John Fowler Holiday Parks celebrate diamond anniversary

In 1953, after five years of service, John Fowler made the decision to leave his career in Merchant Navy with nothing more than £300 in his pocket.

His big idea – buy a second hand caravan and start up a business offering self-catering holidays. 60 years later that idea has developed into a chain of 14 parks spread across Devon, Cornwall and Somerset, with an annual turnover of £40 million.

John bought his first caravan for £100 then found a local farmer willing to site the caravan in one of his fields. An advert was placed in a local newspaper and thus John Fowler Holidays was born. John not only began by running the business single handed but also worked as an agent selling cattle feed to ensure a little regular income. Now a days the business has become one of the UK’s biggest self-catering providers, a far cry from that lone caravan in Devon.

Now at 85, Fowler is still actively involved in the business, providing ‘family-run run’ for all. For more information visit

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