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Best park in Britain!

Best park in Britain!One of the UK’s largest holiday park operators, Darwin Holiday and Leisure Resorts, is celebrating having just won a number of industry accolades.

Darwin’s Cheddar Woods Resort and Spa, located in Cheddar, Somerset, was named Best Park in Britain by industry stalwart Hoseasons at its recent annual awards.

Cheddar Woods also won in the Relax and Explore category for Devon, Dorset and Somerset. All in all, an outstanding achievement given that Cheddar Woods only opened in summer 2013, and this was the first year it was eligible to participate.  

Sister park Talacre Beach Holiday Home Park, located near Prestatyn, also won in the Relax and Explore category for Wales. Meanwhile, having been a runner up for a number of years, Sandymouth Holiday Home Park won the Family Fun category for Cornwall.

Lindsey Bamford, Managing Director of Darwin Holiday and Leisure Resorts, commented, ‘We’re thrilled that our parks have been recognised. We strive to offer our guests an outstanding holiday experience and winning awards based on customer feedback proves that we are achieving this.’

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EVIDENCE OF POOR PRACTICE NEEDED

Sonia McColl, who heads up the Justice Campaign, tells us that her local MP, Annette Brooke, has asked the Department for Communities and Local Government about the working group that Brandon Lewis MP said would be set up when he spoke during the ‘10% Commission’ debate on 30 October 2014. Mrs Brooke has specifically asked whether the 10% commission is likely to be included in that group’s schedule.

She was told that the subject can be raised but time is limited and it will probably be a matter of establishing that there is a case to investigate.

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WIN NEC SHOW TICKETS!

Omar HeritageThe Caravan, Camping & Motorhome Show returns to the Birmingham NEC next month 17 – 22 February and it’s packed with the leading luxury lodge and caravan holiday companies as well as many of the UK’s favourite park operators. The event represents the start of the 2015 holiday season so if you’re looking to find inspiration for your new-year vacation then this is the best place to start. Ray Mears, Sally Gunnell and Matt Baker will all be there and here is just a flavour of what else is in store for show visitors.

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Moving on up!

jannews5A caravan and motorhome supplier is making plans for new areas of growth, thanks to Yorkshire Bank. Stewart Longton Caravans, established in 1971, has been in the Hall family for four generations. It recently agreed a £250,000 funding arrangement with the bank to facilitate the restructure of family shareholdings and to back the business as it looks towards its latest phase of expansion.

The business is run by Gary, Stephen and Peter Hall and employs a staff of 65. It operates four branches in the region: two in Chorley, one of which specialises in the sale of motorhomes; as well as a site in Standish and another in Lancaster. Stewart Longton Caravans is a major dealer for Sterling, Swift, Sprite and Bailey caravans as well as Bessacarr and Swift motorhomes.

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HIGH-SPEED WI-FI AT SUFFOLK PARK

HIGH-SPEED WI-FI AT SUFFOLK PARKLuxury residential and holiday park home operator the Lifestyle Living Group is installing high-speed internet lines with wi-fi connectivity at Carlton Meres Country Park, in Suffolk.
Guests at the holiday park will benefit from the additional service, allowing them to surf the internet, listen to music and watch films, all from the comfort of their holiday park home.

The wi-fi service comes as part of new investment in the Lifestyle Living Group Park.

‘We’re freezing our pitch fees, which in real terms will see us absorbing the cost of inflationary rises,’ said David Macdonald, managing director at Lifestyle Living Group.

‘We wanted to give our loyal customers a boost and make home ownership at Carlton Meres just that little bit easier for anyone considering joining us.’

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TOP SPOT FOR HOLGATES!

TOP SPOT FOR HOLGATES!Staff from Holgate’s Bay View Caravan Park, in Bolton-le-Sands, are busy celebrating after winning top spot in the Holiday Park/ Holiday Village 2014 category in the annual Marketing Lancashire Tourism Awards.

This is the second successive year that the Bolton-le-Sands holiday park has taken the number one spot.

More than 600 people, representing tourism’s top brass from across Lancashire gathered in the Blackpool Tower ballroom earlier this month, to celebrate tourism excellence in the county and to mark the 120th anniversary of Blackpool Tower.

On the evening, the glittering dinner and awards ceremony was masterfully presented by esteemed journalist and broadcaster, John Sergeant, who presented 20 of the county’s finest tourism businesses and a Tourism Superstar with their richly deserved awards. The winners of which now have the opportunity to go on and represent Lancashire in the national Visit England Awards for Excellence 2015.

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Grand designs

Grand designsA group of young design and technology students recently visited Hoburne Naish in New Milton to see caravans of the past, present and future, before getting the chance to design their own. Some 33 pupils from Bransgore Primary School were among the first to see inside the exciting new Concept caravan design by manufacturer ABI, which has walls that move at the touch of a button, enabling nine people to holiday in a 30ft x 13 futuristic space.

The children also had the opportunity to talk to Norman Imm, who first stayed at Hoburne Naish in the early 1930s in old railway carriages and buses. After seeing photographs of holiday homes of the past and looking around caravans of today, they will now design their own caravan of the future in answer to a challenge laid down by TV property show presenter George Clarke.

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Brand new Lincolnshire park home estate

Brand new Lincolnshire park home estateWyldecrest Parks is delighted to announce it is opening a brand new park in Coningsby, Lincolnshire.

To celebrate the occasion, the first two homes sold will be sold from just £99,995.

The park is surrounded by open countryside and situated on Hawthorn Hill, adjoining a prime residential development. The first home is due to arrive at the beginning of January and there are plots for a total of 36 new homes.

Alfie Best, chairman of Wyldecrest Parks, said, ‘I am very proud to have developed this fantastic new park. It had been left in a poor state when we bought it, but over the past eight months we have levelled it and started again from scratch.

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Chain of honours

Chain of honoursCelebrating a hat-trick of honours, including winning ‘Loo of the Year’ for their on-site facilities, the husband-and-wife team behind a Hay-on-Wye holiday park are really celebrating this autumn.

The first of these awards has placed Borders Hideaway Holiday Home Park, in Clyro, just outside the world-famous literary town, among a small elite of holiday parks judged to be Britain’s best. It is among just ten out of more than 2,000 caravan and camping parks in the UK which boast the prestigious Five Star Gold award given out by VisitEngland to its highest rated parks. The national tourist board says the Gold standard can only be achieved if a park demonstrates exceptional quality standards during its annual grading inspection.

The park’s second glittering prize this autumn has been the David Bellamy Conservation Award, presented by the world-famous conservationist at its top gold level.

Completing the hat-trick of honours for Borders Hideaway this year is the 2014 ‘Loo of the Year’ award for the high quality standards of its washrooms.

The family-run park was acquired by local businessman Denis Lloyd Jones in 2006, and has since benefited from extensive investment in its landscaping and facilities. More information about the park is available at: www.bhhhp.co.uk

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New owners for Cambrian Homes

New owners for Cambrian HomesYFM Equity Partners, one of the UK’s most active investors in small businesses has invested in the management buy-in and buyout (BIMBO) of Cambrian Park & Leisure Homes Ltd, which designs and manufacturers timber holiday lodges for the UK holiday park market, together with its sister company, Cambrian Kitchens. Centric Commercial Finance is providing a working capital facility to the business to facilitate growth.

Owner-managers Richard and Esme Watson are selling Cambrian, the business they originally purchased in 2007.

Based in Porthmadog, a harbour town in North Wales, Cambrian is responsible for over 120 people, who design and build lodges across 15 product ranges. Over the past two years, Cambrian has increased its turnover by over 30 per cent through winning new contracts with a wide range of holiday park operators and the success of the popular Plantation model. It is expected to report a turnover in excess of £9m for 2014. Richard Watson will retain an investment in the company and continue as a consultant to the business, working particularly on new lodge designs.

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