However, do NOT book any holiday with Matthews Holidays. My heavily pregnant wife and I arrived after a 14hr drive expecting a warm welcome by a team of reps. Despite the fact that Dan who is there on a contract to renovate the sheds (because they are far from mobile homes) he went out of his way to make us feel welcome. Sadly tho, he is NOT a rep. We were shown to our first shed and suffice to say, I complained to Dan that the standard and quality of the shed was disgusting and demanded a refund there and then. I also phoned The company back in England and I was told that the holiday and my £1000+ was NON REFUNDABLE. Dan informed me that he was now out for evening so couldn't move us until the next morning. The company told us he was on another site! I want to reiterate that in no way was any of this Dan's fault which is what the company are trying to suggest. The next day we moved into a bigger shed which had not been cleaned. Pictures include dead flies, damp mattresses, mouldy spores, leaks, guttering hanging off walls, broken fridges and burn marks to say the LEAST. We suffered a further three nights and on the day BEFORE we left I phoned England to complain. Whilst it's not my main job, I am also a qualified Gas Engineer. The reason this is relevant is because I amongst all the other complaints, phone recordings and photos that I have, I also told Colin and his delightfully sarcastic daughter Kate that if the gas water heater and cooker job had been in England I would have been duty bound to cap them off! Yes folks, that's how dangerous these gas appliances were. Colin's advice to me was "remove the outer casing, disconnect the gas pilot assembly and blow down it to clean it out". I pointed out that that not only wouldn't work, but was highly illegal and DANGEROUS!
After a long debate about how great his 20 year old out of date sheds were, Colin's advice to me was "if you don't like it, you can go somewhere else!". So, a day early, that's exactly what I did. Having phoned a now uncontactable building manager (sorry rep) and having asked the owner of the company what they were going to do about my horrendous holiday, their advice was to go somewhere else!
Having read other reviews I see complaints have been made but Colin and his family of inept directors have failed to correspond in the hope that the customer will go away. Sadly though, I work in law which is my main job and I won't go away! I have already reported this company to Les Professionals du Gaz (French version of gas safe), I have contacted the camp site managerial team to make them aware of this situation and I have a case logged with ABTA who also have nearly all of my 60 odd photos and other evidence of this utterly horrendous break. I will also instruct legal action in a small claims court (depending on out come of ABTA as that's also legally binding) and I will notify a very good friend of mine at the Guardian. And before anyone thinks I'm going to far, I have recordings of me asking Colin to be reasonable and to understand a customers point of view. He and his entire team point blank refused to accept even the slightest criticism of their sheds and I also have it on record that they haven't truly been updated or renovated for over 15 years.
If you want to go to this amazing camp site PLEASE PLEASE with book with Euro Camp, AlFresco or Kel Air.
I cannot stress enough that Matthews Holidays will NOT look after you. Irrespective if I am an irate or disgruntled customer, do not waste your hard earned money on this company!
Like all the other reviews here I have yet to have any response from Colin and have told him every step of the way what my plans are: he and his family simply do not care that they have ruined a family experience and it is for this reasons, I will not stop until they rectify this situation.
Finally, in relation to the gas safety (which they tell me is carried out regulatory), if you have a family PLEASE PLEASE do not risk their lives because of this company!
Sadly, I cannot upload any other photos because of data size but I am happy to provide anyone any further evidence regarding this company. I would also like it if you have also had a bad experience with this firm as I would like to consider adding you to an ongoing legal action against them.
Please contact me to discuss.
GO SOMEWHERE SAFE AND REPUTABLE!
Ps. For the non gas engineers amongst us - a flame with yellow tips from a gas appliance indicates that it is releasing carbon monoxide. This is also backed up with black soot stains surrounding the appliance (I have pictures of the entire appliance surrounded by massive soot marks).
If this doesn't make you think about the safety of your children then I don't know what will.
Remember, this review is about MATTHEWS HOLIDAYS sheds, not Clarys Plage which is a great place for the entire family.
Travel operator: Matthew Holiday Sheds
Hotel tip: Stay at any other operator as per review
Travel operator: KeyCamp
The funstation was boring and had few kids attending again due to the reps themselves. The bar area is far to small and we gave up, locally there is not much around a few pizza places, odd bar. There is a large supermarket about a three min walk away, but beware it closes about three on sunday and on mondays the shelfs are empty. There is a superu about a 15 min drive towards challans which is excellent. The beach is about a 10 min walk but easier with the car. Sadly we had only 2 days of sunshine it rained non stop so this did affect everyones spirit so this may explain the poor review to an extent.
I would use keycamp again but would not go to France again.
Travel operator: keycamp
Site is near a beach but it is the worst stretch of beach along this coast - much better to head for Sion sur l'ocean or north to St Jean or Notre Dame de Monts for good beaches.
Also no good restaurants nearby, just typical snack bars.
If I was going to Vendee again, I would try to stay near Notre dame de Monts or better still on the Ile de Noirmoutier, which is much nicer.
Travel operator: Charles Alexander
The entertainment is hard to judge as we went slightly off peak and in the middle of world cup, so matches were being shown each night.
The real appeal of this site is it's excellent location, close to shops and a good beach, with a relaxed atmosphere and attractive parc area.
Travel operator: Keycamp
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