IDYLLIC RETIREMENT

IDYLLIC RETIREMENT

Priory Court is a private and separate gated park home village…

 

THE GROUNDS of Priory Park are beautifully landscaped and include a lake.

It’s hard to imagine a more idyllic location in which to relax into retirement than Priory Park - a mixed residential and holiday park - in coastal Suffolk.
Visitors and residents enter the park through automated security gates before venturing into 115 acres of private, south facing parkland, surrounded by rolling pastures and ancient woodland that flows gently down to the water’s edge.
The beautifully landscaped grounds feature immaculate lawns, lily ponds, wildflower meadow, woodland walks and panoramic river views across the River Orwell, a tidal estuary that leads out to the charming seaside town of Felixstowe. The Priory Park estate has been owned and run by the Little family for over 40 years.
“My Father, Peter, purchased Priory Park from Ada Buckingham in June 1981,” explains Priory Park Owner James Little. “Known as Alnesbourne Priory at that time, it enjoyed a mixed reputation and after years of neglect was a far shadow of what you can see today.
Over the past forty years, our family has poured three generations’ efforts into transforming potential into reality and creating the fabulous haven Priory Park is today.”
James and his wife, Lisa, have lived at Priory Park since 1986, first in a Pinelog Virginia and for the past 20 years in the house they built in the grounds. Priory Park has also been home to their two children, Jake and Sophie, who have both worked at the Priory during school holidays in their younger lives.
With Sophie now of to university and Jake continuing to take on more responsibility in the family business that he has worked in for the past five years, the future of Priory Park looks secure for future generations of the Little family.

TIP-TOP STYLE
Ensuring Priory Park is kept in tip-top condition is very much a team effort. James explains that the family is assisted by a team of 15-20 staff depending on the time of year:
“As you can imagine, keeping a 115-acre estate - the buildings, roads, infrastructure, flora and fauna - looking at their best involves a lot of effort from our teams. Thankfully we have great staff, most of whom have been with us for many years, who are all proud to be part of Priory Park.”
Within Priory Park, Priory Court is a private and separate gated park home village for residential use. Catering for the fifty plus age group, with no resident children, Priory Court comprises 100 bespoke bungalow-style homes. South facing and terraced with attractive brick walling, each home has its own private drive and generous landscaped plot.
Priory Court offers the best of both worlds for residents. They enjoy the security of their own private community whilst being part of a larger whole and benefiting from the grounds and facilities of the rest of Priory Park.
Within the grounds of the Park there are tennis courts, a heated outdoor pool, a nine-hole par 31 golf course, a popular Clubhouse bar and restaurant in a building dating back almost 1000 years, numerous woodland trails, and direct access to the shore of the River Orwell.
The homes within Priory Court are complemented by wide drives, grass verges and Victorian style streetlamps. With a wide range of homes, each is positioned at different heights and aspects to create an attractive, unregimented environment.
The variety of homes and the individualised nature of each was a conscious decision as James explains:
“Priory Court has been completely redeveloped over the years and we have sold homes from all of the main park home manufacturers. The redevelopment was all about customer choice which we felt would also make for a more interesting development. On the holiday home side of things, we have tended to work in the same way and have examples of most of the mainstream caravan and lodge manufacturers represented.”

HOLIDAY HOMES
The Little family were pioneers in the UK lodge market in the mid-80s and the holiday home side of the business caters for privately owned caravans and lodges where use is strictly limited to owners and their families. James says that “this enables us to maintain high standards and ensure the Park runs in a particular way.”
He continues: “There are several different holiday home planning consents within the 115 acres. At the moment we have 170 holiday homes in situ including our flagship Friars and original Abbots developments but do have planning for a gradual increase which over time will provide space for a further 125. As we have always tended to see development more as gradual evolution, this should keep Jake busy for the next twenty years!”
Four years ago, the Little family purchased a neighbouring small caravan park business to secure Priory’s boundaries. For now, and notwithstanding the rigours of running a business during Covid times, the focus is on maintenance and upkeep of the existing buildings to ensure all is in good order before starting the gradual redevelopment of Orwell Meadows. In time this will provide 40 new caravan holiday home plots which may well become a further lodge development, subject to planning in the future.
According to James, the Little family run Priory Park “in a low-key fashion without much fanfare.” It’s a very customer-centric business.
“Our aim is to be the best we can, providing a secure and exclusive environment for our customers to enjoy. We try to make the most of what nature has given us with the beautiful setting and treat our customers how we would like to be treated ourselves. Ultimately it is all about the people; without our customers or staff there is no business!”

BEWARE THE SLIPS AND TRIPS

BEWARE THE SLIPS AND TRIPS

All you need to know about holiday park insurance…

 

WINTER IS TRADITIONALLY the time to check if your park and all its assets are properly protected against any eventuality.

 

As a holiday and caravan park owner or manager, the quieter winter season is often used as an opportunity to run annual maintenance checks and undertake refurbishment to interiors and exteriors where needed.
This is also a time when it is important to make sure that your park and all its assets are properly protected against any eventuality.
“Holiday park insurance can help you to identify what your park insurance needs are, and to make certain that these are provided for with a cost-effective policy,” says Dave Moffat, Director of Pib Group Insurance, the company behind the popular Park Protect scheme.
Whilst holiday parks present similar risk to many businesses there are significant differences. Holiday parks rely on the infrastructure on the park in the form of underground pipes and hook ups, access barriers, on site lighting etc and it is important that your insurance policy can cater for this.
“Many holiday parks will also have holiday home hire feet and holiday home stock,” advises Dave. “As such it is important that a parks insurance policy is able to cater for such units and also the debris removal and re-siting costs associated with replacing holiday homes. ”These are just two of many areas to consider when insuring holiday parks and it is important that your needs are professionally assessed.

 

 

REVENUE LOSS
In addition to recouping the actual financial cost of rebuilding or buying new holiday homes and buildings, it makes financial sense to obtain insurance which will provide you with a cover for the loss of revenue or profit incurred following a material loss.
It is important that you seek professional advice in this area to make sure the sum insured and indemnity period are sufficient for your business needs and the period your business could be affected following a serious loss, such as a fire or flood.
Pib offers common sense advice: “Having members of the public stay in your caravans and spend time in your park on a daily basis also exposes you to other financial risks.
“We live in an increasingly compensation-based culture, in which some people are willing to sue for the smallest things. Though some compensation claims may be for fatuous reasons, there are also very real risks within any holiday park that could result in injury or loss.”
One indemnity limit area holiday parks do need to consider is the limit of indemnity under this cover as the levels of very serious losses has increased exponentially in recent years and claims well in excess of £5m are no longer unusual. Crucially the limit of indemnity is set at the time of the incident but the ultimate settlement amount can fluctuate depending on the calculators used for such claims at the time of settlement. It is not possible to buy additional cover after the event and if your limit of indemnity is exhausted you would be responsible for the shortfall.
All businesses with employees are required to have Employers Liability Insurance arrangements, which usually has a £10,000,000 limit of indemnity. As with Public Liability, all Holiday Parks should consider higher limits of indemnity as it is no longer inconceivable that a very serious injury to an employee could exhaust this cover. The cost of arranging such Excess Liability cover is relatively small and should be discussed with a specialist Insurance provider.

 

Each holiday park will have different insurance needs, depending on size and a variety of other factors. A large-scale park with hundreds of caravans will have different policy requirements to that of a smaller family run park.
Insuring more than 200 caravan and holiday parks across the UK, Park Protect provides tailor-made insurance for the specific needs of your business.
Meanwhile, with all the signs pointing towards another bumper year for the industry what do Holiday Parks need to think about in relation to Insurance.
Compass Insurance have consistently raised awareness about the importance of being insured for the right amount, whether that’s parks themselves or their owners and their individual caravans and lodges. As the costs of rebuilding and replacing park buildings and in particular, caravans and lodges increases, this places more emphasis on sums insured being accurate.
For Parks this means making sure that any buildings and infrastructure insured on their policy is accurate and in some cases a valuation or survey is a good idea especially if you haven’t reviewed this for a few years.
Analysis at the end of 2021 showed that the cost of rebuilding and repairing damaged buildings had increased 7.9% in the last 12 months and forecasts show this continuing to increase as shortages of materials and labour continue into 2022. With that in mind we’re introducing a valuation service for parks insured with Compass so they can have the peace of mind that comes with a professional valuation for their sums insured.
For the owners of individual caravans on your park this can have greater significance as the current issues with supply of new and second-hand units means that what a customer insured for in good faith just six months ago may already be less than the cost of replacing that unit in today’s market.

 

 

IN GOOD FAITH
Compass always look at what the customer insured for at the point the policy was taken out or renewed and base our assessment of any claim on that value. In 2022 our policies will also be updated to contain a provision for this growing trend so that customers don’t find themselves underinsured for no fault of their own.
Compass are renowned for our market leading Holiday Caravan and Lodge product but in 2021 they invested time and resource in developing and launching more products that parks and their customers can benefit from.
Its Residential Park Home product underwent a major overhaul including the introduction of two tiers of cover (Essentials and Extra) which enable the customer to tailor it to meet their needs, as well as the addition of Home Emergency and Legal Expenses as optional covers.

 

 

TRAVEL INSURANCE
They have also developed and launched products for owners of Touring Caravans and Motorhomes both of which give market leading levels of cover at very competitive premiums.
Finally, and new for 2022, Compass is excited to be announcing the launch of its travel insurance product for customers who book breaks on Holiday Parks in the UK.
This product has been developed specifically to meet the growing demand for UK holidays and gives the customer a wide range of cover including cancellation, curtailment and emergency assistance and also includes cover for Covid19 related illness or restrictions.

Caravan Guard (Leisuredays)
Tel. 01422 396 693
Email. park-operator@leisuredays.co.uk
www.leisuredays.co.uk

Compass Insurance
Tel. 0344 274 3908
Email. enquiries@compass.co.uk
www.compassparks.co.uk

Pib Group (Park Protect)
Tel. 01422 358 525
Email. hello@pib-insurance.com
www.pib-insurance.com

NEW IDENTITY FOR STUNNING CORNISH PARK

NEW IDENTITY FOR STUNNING CORNISH PARK

A BRAND NEW IDENTITY for the park reflects its gorgeous location near Polperro.

One of Cornwall’s most stunningly situated holiday parks has been re-christened with a new name which celebrates its unique location.
Now known as Polperro Holiday Park, it takes its title from the picture-perfect fishing port of Polperro which neighbours the park on Cornwall’s south east coast.

Owners, Park Holidays UK say the new name will help evoke far better the gorgeous scenery and magical atmosphere which awaits families coming here on holiday. The park was acquired earlier this year by the group and was previously known as Seaview Holiday Village.

The name change will also help avoid possible confusion with Seaview Holiday Park in Whitstable, Kent, which is also operated by Park Holidays UK.
Plans have been announced by the company to invest even further in Polperro Holiday Park’s facilities which include a modern indoor pool and family entertainments venue.

PARK PROTECT

PARK PROTECT

The Park Protect scheme provides commercial insurance for more than 200 caravan parks up and down the country.
Having spent 15 years building strong relationships in the caravan and holiday park market. The policy benefits including:
- Express Claims Handling – aiming to settle property claims up to £5,000 within 24 hours
- Park infrastructure i.e, Underground services, roads, pathways and lighting up to £100,000
- Fly tipping up to £50,000
- Stock of show Holiday Homes & Residential Units automatically covered up to £250,000
- Automatic £5,000,000 limit for Public Liability cover.

PIB Insurance Brokers
01422 358 525
www.parkprotect.co.uk

TURNING TIDES

TURNING TIDES

LEEDONS RESIDENTIAL PARK IS THE FLAGSHIP in Allens Caravans residential portfolio.

Planners are favourable to Park Home applications reports Jane Herbert...

Back in the mid-1930’s, when auto trader Bill Allen decided to display touring Allens Caravans on his garage forecourt in Wolverhampton to fill some empty space., He could never have foreseen that Auto Selling Cars would grow into the huge success Allens Caravans is today. But times were changing, and caravan sales took off. Bill’s curiosity was piqued. Just a few years later in the 1950’s, with business growing, Bill moved the company to the historic stately home of Wootton Hall inWarwickshire’s Henley- in-Arden, which is still Allens Caravans headquarters today. Here, he hosted the first-ever Annual Midlands Caravan Exhibition, and its success made Bill realise that he was onto something. In the 1960s he travelled to the USA where he was inspired not just by the trend for caravan holidays, but also by the increasing popularity of Allens Caravans for all-year residential living. Bill returned toWootton Hall convinced of the potential growth for residential caravan parks in the UK, and with caravan sales soon outstripping car sales, Allens Caravans was born. Today, Allens Caravans is one of the country’s leading Park Operators with a portfolio of 13 Holiday and Residential Parks across the Midlands and Wales. The business, which now employs around 160 staff, is still managed by Bill’s grandchildren and other family members, with joint Managing Directors, Joe Folkes and James Allen, heading up the team.

THRIVING BUSINESS
“Allens Caravans has come a long way since its foundation in the 1930’s,” explains Joe Folkes. “But at heart we are still a thriving family business, the owners of which are not just faceless names, but third generation working Directors who can be found at our Head Office or on the Parks looking after the day-to-day running of the company,” he continues. “As a whole team, we ensure the highest possible standards are delivered at our Parks, for the benefit of our customers,” he adds. “We are so proud of the excellent reputation we have built with those customers, and also our colleagues within the caravan industry.” Currently, five of Allens Caravans 13 Parks are residential: Broadway Park with 82 residents and Leedons Residential Park with 129 residents in Worcestershire; Wootton Hall in Warwickshire with 290 residents; Pendeford Hall inWolverhampton with 62 residents; and Overstone Solarium Residential Park with 80 residents in Northamptonshire. Typically, Allens Caravans Parks have all been chosen for their stunning locations in the great British countryside. Residents of both Wootton Hall and Pendeford Hall can enjoy the outstanding surrounding scenery of two former historic country estates. Similarly, Overstone Solarium is set amongst 115 acres of beautiful woodland – the perfect spot to relish in the peace and quiet of retirement.


GAMES ROOM
Both Broadway Park and Leedons Residential Park are situated just ten minutes’ walk from the charming and picturesque village of Broadway in the prime location of the Cotswolds. With a scenic setting nestled beneath the Cotswold escarpment and overlooked by Broadway Tower, the Parks are blessed with plentiful wildlife and both Broadway and Leedons hold the prestigious Gold David Bellamy Conservation Award. Residents at the two sister Parks also benefit from an enviable array of facilities including an indoor swimming pool, a three rink bowling green, tennis court, social hall, launderette and games room. Leedons Residential Park is the newer development of the two, and the flagship in Allens Caravans residential portfolio. Originally acquired in the 1980’s, Leedons has been the focus of considerable expansion over the years and several £million investment both in its infrastructure and leisure facilities. A proportion of the Park is devoted to holiday home ownership (ten months of the year) but the focus is on delivering Residential Park Homes for the over 50s semi-retired and retired. Phase three of the Leedons development has recently been released and work is currently continuing on around 40 plots. Phase four is already in the planning with more luxury homes with exceptional countryside views coming soon. Prospective residents can choose from a variety of manufacturers including Willerby, Omar, Stately, Lissett, Homeseeker/Prestige, Tingdene and Pathfinder. Each home has its own garden area, a shed or greenhouse, and parking for up to two cars adjacent to the property. Pets are welcome on site and amongst the team of eight staff, there are resident Park Managers and Wardens for peace of mind.

Despite Allens Caravans obvious growth, long term expansion for the residential park sector as a whole is still reliant on the vagaries of the planning process. “We are always striving to expand our Park portfolio and there are a couple of Parks in the pipeline for the near future,” explains Joe. “The supply of new, modern sites for Parks is always going to be the biggest hurdle. “Fortunately, the tides are turning, and as local communities, councils and consumers start to see Park Homes (rightly so) on a par with conventional housing, the easier planning applications for Residential Parks will be.” Allens Caravans continued success is also evident in their Holiday Park portfolio. A brand new luxury Holiday Park, Bredon View, opened in Worcestershire on May 1st this year, bringing a five year development plan to fruition. No mean feat considering the tricky trading conditions of the pandemic. “Park Homes, much like every supply chain industry, has been hit by delays due to Covid,” says Joe. “With hundreds of supplies involved in manufacture and construction, this has inevitably resulted in a knock-on effect of price increases and, more significantly, longer waiting times,” Joe points out. “But we continue to invest back into all our Parks, both in terms of facilities and infrastructure.We have a solid history of investment spanning nine decades and this spirit is ingrained into every new generation who take on the stewardship of the Allens Caravans brand.”

Allens Caravans
Tel. 01564 792323
www.allenscaravans.co.uk

 

Residential Park Operator – CALL OF THE WILD

CALL OF THE WILD

WHIPSNADE PARK HOMES is situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty on the Dunstable Downs. Photo - ZSL Whipsnade Zoo © ZSL

Unusual neighbours for some Bedfordshire park home residents...

Every park has its own unique attractions for home buyers but those of Whipsnade Park Homes are definitely more exotic than most! This third generation family- run business is situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty on the Dunstable Downs just a couple of hundred metres from the UK’s largest zoo and safari park, ZSL Whipsnade Zoo. “On a typical day, the sights and sounds of the safari park are never far away,” explains Park Manager Cheryl Sears. “A public footpath runs around part of the perimeter fence and it’s very common to see various species of deer, as well as elephants and camels from there.When the zoo is running its steam train, we can often hear the whistle blow. The occasional hoot, growl or even roar is also part of our daily life here atWhipsnade. It certainly adds to the local colour and is a real novelty for our residents.” Whipsnade Park Homes has been established for over 70 years by the family of the Park Owner Gill Ponsford. Gill’s Grandfather originally started the business to cater to touring visitors when Whipsnade Zoo first opened next door to his farm. In later years the park’s licence was changed permanently to residential use.

OVER FIFTIES
Whipsnade Park has been much improved over the years and now boasts 102 residential homes. All of the homes are connected to mains electricity, water and sewage. Residents make their own arrangements for oil or gas heating. The park is exclusively for the over 50s but there are often families and grandchildren visiting and the park community is a friendly and welcoming one. “Whipsnade is a lovely community full of like-minded people,” says Cheryl. “All of our residents have embraced the benefits of park home living. In downsizing and releasing equity from their previous homes, they are able to still maintain a very high standard of living. Most of the park homes have individual gardens and parking, and some owners also rent garages close to their property. Many homes offer lovely views over local farmland.” Whipsnade Park is well landscaped to reflect its beautiful natural setting in the Bedfordshire countryside. The park is nestled in the stunning Dunstable Downs, part of the Chiltern Hills, where residents enjoy scenic walks, several golf courses and a nearby gliding club. The park is located on the outskirts of the village ofWhipsnade, which contains a beautiful church, a traditional country pub, and a thriving village hall and social club, which in ‘normal times’ attracts the park residents to its many events and activities.

RESIDENTS OF THE PARK enjoy the sights and sounds of Whipsnade Zoo’s residents on a daily basis. Photo - ZSL Whipsnade Zoo © ZSL

TREE CATHEDRAL
The historic Whipsnade Tree Cathedral – trees, hedges and shrubs planted in the form of a medieval cathedral after the First World War - is just ten minutes’ walk from the park. Another National Trust property, the 5000-acre Ashridge Estate and its famous bluebell woods, is also a nearby attraction, popular with residents and their visitors. “Our lovely countryside setting is one of the biggest draws for prospective owners,” explains Gill. “It’s hard to believe that the bustling town of Dunstable is just three miles away. A lot of our residents take advantage of the bus service from the park entrance to nearby Hemel Hempstead, Luton and Dunstable. It’s possible to reach London by train in around 30 minutes. Our park really offers the best of countryside living with access to all amenities.” Whipsnade Park residents benefit from a wealth of high quality home choice. The Park features a selection of homes from leading manufacturers such as Omar, Tingdene, Prestige and Stately-Albion. There is presently a brand new Tingdene Hayden Classic (double bedroom) just about to be released onto the market, and plans are already in development for a further two new homes this year. The park continues to be 95% full, with around 150 residents in full time occupancy throughout the year - a positive outcome considering the challenges of trading in any business during the last 12 months. “We feel very lucky to have weathered the storm of the Pandemic and not been too badly affected,” says Gill. “Inevitably there’s been a bit of a slowing down in the property market. For us, it’s prevented the over 50s from visiting the park to view any potential new homes.We’ve invested more in our website and marketing materials accordingly but there’s no substitute for being able to see the park first- hand.We are now looking forward to welcoming visitors again and showing prospective residents the advantages of joining our lovely community.”

THE NEW TINGDENE HAYDEN CLASSIC which is about to be released onto the market

BRIGHT SIDE
Unexpectedly, the Covid Pandemic has resulted in some more welcome benefits too. Residents ofWhipsnade Park Homes have benefitted from the setting up of a good neighbours’ scheme known locally as SKaW, which covers all those who live in the three surrounding villages of Studham, Kensworth and Whipsnade. The scheme offers lonely and vulnerable people assistance with grocery shopping, medical transport, prescription collection and other necessary activities. “Although the park didn’t set up the scheme, SKaW has been a valuable resource for some of our elderly residents,” shares Cheryl, who herself volunteered as a helper last year. “In many ways, park home living has proved to be the perfect environment for lockdown,” adds Gill. “It offers a ready-made self-contained community with plenty of support.” “It’s heart-warming to see how the community as a whole has been brought a lot closer together as a result of this year’s difficult events. It just goes to show that positive things can come out of even the hardest circumstances. As the situation improves nationally, at Whipsnade Park Homes we will be continuing to support our residents, whilst keeping those stronger community ties and values close to home.”

Whipsnade Park Homes
Tel. 01582 873 119
www.whipsnadeparkhomes.co.uk

THE BUSINESS WAS ORIGINALLY CREATED as a touring park for visitors to Whipsnade Zoo which is next door.

BLANK CANVAS

BLANK CANVAS

York House Leisure expands into the residential park sector...

With a solid background in owning and operating award-winning holiday parks in picturesque North Yorkshire, it was just a matter of time before York House Leisure expanded into the residential park sector. Now, this family-run business is launching its most ambitious development so far –Gateforth Park -- a large, luxury park home community on a 45-acre site, just minutes from the popular market town of Selby in the Vale of York. “My family had been looking for the right ‘blank canvas’ for many years,” reveals York House Leisure Co-Director, Phil Brierley. “York House Leisure was established in 1965 as a holiday park business, but we’ve grown naturally over the years into the residential market. “We were keen to further expand and offer something different when, four years ago, a chance meeting led to our discovery of the site at Gateforth.”

VANDALISED SITE

Phil says that looking at Gateforth Park today, with Phase One of its luxury development well underway, it’s hard to believe that this former mushroom farm site had stood derelict for a decade and was a regular target for vandalism, arson and fly tipping. Fortunately, York House Leisure Directors Phil and his brother Tim had the industry experience to see past Gateforth’s appearance as a dilapidated brownfield site and recognise its potential. York House Leisure purchased the site in August 2018 and drew up plans for a three phase re-development that would completely transform the neglected 45-acre site into a spacious park home development of 168 well-appointed homes. “We felt that Gateforth Park could be transformed into something really special,” says Phil. “Our vision from the start was to develop the highest quality residential park that offered the very best in over 50s living. And with planning permission awarded unanimously by the local District Council in January 2019, the hard work really began!” The development at Gateforth is situated next door to Selby Golf Club and makes the most of its attractive countryside surroundings, as well as excellent road and rail links to some of the area’s top leisure destinations. When complete, the park will include a fishing lake, community centre, woodland and recreational areas. The lake will be surrounded by homes, giving relaxing views of the water and the wildlife. York House Leisure’s four holiday parks – York House, Old Hall, Swaleside and Abbot’s Green – already hold David Bellamy Gold Awards for conservation, and the plan is to develop a similar scheme at Gateforth Park.

CUTTING TEETH

FROM LEFT TO RIGHT, in front of the new Majestic 42x20 at Gateforth Park - Phil Brierley of York House Leisure, Silvano Geranio & Andrew Westwood of Prestige Homeseeker, and Dawn Hughes of Gateforth Park.

The York House Leisure team cut their residential park teeth on Quarry Moor and New Park, a 92 plot, traditional style park that has been in the family since the early 1980s. The park is popular with over 50s wishing to downsize within a small, friendly community that offers easy access to the area’s considerable attractions. The two side-by-side developments are situated on the outskirts of the historic cathedral city of Ripon, home to the World Heritage Site of Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Gardens, and a short drive from Harrogate and further afield, York. Quarry Moor and New Park is typical of the York House Leisure Park ethos. Phil says that they “aim to offer immaculately maintained parks, which offer quiet, private space with all the benefits of a real community.” “It might be traditional in style, but this park has been carefully developed over many years and is now filled with greenery and wildlife throughout the year,” explains Phil. “Each plot is set back from the main driveway, giving residents additional space and privacy that is a key selling point for re-sale of the homes there.” With a portfolio of successful parks, the York House Leisure team of 20 (35 in peak season) are happiest when looking after their customers, the majority of which are holiday home owners.

Flagship holiday park, York House, has won a raft of accolades including a Visit Britain 5 Star Award for Tourism, Hoseasons Diamond Finalist Award for Customer Service, and it was selected as a Finalist in the White Rose Awards 2019. With a bit of luck – and customary hard work – Gateforth Park will attract similar success. Fifty park home bases and eight show homes from Prestige Homeseeker Park and Leisure Homes are now in position at Gateforth as part of Phase One of the development. Already, the park has 10 reservations, which has exceeded expectations at this early stage, especially considering the challenges of operating over recent months. “What a difference a year makes!” says Phil, smiling. “We didn’t start redeveloping Gateforth until last August and we recycled many thousands of tonnes of concrete and demolished several huge industrial buildings on site. Not to mention the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic! But, all credit to our team, we are well on track with Phase One of the park and we couldn’t be more excited to start welcoming our first residents to Gateforth later this year.”

 

 

One Stop Ideas Shop

One Stop Ideas Shop

One Stop Ideas ShopIf you are searching for the latest design ideas as part of your continuous accommodation upgrades, or a choice of holiday park services, the World of Park and Leisure Homes has a solution for you. The show plays host to multiple park home providers, aiming to give owners and operators a unique opportunity to spend quality time with the manufacturers, viewing new models and other homes on display and considering new concepts and designs. But accommodation is only part of the event appeal. There are a plethora of suppliers of services and products from finance and security to insurance and electrics, all keen to meet with existing and potential new customers. Cutting out the travel for many south of England operators, the South of England Showground, at Ardingley, was the location for the April event; the first of two shows. Highlights included a floating mobile home by The Floating Lodges Company and a Gypsy Caravan by Erpingham Lodges. With free parking and entry to the event, the next World of Park and Leisure Homes Show will take place next month at the Stoneleigh showground. The trade-only day is Thursday June 6th while the public will also have access from June 7th to 9th.

Second Date For Park Show Team

Second Date For Park Show Team

Second Date For Park Show TeamThe World of Park & Leisure Homes show team has added a second date and venue to its successful event concept, with a spring show at the South of England Showground in Ardingly. The World of Park & Leisure Homes provides park owners and operators a comprehensive shop window experience, with a massive collection of leisure lodges and park homes on display and the chance to discuss your particular requirements and options in privacy and comfort. Save the date for the Trade Preview Day on Thursday 11th April 2019 with the South of England event open to the general public from Friday to Sunday, 12th -14th. Meanwhile, the World Of Park & Leisure Homes will return in the summer, to its more familiar Stoneleigh venue, from June – 9th.

World Of Park & Leisure Homes
Tel. 01789 491451
www.parkandleisurehomeshows.co.uk

 

Royal Roots

Royal Roots - Warfield Park

royal roots main picAscot, Sunninghill, Wentworth… this leafy corner of Berkshire boasts some of the most picturesque countryside and expensive real estate in Britain but it is also home to one of the longest established park home estates in the country, Warfield Park. Few people today, wandering through Warfield Park’s scenic rural parkland dotted with modern park homes, could imagine the colourful history of the park on the outskirts of Bracknell. First established in Tudor times, the land was formerly part of Windsor Great Park, welcoming Kings, Queens and illustrious figures from history over the centuries. The estate was sold to Archie MacLaren in 1939, and his son, Captain Ian MacLaren, subsequently set up Warfield as a residential caravan site in 1947. Today, Warfield Park is overseen by the MacLaren Trust and has evolved into one of the most desirable residential parks in the UK. The 92 acres of wooded parkland now feature 509 park homes on spacious plots that harmonise with the spectacular surroundings, with the majestic Wellingtonia trees planted by forroyal roots pic 3mer owner Lord Ormathwaite’s wife, Lady Jane Walsh, still in situ from the late 19th century. “Warfield Park’s philosophy has always been to site high quality homes sympathetically within the natural surroundings, and to preserve the environment for years to come,” explains Nikki Collas, Development and Projects Coordinator for Warfield Park. “We don’t believe in cramming in row after row of homes, and instead site them in a sylvan and non-linear fashion around winding roads and our magnificent trees.” 434 of the homes at Warfield Park are privately owned but according to Nikki, no two homes look the same because of the unique way the plots are sited on the park and the fact that new residents are encouraged to design bespoke homes. The team at Warfield work with a number of different manufacturers including Lissett Homes, Aspire Leisure & Park Homes, Prestige and Homeseeker, and Tingdene. Nikki says: “We are known for our plot sizes being significantly larger and more private than most other park home estates.

Most homes have gardens and garages. We also landscape the new gardens so they look nice before residents move in, and to keep with our theme of preserving the natural environment.” Apart from its history and setting, one of the most interesting features of Warfield Park is that its remaining 75 homes are rental properties, offered on 6 month Assured Shorthold Tenancies. Not surprisingly, in a location that can offer residents a short commute to London, demand for these rental homes is high. Many homes also attract families as this is one of the few parks to offer no lower age limit on ownership / rental and where children (and up to three well-behaved pets!) are also welcome. “Warfield Park invest heavily in our rental properties and the vast majority of our homes are new or fully refurbished,” explains Nikki. “This prolongs the life of our homes, improves comfort, and reduces energy prices for the tenants. We are proud that we do not have a boiler older than 5 years old in any of our rental properties, many ofwhich also have improved thermal insulation and a multi-layer render coating or low maintenance wall covering (Canexel cladding), which complies with British Standard 3632.” Warfield Park has won many accolades including the Social Responsibility Award in the National Energy Efficiency and Healthy Homes Awards in 2017. Homes are covered under GoldShield warranties and the park is a member of the BH&HPA.

Home to approximately 900 residents, Warfield Park is a thriving, multi-generational community with its own Community Hall, Hairdressers, Beauty Salon aroyal roots pic 8nd coin-operated Launderette. An active Community Association host a number of social, music and fitness classes in the hall daily, as well as regular weekend socials. A team of 18 staff is employed on site: 10 are office based and eight take responsibility for the extensive grounds outside. Warfield Park management and staff, led by Managing Director Barry Sumner, are committed to ensuring the park runs in tip-top condition and that the residents are happy in their homes. “We feel very strongly that it is important to have an open dialogue with our residents so they can voice ideas for improvements or amendments to the way we work,” says Nikki. “We hold bi-monthly Park Assembly meetings in the Community Hall to find out what the residents think we do well and what we can improve upon.” In 2018, Warfield Park saw a huge number of developments including electrical improvement works, several new homes, extended visitor parking, a redecoration of the Community Hall, and the laying of 7.6km of pipework for the supply of mains natural gas, which was completed just in time for Christmas 2018.

In collaboration with Affordable Warmth Solutions (AWS) and T & K Gallagher the new infrastructure was undertaken at zero cost to residents and should mean significantly less costs for them once the roll-out of boiler conversion carried out by Happy Energy is finished this Spring. Warfield Park has also recently undergone a complete re-brand with an attractive new logo and company website to appeal to potential new clients on the horizon. The team were delighted to finally receive planning permission in September 2017 for an extension that will mean 82 new homes. “Everyone at Warfield Park is very excited about the expansion,” says Nikki, “and we will be spending time working through more detailed plans during this year. We really want to replicate the character of the existing park in the new extension and preserving our heritage and outdoor space will continue to be top priority as we take Warfield Park into the future.”