electric vehicle fleet for housekeeping and technical services

Center Parcs is investing in energy efficiency and renewable technologies - such as District Heating - to achieve the aim of consuming 25% less than the average existing Center Parcs village. 

Notes to Editors

  1. Center Parcs has five Villages across the UK; Sherwood Forest in Nottinghamshire, Elveden Forest in Suffolk, Longleat Forest in Wiltshire, Whinfell Forest in Cumbria and Woburn Forest in Bedfordshire which opened to guests on 6 June 2014
  2. As the leader in the UK short break holiday market, Center Parcs regularly achieves average annual occupancy in excess of 97%
  3. Center Parcs offers weekend, (Friday to Monday) or midweek (Monday to Friday) breaks and welcomes over 1.7 million guests each year, with 96% of guests expressing an intention to return
  4. The Center Parcs concept is to provide a range of high quality accommodation, shops, restaurants and exceptional leisure facilities, carefully nestled amongst 400 acres of protected forest environment
  5. This concept originated in Holland in 1967, with the first UK Center Parcs opening in 1987. Center Parcs is now a separate entity in the UK, owned by The Blackstone Group
  6. Center Parcs has been awarded the following accolades since 2008: the Green Business Award for Biodiversity Protection, Visit Britain 5 Star Rating, Hospitality Assured, Biodiversity Benchmark - Land Management, Carbon Trust Standard, Good Spa Guide Award, ISO14001, Investors in People
  7. Center Parcs has recently been announced ‘Best Family Holiday Provider’ in the Tommy’s Awards for the eleventh year in a row