GREEN TRAILBLAZERS

GREEN TRAILBLAZERS

Investment in eco tourism continues to thrive...

EACH LODGE OFFERS PRIVACY while maintaining proximity to the resort’s central facilities.

The David Bellamy Blooming Marvellous Pledge for Nature works in partnership with over 500 holiday parks in the UK. Pioneered over 28 years ago by botanist and TV personality David Bellamy, the scheme is now administered by his son Rufus, who is himself an Environmental Adviser, working closely with parks of all sizes.

The organisation has singled out Parkdean Resorts for special praise thanks to their commitment to the environment and its responsible stewardship of over 3,500 acres of land at its 66 sites. Parkdean Resorts was described this month as ‘a green trailblazer’ for kickstarting work that will provide wildlife and the natural world with the same warm welcome as its holiday guests.

Scheme co-ordinator Rufus Bellamy said Parkdean Resorts deserved major recognition for mobilising a raft of exciting and imaginative environmental projects across its parks this year. Once they are completed, said Rufus, the work will not just benefit nature, but will also help provide an enjoyable and educative experience for guests, and for youngsters in particular.

Making new wildlife discoveries, he said, was just one of the ways in which Parkdean Resorts was helping to create magical memories for the 3.5 million guests it welcomes each year. The group’s parks have all taken the David Bellamy Pledge for Nature which commits them to managing their green spaces with wildlife in mind and undertaking at least one significant wildlife project over the next year.

These include setting up bird boxes and other artificial habitats, creating areas where bees, butterflies and other pollinating insects can get food, focusing on the conservation of a specific species, and working to enhance ponds and other wetland habitats.

INTERPRETED NATURE TRAILS encourage all family members to make wildlife discoveries in the park’s grounds.

CONSERVATION GOALS
Parks taking the Pledge receive visits from independent wildlife assessors who provide advice on new projects to be undertaken, and the steps needed to accomplish their nature conservation goals.

Responsible at Parkdean Resorts for steering the scheme is the group’s Regional Director of Scotland Colin Pearse, and he said park managers play an important part in delivering the results: “Our managers are given a great deal of autonomy in deciding what conservation projects will best suit their park, and then involving team members in making it a reality,” said Colin.

“This is crucial as our parks are located in different and very beautiful coastal and countryside locations throughout Britain, each with its own individual character and natural assets. “We ask each manager to propose a project and explain the ways in which it will enhance the guest experience, and then it’s up to them with help from members of their team.

“There’s never any shortage of volunteers coming forward, not least because it’s very satisfying to know that you are making a real difference to safeguarding wildlife and the natural world. “We receive tremendous support from the scheme’s advisers who are always willing to go the extra mile in providing both encouragement and expert guidance,” added Colin.

Rufus Bellamy said that Parkdean Resorts had become national cheerleaders for the scheme, and its parks were role models for how tourism businesses could work as a group to help nature.

 

CHEERS LEADERS
Just as importantly, he said, Parkdean Resorts was encouraging millions of holiday guests each year to discover more about the natural world, and the part they can play in its conservation. Mythtopia is an eco-glamping resort situated just outside of Edinburgh that is due to open in Spring 2024. The resort is designed to be 100% sustainable, carbon-negative, and powered entirely by natural energy sources, such as solar and wind energy.

To help in its rewilding efforts, Mythtopia is also leveraging its own cryptocurrency funded by carbon credits, as part of its mission to plant 120,000 trees on the site itself. Its founder, Oliver Pyle-Santini, was inspired to create a flourishing and environmentally-conscious business that would provide a wealth of jobs to the local community, and safeguard the natural surroundings of the estate.

The luxury glamping resort will feature many activities from yoga to silent discos but the most unique is ‘Legends’; an augmented reality game based on Celtic mythology and folklore aimed at families, couples and gamers alike. Situated among 200 acres of preserved green land and located just 20 minutes from the Scottish capital, Mythtopia is the ideal place for families to experience nature while embarking on an immersive AR adventure.

MYTHTOPIA OFFERS ITS GUESTS a unique immersive AR experience based on ancient Celtic mythology

Mythtopia will also be the UK’s first holiday destination exclusive to NFT token holders. Mythtopia will feature 150 low- carbon impact geometric domes and lodges, along with a restaurant, clubhouse, bar, and spa. Each guest will receive access to a wealth of activities including a geofenced augmented reality playground based on ancient Celtic mythology called ‘Mythtopia Legends’.

The game allows players to explore the natural woodland environment while following a spellbinding story of mythical creatures. Participants can build their own AR character, interact with talking trees and dwarves, and go on mystical missions alongside the characters of their friends and family.

Using Celtic legends, this unique AR experience will create a ‘digital theme park’ perfect for families, couples, gamers, and LARPers. Guests can also get involved in a wide variety of other activities to help them enjoy the natural world with opportunities for open water swimming in its own lake, stargazing, horse riding, yoga classes, and silent disco parties.

ECO-VISITORS will help plant over 120,000 trees by visiting Mythtopia, a carbon-negative retreat.

GREEN INVESTMENT
Tregoad Holiday Park in Looe, Cornwall, celebrated the completion of a raft new developments this summer by opening its doors to members of the local community. Representing an investment of £2.5 million, the initiatives were focused on sustainability, and the introduction of new ways to protect the natural world.

The family-owned park, part of the four-strong Waterside group, chose a Saturday in July to showcase its achievements to guests which included members of the public, senior local authority and VisitCornwall representatives, and Tregoad’s local suppliers. New features include the creation of Cornwall’s largest wildflower meadow bank covering more than 3,000 square metres, and seeded with high pollen-bearing plants.

Nectar produced by the blooms, says the park, will provide a valuable foraging resource for honey bees, butterflies, and other important pollinators. In addition, the park has invested £300,000 in planting hundreds of indigenous plants, trees and shrubs, and installed a range of new wildlife habitats.

The living quarters installed throughout the park’s grounds include three traditional beehives, duck houses, plus bird and bat boxes made from recycled materials This year, the park is also spending £36,000 on upgrading its popular wildlife walk. The move will add an additional 2km to its length, allowing guests to explore even more of the park’s rich and varied landscape, and to uncover its wildlife secrets.

Matt Way, General Manager at Tregoad Holiday Park, said: “An important part of our guests’ experience is enjoying our wildlife, beautiful lakes, and woodland walks. We believe we have a responsibility to nurture and enhance our natural surroundings, helping Cornwall’s natural environment to thrive and contribute to a greener future.

PARKDEAN RESORTS’ many accommodation options include lodges located in tranquil wooded surroundings.

“As well as focusing on wildlife and planting, we’ve been assessing everything that we do at Tregoad to ensure we’re operating as sustainably as possible. “For example, we’ve introduced a new waste-water treatment facility to allow the park to be self-sufficient, installed water refill taps, and reused construction materials across the site, such as our former toilet blocks which have been crushed and reused as road infill. We’re also continuing to work with Climate Vision to identify more ways in which we can reduce our carbon footprint.”

Tregoad Holiday Park works with more than 50 local suppliers, including Flotsam Flo which creates fashion accessories from waste which is difficult to recycle. Items are taken in, including old wetsuits, which are then upcycled by Flotsam Flo to be sold in its shop. The park is the first holiday park in the UK to go ‘full cycle’ in recycling, upcycling, and redistributing in such a manner.

Through partnership with a specialist upcycler of wet suits, inflatables and plastics, the park is aiming to reduce its landfill by a further 10% this year – after diverting 80 tonnes of waste from going to landfill between 2022 and 2023 through switching to alternative waste companies. Matt continued: “Collaboration is key to helping us tackle climate change. We’re proud to be working with like-minded businesses which champion sustainability and consider their environmental impact when planning their future investment and areas of growth.

“Our sustainability efforts complement our wider enhancement works at Tregoad. Over the past two years, we’ve introduced 100 new high-quality holiday homes and invested more than £500,000 in improving our guest facilities. Matt adds: “Our holiday accommodation and facility improvements, alongside our sustainability initiatives, are helping us achieve our core objective of delivering an exceptional quality holiday experience.”

INVESTMENT IN STAFF WELLBEING

INVESTMENT IN STAFF WELLBEING

PARKDEAN RESORTS has partnered with the British Foundation to offer free heart health checks for its staff.

Parkdean Resorts, the UK’s leading holiday park operator, has partnered with the British Heart Foundation to conduct free heart health checks for hundreds of team members.

To mark National Cholesterol Month, which ran throughout October, the free on-site health checks will be offered to any members of Parkdean Resorts’ Maintenance and Accommodation teams aged 40 or older. The checks will benefit up to 520 full-time and seasonal team members across the company’s 66 award-winning holiday parks.

The 15-minute sessions will check blood pressure, cholesterol, glucose, body mass index and waist circumference, and from this, the Practitioners will provide advice to individuals about what they can do to improve their physical health. Staff will also be shown how to access self-help through the company health and wellbeing platform.

HEALTH DATA
The British Heart Foundation will then provide Parkdean Resorts with a company wellbeing aggregated report showing the health data of its teams, allowing the company to create an action plan to put further measures in place in the future to help improve the health and wellbeing of its teams.

Lisa Charles-Jones, HR Director, Parkdean Resorts, said: “We know it can sometimes be difficult to get an appointment at the doctor’s surgery, and that life can get in the way of booking an appointment for health checks. We are dedicated to caring for our Parks, People and Planet and supporting team wellbeing is one of our key people commitments, so we’re delighted to be able to partner with the British Heart Foundation to deliver these vitally important heart health checks.”

Parkdean Resorts is dedicated to finding new ways to increase wellbeing for team members and their families in local communities. In 2022, the company introduced health checks and discounted gym memberships, 30-minute lunchtime walks on ‘walking Wednesdays’, free flu vaccinations, and support for National Cycle to Work Day.

As a further source of support, the team can access Parkdean Resorts’ Employee Assistance Programme 24/7 – a free and confidential telephone line offering practical solutions, information, and support from external trained professionals.

LET US ENTERTAIN YOU!

LET US ENTERTAIN YOU!

The vibrant mix of holiday destination talent...

BUTLIN’S BIG WEEKENDERS, exclusively for adults, has a brand-new break for 2023, We Call It Dance.

Holiday entertainment has significantly evolved from the first Redcoats of the 1930 and the Hi de Hi era of the Sixties. Operators of parks, large and small, still agree that getting the entertainment mix right remains crucial to ensure happy, satisfied customers. While holiday parks continue to evolve and offer modern amenities, depending on the target market, the traditional camp host still has a place.

Their expertise, personal touch, and ability to create a sense of community contribute to the overall experience and can make a holiday park stay even more enjoyable. These days, holiday destinations are constantly raising the bar by offering a diverse range of entertainment options to cater to different age groups and interests.

A mix of live shows, musical performances, themed events, and interactive experiences all aim to engage visitors. Holiday parks typically manage their entertainment offerings through a combination of planning, coordination, and collaboration.

 

• Entertainment Programming: Design a varied programme that caters to different age groups and interests, including live performances, themed events, sports tournaments, and workshops.

• Talent Booking: While considering the preferences and demographics of guests, working with external performers or talent agencies can be a cost-efficient way of securing talent such as musicians, magicians, dancers, and comedians.

• Activity Scheduling: The entertainment team creates a schedule for activities, ensuring a good balance throughout the day. This helps guests plan their participation and prevents overlapping events.

• Facilities and Venues: Dedicated spaces for entertainment may include theatres, outdoor stages, sports courts, and activity rooms. These areas are equipped with appropriate sound systems, lighting, and seating arrangements to enhance the overall experience.

• Key Personnel: Trained staff members including entertainers, activity coordinators, and event managers, are employed to execute the entertainment programme. They oversee the smooth operation of events, interact with guests, and ensure everyone’s enjoyment and safety.

• Guest Feedback: Collecting client feedback through surveys, suggestion boxes, or online platforms.

This helps them understand preferences, identify areas for improvement, and make necessary adjustments to future programs. No better example of holiday destination entertainment than Butlins with its wide range of shows, live performances, and activities suitable for all ages. The resorts often feature popular acts, live music, and themed events, ensuring a vibrant atmosphere.

THE EVOLUTION OF UK HOLIDAY destination entertainment has resulted in a more inclusive and engaging experience for visitors. Pic. Fowlers

BIG WEEKENDERS
Ranging from genre specific breaks like the new We Call It Dance weekender to popular decade breaks, 2023 will see 16 different Big Weekenders – all for adults only. There are also some new, big-name artists performing at Butlin’s for the first time. Continuing with the dance theme, Tom Zanetti, Route 94 and Lovely Laura and Ben Santiago are all new acts playing the We Love Ibiza weekender.

Sophie Ellis-Bextor is other new headliner performing on Back To The 2000s and Replay Weekenders. Mike Godolphin, Entertainment Director at Butlin’s, said: “We’re thrilled to be introducing a new dance weekender featuring some of the biggest names in the industry. “We Call It Dance is a brilliant opportunity to get your mates together and enjoy an unforgettable three nights of house, disco, garage and much more.

We can’t wait to see everyone on the dancefloor in Skegness later this year.” With the tagline ‘the Home of Entertainment’, Butlin’s is continually redefining what entertainment is, could and should be. The holiday park chain is opening a brand-new indoor activity centre, PLAYXPERIENCE, at its Bognor Regis resort.

Described as “an immersive indoor hub”, this new £15million space will feature a variety of experiences all under one roof. Covering nearly 50,000 square feet, each room will be filled with adrenaline-pumping activities in the daytime and competitive, interactive bar games in the evening.

HOLIDAY DESTINATIONS like Park Holidays UK continue to invest in the quality on-site entertainment.

BIG SPENDERS
In 2022 Parkdean Resorts announced a £140 million spend nationwide at its parks as part of its biggest ever investment programme. The investment went towards new accommodation, new and upgraded activities and facilities, and installing park-wide Wi-Fi capability.

The investment also allowed Parkdean to continue to roll out its hugely popular brand partnerships, with Bear Grylls’ Survival Academy, Tots’ Breaks, and events and entertainment from Milkshake and Nickelodeon now available at more parks than ever.

Steve Richards, Chief Executive of Parkdean Resorts tells us: “By investing in our parks, we’re not only improving the guest experience, but we’re also ensuring that holidaymakers keep coming back year after year, spending money in local shops, attractions, pubs and restaurants, and supporting the communities that rely so heavily on tourism.”

The entertainment and activity offering at holiday operator Away Resorts is unique to each park. Across the portfolio there is everything from archery to line dancing, laser tag, axe throwing and zorbing, to alpaca walks and yoga, arts and crafts, bug hunts. fishing and cycle hire.

There are also traditional character shows, breakfasts and meet-and- greets with the likes of Bear, Scratch and Lucy. Sammi Storey, Entertainment Manager at Sandy Balls says “[Bear’s] so real, and it’s so rewarding seeing all the kid’s smiles!”

PROVIDING DIVERSE ENTERTAINMENT options will cater to different preferences and age groups.

 

CUSTARD PIE
Creative Director Max Barraclough is proud of what Away Resorts has achieved: “My team thrives on building unique experiences our customers will remember forever,” he says. “Our Custard Pie and Colour Festival events are now famous, with guests coming back time and time again for them.

“Our mini festivals get customers singing, dancing and really letting go. We Live Stream many events now, so no matter which park you’re staying at you can enjoy the full Away Resorts experience. We like to think the attention to detail in all our entertainment shines through.”

The entertainment offering is big – and growing - at all the parks. A good example of this family together festival, Famaland. New for 2023, it will take place at Tattershall Lakes between 21st July –2nd September and bring together epic headline shows, mini versions of its well-loved festivals including Dinoworld, Colour Throws and Custard Pie Fights, as well as some brilliant family favourite character appearances.

“All our most popular events together each week,” says the creative team behind it. Whether seeking adrenaline-pumping adventures, enchanting live performances, or a tranquil retreat surrounded by nature, the evolution of UK holiday destination entertainment has resulted in a more inclusive and engaging experience for visitors, with a focus on providing diverse entertainment options that cater to different preferences and age groups.

PARKDEAN CONFIRMS £144M INVESTMENT

PARKDEAN CONFIRMS £144M INVESTMENT


The UK’s largest holiday park operator, Parkdean Resorts, has confirmed £140 million is being spent nationwide at its parks as part of its biggest ever investment programme. The investment will go towards new accommodation, new and upgraded activities and facilities, and installing park-wide Wi-Fi capability, which will further improve the guest experience in 2022.

Parkdean Resorts operates 66 parks across the UK, and with advance bookings at record levels, the award winning company expects even more holidaymakers for 2022. The parks are now hiring for seasonal and full-time roles across sales, food and beverage, and housekeeping. Nationwide, the £140m investment includes over 850 new caravans and lodges, new developments at 16 parks, and hundreds of refreshed and upgraded chalets and lodges with a brand-new look. More than £13m has been invested in the company’s ‘Parks of the Future’ initiative.

Three parks, Newquay in Cornwall, Southview in Skegness, and Naze Marine, in Walton-on-the-Naze, Essex, will benefit from a whole host of exciting new activities and upgraded facilities as well as upgraded and brand new accommodation options, while Trecco Bay, Europe’s largest holiday park, will be bigger and better than ever after a further round of enhancements. The investment in these sites takes the total number of ‘Parks of the Future’ to ten, as Parkdean continues to invest in taking its parks to the next level.

BUSINESS LEADERSHIP PROGRAMME

BUSINESS LEADERSHIP PROGRAMME

 

THE FIRST OF ITS KIND in the holiday park sector, Parkdean Resorts has launched a bespoke talent development programme.

Parkdean Resorts, the UK’s leading holiday park operator, has partnered with Cranfeld Executive Development, to provide Parkdean Resorts personnel with elite leadership and management training.
The bespoke talent development programme, the first of its kind in the holiday park sector, is aimed at unlocking the development potential of leading talent in the business. The two-year course is available for selected candidates and represents a £30,000 investment per participant.
The delegates will at first enrol and complete Cranfeld’s Breakthrough Leadership Programme. After successfully completing this programme, each delegate will select a further development course for the second year, which will be more specific to their needs and skill-gaps.
The cohort that will begin the course in 2021 is made up of seven senior managers across the business that have been earmarked as future leaders of the business and includes one employee who began their career at Parkdean Resorts working as a lifeguard and has since worked their way up to their current role. Upon completion, all delegates will be awarded the CEOs ‘One to watch’ award.

PEOPLE POWER

PEOPLE POWER

WE MAY SEE PEOPLE from other sectors making the move into our industry

The effects of the pandemic on staff retention and employment…

It would be fair to say that staff retention has been a hot topic over recent months, in light of COVID-19 implecations, writes Sue Hollingshead. As we entered Lockdown in March, it was naturally a difficult time for everyone and also an unknown entity. Staff being furloughed, not being able to physically go to work, not being able to go anywhere for that matter, created a scenario that was totally new to us all. Holiday Park Scene has been researching how it affected employers within the holiday park sector and we have been pleasantly surprised by the positivity. Lisa Charles-Jones, HR Director from Parkdean Resorts reflects: “The response of our teams was fantastic. For example, we were first forced to close just before Easter, and rather than all our fresh food and drink going to waste, teams decided to donate to local foodbanks in their communities. “We also worked with the NHS to provide accommodation for key workers at four of our parks, which was our own small way of saying thank you,” says Lisa. “We were fortunate that we were able to keep hold of all our staff under the furlough scheme, and each park had regular online socials to check in on everybody and maintain the family spirit that is so important for our teams.”

FURLOUGH SCHEMES

Danielle Lasky, Head of People Operations at Away Resorts shared how their teams faired: “COVID-19 has made our team stronger than ever and the spirit that has been shown from our team members during Lockdown has been incredible! “We used our internal social media platform to engage with our team members while they actively took the initiative to pioneer some of their own engagement events – interactive quizzes, bingo, comedy nights. “It was uplifting to see how much creativity there was across the business. We were really keen to keep the lines of communication open and our CEO, Carl Castledine, very much led from the front. “At the height of Lockdown Carl was providing three recorded updates a week to all team members, ensuring teams were fully informed as to what movements there were across the business but also providing some well needed reassurance in what was such an uncertain, vulnerable time for all.” The approach by Parkdean Resorts and Away Resorts is refreshing, it was also a framework adopted by many companies throughout the country. A key part of retaining staff revolves around investing in their mental wellbeing, whether this is to support them in their role, tipping into their personal life, financial or otherwise. The true results of how companies have handled and supported their staff during Lockdown will be evident post- Lockdown. Danielle said: “We could not be prouder of how our team have adopted the new safe ways of working. “The hospitality and leisure industry can often be very demanding and the added need for protective equipment has made the demands on these roles higher – but our team have seamlessly taken on the challenge and excelled. It was such a great feeling to open our doors and welcome the team back when reopening on 4th July.” We are lucky to be in a buoyant market, with the Staycation having taken off massively as we were able to start travelling again. Parkdean reported huge demand and were able to bring back all of their staff from furlough and in fact hired a further 1,500 seasonal workers across the country to cope with the demand. A trend which we have seen throughout the market with its strength continuing to grow.

BIGGEST MISTAKES

With his experience in recruitment, Jim Gandon, Managing Director of Annesley Gandon, for offered valuable advice: “Recruiting is sometimes the easy bit, retaining them can be the challenge.When it comes to recruitment, the biggest mistake we see is the lack of due diligence undertaken,” he said. “Candidates can look great on paper, but we can all write a CV that looks good. The key is a good track record and previous performance.” Jim advises when interviewing always ask for specific examples of things that have gone well, this doesn’t always relate to financial it could be systems and processes put in place. If they are good, then they should have a few examples of these. “Always take references and ensure that they have worked at the places they say they have, ask for their last two previous employers as a reference. If they have an excuse why you shouldn’t talk to them then that should be a cause for concern.” Retaining a team is one of the biggest issues we come up against, Jim continues: “As an employer, we should be creating an environment that is a pleasure to work in. Believe it or not we still come across employers that think it is the employees’ privilege to work for them and they should be thankful!

PARKDEAN HIRED a further 1,500 seasonal workers across the country to cope with the demand.

EXTRA REVENUE

“We have put together teams that have made companies millions in extra revenue,” Jim says. “This has all been about the right people, in the right place, within a positive environment. For the most part recognition is the biggest driver for most people, small gestures like a thank you or a team night out goes a long way. “Yes, there are lots of employee benefit schemes around, but the simple things are the most important.” The next step, as advised by Jim, is to ensure that a new employee has the right level of induction and introduction into the company. This was endorsed also by Lisa and Danielle, and clearly a vital part of the process. Setting goals, targets, and review dates may seem unnecessary to the employer when employing someone they feel will be a perfect for the role, however the employee will flourish from having the guidelines and clarification of the employers’ expectations. So, what thoughts for post- Lockdown and the immediate future, we wonder. Jim commented: “The strength of the market is almost as unprecedented as the pandemic itself. “The appetite for the UK holidays and holiday home ownership post- Lockdown is like nothing I’ve ever seen in my 30 years in the industry.

THE TRUE RESULTS of how companies have handled and supported their staff during Lockdown will be evident post-Lockdown

JOB LOSSES

“The tougher side is where operators have realised they need to make redundancies, however there are also many opportunities for people as other companies grow.We have seen some very forward-thinking operators using this period of time to invest in their products and services for 2021.” Lisa agrees: “Unfortunately a lot of people have lost their jobs, but that could provide a great opportunity for sectors like ours which have been thriving over the past few months. “We’re always keen to recruit from a variety of professional backgrounds, and we may see people from other sectors making the move into our industry. “There was a fantastic level of co-operation across the sector as we all worked together to lobby the Government and local MPs. There’s no doubt that together, we’re stronger, and hopefully we’ll continue to collaborate together in the future.” Danielle concludes: “It has been such an unfortunate period watching so many people become vulnerable to redundancies, from a recruitment perspective it has infiltrated the market with some truly fantastic candidates! “We are continuing to grow as a business and have some amazing opportunities at all levels so I hope we can provide some stability for job seekers that have found themselves in an unfortunate circumstance this year.” Despite having had a challenging year which has affected Human Resource departments massively, there is clearly positivity for the holiday sector with some strong feedback, advice, and strength for future employment.

 

COMPANY CONTACTS
Annesley Gandon
Tel: 01223 843888
www.annesleygandon.co.uk

Away Resorts
Tel: 01442 817398
www.awayresorts.co.uk

Parkdean Resorts
Tel: 01912 560795
www.parkdeanresorts.co.uk

 

Parkdean To Deliver Parks Of The Future

Parkdean To Deliver Parks Of The Future

Parkdean Resorts, the UK’s largest holiday park operator, has published its 2019 results confirming revenue was up by 5%. The leading operator of holiday parks in the UK, Parkdean Resorts owns and operates 67 award-winning holiday parks nationwide in coastal locations and areas of natural beauty across the UK with a wide range of accommodation options including static caravans, lodges and glamping as well as touring and camping pitches.

The group, that has over 31,000 pitches will invest £80m in 2020 in a pilot ‘parks of the future’ initiative at four locations to create state-of-the-art amenities including accommodation, park facilities and kids’ activity-based entertainment such as the Bear Grylls Survival Academy. The company reveal holiday packages increased in sales by 6% year on year at 599,000 holidays of which 80% were short stay (less than four days) playing to the increasing trend for UK staycations.

On-park spend revenue grew by 6% year-on-year at on-site shops, concessions, restaurants, bars and arcades as well as swimming pools, gyms and other leisure facilities.

The business will sell approximately 4,300 caravans and lodges priced from £25,000 for an entry level caravan to £600,000 for a premium lodge, and everything in between. Steve Richards, Chief Executive of Parkdean Resorts, said: “Much progress has been made over the last year and it is fair reward for the passion and unrelenting desire our teams bring in delivering great holiday experiences for our customers. “The momentum achieved in 2019 has continued into the current year which has started strongly with 32% of summer capacity already sold as we take share in what is a growing and resilient market.”

A new senior management team is now in place with the appointment of Catherine Lynn (CCO), John McKenzie (MD Holiday Homes), Mos Shamel (COO), David Lodge (Property Director) and Lisa Charles-Jones as HRD.

ABOVE: Parkdean Resorts has unveiled an £80m investment programme

Parkdean Resorts Pledge £42 Million

Parkdean Resorts

Parkdean Resorts has invested £130 million in its parks since 2016

Parkdean Resorts Pledge £42 Million

Parkdean Resorts is to invest £42 million across its parks this year with a primary focus on new accommodation.
Following a record £50 million worth of investment last year, the 2018 roll out takes Parkdean Resorts’ investment total to £130 million since 2016. The business now has 72% double glazed and central heated caravans due to an increase of over 1,450 in the last three years. The company is spending £13 million on 800 new caravans to meet higher demand for holidays and ownership opportunities. In response to customer feedback, these models will include the introduction of more one and four-bedroom caravans – and particularly those with a higher specification. Features include en-suite bathrooms, new and upgraded entertainment units, spacious seating and homely touches to ensure a really enjoyable stay.
“This year our £42 million investment plans really show our commitment to continually developing our parks, and creating the best possible holidaymaker and owner experiences,” comments John Waterworth, chief executive at Parkdean Resorts.:“In 2018 we have a focus on bringing in new caravans and lodges to follow the growth in consumer demand. We also regularly collect guest feedback, and from this made the decision to introduce more one and four-bedroom models. “
NEW LODGES
Vauxhall in Great Yarmouth, one of the company’s biggest parks, has enjoyed an extensive replacement programme since its acquisition by Parkdean Resorts in 2016. The park will welcome 60 modern double glazed and centrally-heated models to upgrade the caravan offering on park. New lodges including a range of four-bedroom models are also set to be added to a variety of parks offering wider choice following a£1.3 million investment.
Nodes Point on the Isle of Wight is receiving 11 new lodges in a£0.75 million investment – six for holidaymakers and five for ownership opportunities. Meanwhile £0.52 million will bring four luxury lodges with hot tubs to the popular Fallbarrow Holiday Park in the Lake District. A further £3.9 million has been allocated to refurbishing existing accommodation to enhance holidaymakers’ experience. Additionally,upgrades to retail and leisure facilities will be completed for the 2018season, as well as extensions of touring and camping areas at key parks.
Says John: “As we look ahead to peak season, work is underway at the majority of our parks to boost their offering, making for an even more enjoyable time whilst staying with us. We hope this is well-received by our customers, and look forward to welcoming them throughout the course of the year.”

Record Investment

Record Investment

Parkdean Resorts’ ambitious investment will mean that the new facilities will be completed ahead of the 2017 travel season.

Parkdean Resorts’ ambitious investment will mean that the new facilities will be completed ahead of the 2017 travel season.

Parkdean Resorts is set to invest a record £50m on accommodation, retail and leisure facilities across its UK parks this year. The operator will be investing £17m into a range of new lodges, caravans and glamping facilities and £4m on refurbishments to existing caravans and lodges. Meanwhile, entertainment and leisure venues, and children’s activity areas will also be refurbished at many of its 73 parks nationwide as part of a significant investment exceeding £5.5m.

The ambitious investment will mean that the new facilities will be completed ahead of the 2017 travel season. Parkdean Resorts Chief Executive John Waterworth said: “It is a truly exciting time for Parkdean Resorts as we gear up for the 2017 season where substantial investment will continue and for what we are confident will be our busiest year yet.

“We are looking forward to introducing these changes which will further enhance our park experience – allowing holidaymakers to create many more amazing memories with family and friends.”

Five Star Norfolk Park Under New Ownership

Five Star Norfolk Park Under New Ownership

Vauxhall Holiday Park in Great Yarmouth is the first acquisition for Parkdean Resorts since the merger.

Vauxhall Holiday Park in Great Yarmouth is the first acquisition for Parkdean Resorts since the merger.

Parkdean Resorts has snapped up a five-star resort in Norfolk in its first acquisition since the firm was formed following a significant merger of Parkdean and Park Resorts last November. The operator, which owns 72 holiday parks nationwide, has bought Vauxhall Holiday Park in Great Yarmouth for an undisclosed sum.

The park has been owned and developed by the Biss family since 1964 and welcomes in excess of 80,000 holidaymakers each year. The freehold park comprises 390 caravans and lodges, 48 apartments and 180 touring and camping pitches across 41 acres. It is well invested, with a substantial range of high quality retail and leisure facilities. John Waterworth, Chief Executive of Parkdean Resorts said: “This continues our long term buy and build strategy which has been successful in developing Parkdean Resorts into the sector leading business it is today. Vauxhall is a thriving and well-managed park that will fit perfectly into the Parkdean Resorts portfolio offering customers even broader choice in Norfolk alongside our other parks East Anglia.”

John also confirmed that Parkdean Resorts is confident of another successful year of growth, with holiday sales for the year 9% ahead of 2015: “The group has been acquisitive since its formation and we see further opportunities in this highly fragmented sector via both single parks and multi-site portfolios.”