The Old Airfield

UK England South East England Hampshire Brockenhurst

  • 10+ metres between camping pitches
  • Staggered showering times
  • Distance markers in shared facilities
  • Contactless check in
  • Extra toilets/showers
  • Deep cleaning of shared facilities
  • Deep clean between glamping guests
  • "We're Good To Go" accredited
  • Hand sanitising stations
  • One-way flow
  • Campfires allowed
  • Dogs welcome
  • Groups welcome
  • Campfires Allowed
  • Beaches nearby
  • Good walks nearby
A New Forest airfield that's been overtaken by nature, less than 10 minutes' drive from the coast

This old RAF base in the south eastern corner of the New Forest was so vital to the Second World War it used to operate under a code name. Today the tarmac's been torn up and grass and shrubs have taken over but its main merits as an airfield turn out to be just as convenient as a campsite. It's incredibly flat (great for pitching a tent), it's spacious and open (ideal for enjoying big blue skies) and it's just three miles as the bomber flies from the south coast.

Opening for the first time in 2021, the 30-acre space is reliably run by the family behind two other popular campsites in the New Forest (Harry's Field and Harry's Meadow), so the team know a thing or two about pleasing campers. Everything here is temporary but it's also very thoroughly thought through. There are piping hot gas-powered showers, good eco-friendly loos and a number of food trucks visit the campsite throughout the summer. And though campervans and motorhomes are welcome, the focus here is very much on back-to-basics family camping, with tents dominating the scene and more bicycles about the place than there are cars.

Perhaps the nicest thing about the campsite is the fact that, though it's vast, the make up of the former airfield breaks it all down into a series of small spaces. It's easy to arrive with friends, take off across the heathland and find a place to make your own. At the southern end, for example, there's a copse of beech and oak trees, where manager Vivien has set up a stretch tent and some of the facilities are found. In the middle of the site, meanwhile, there are two small segments drilled by the local farmer and full of standing wheat (or stubble in late August). It's as though there's a tiny patch of farmland within the campsite, framed by the grassy lines of the old runway.

While the campsite is wonderfully open – great for enjoying sunrises and huge summer sunsets – it's not long before you get into the trees if you want to. One of the best ways to get around here is by bike. Route 2 of the National Cycle Network runs directly past the campsite gate and you can venture north along car-free trails in the Holmsley area or cycle south, towards the coast on a series of quiet lanes. There's an easy route to Burley – one of the most quaint and popular villages in the whole national park – that's about four miles long. Take your time and you'll see plenty of New Forest ponies along the way, as well as potentially deer and other wildlife too. Or head off to Highcliffe Beach. There's less wildlife there but plenty of seagulls and a good number of fish and chip shops where you can find some tasty supper.



Composting toilets, hand-washing basins and a new shower block with hot showers (and good pressure!). There are designated washing up areas and drinking water points and firepits are available to hire, with seasoned logs for sale. A breakfast truck visits the campsite throughout summer and there is barista-style coffee, too, along with a pizza oven on weekends and other food trucks that visit on different days of the week.

Suitable For

Tents, campervans, motorhomes and dogs – yes. Large groups are welcome by prior appointment but rowdy party groups are not.


If you prefer a more active break, you are in the ideal spot. There are endless walking trails right from your tent, some of the New Forest’s most popular cycle tracks, and plenty of places for den building and tree climbing in our own little copse.

Nearby Bolderwood is one of the most beautiful forests in the area where you can watch the fallow deer being fed, there are also many walks  in the woods for all abilities and a large picnic area amongst the tall trees, alongside which is a New Forest information centre.

Bring a hammock and set up a chill out pad under the branches if the weather hots up too much, or pop down to Highcliffe or Mudeford beaches  (4 miles) for some water sports and fish and chips by the sea.

Food & Drink

Nearby Burley and Bransgore have plenty of lovely New Forest pubs and cafes, and the sandy beaches of Mudeford and Highcliffe are 4 miles away with very good restaurants and pubs. Try fish and chips on Mudeford Quay over looking our favourite beach, Hengistbury Head.


Late May half-term, July and August only.

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The Owner Says

The team behind Harry’s Field, one of the New Forest’s most celebrated and established campsites, are pleased to reveal The Old Airfield in the south of The New Forest. We are near Burley and four miles from the sandy beaches at Mudeford and Highcliffe.

If you are desperate for open space and endless skies, The Old Airfield has both in abundance.

Escape the house and venture into the heart of the New Forest. Just a few miles from Burley, an ancient village with a history of local witches and sprightly fairies, The Old Airfield is a vast, 30 acres of well-drained and flat camping ground, but we have chosen to limit the capacity – so you won’t struggle to claim your corner of the countryside.

Overlooked by nothing more than a smart copse of beech and oaks, at The Old Airfield, the only distractions come from the forest’s wild inhabitants, the New Forest ponies and their foals will be watching from the surrounding heathland, as you relish the great outdoors.

But it wasn’t always this way. As the name suggests, in the 1940s The Old Airfield was an RAF airstrip, perfectly situated for reconnaissance missions over continental Europe.

The proximity to the coast brought planes to Burley. They may have gone; mother nature has reclaimed the land and just a short four-mile jaunt from the campsite, some of the New Forest’s best beaches are to be found.


Loads of camping pitches (over 100) but plenty of space and lots of little areas to call your own. All pitches are informal, just find a place you like and pitch.

Grass Pitch

Grass pitch Sleeps 6 100 Available
Due to the size of The Old Airfield, there are no preallocated pitches, so you can select an area that best suits you.

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Contact The Old Airfield, The Old Airfield Campsite, Forest Road, Burley, Christchurch, Hampshire BH23 8EB

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Getting There

Forest rd is off the A35 which is a direct route from the M27. There is a train station 3 miles away. Hinton Admiral Train Station, which has direct trains from London Waterloo.


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Why book with I Love This Campsite?

  • Best Price Guarantee, with no fees
  • Instant booking confirmation
  • Trusted for over 10 years
  • A chance to win prizes in our regular competitions

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