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Celebrating excellence

december blogWe love turning the spotlight on the country’s best parks, homes, suppliers and services. Every month we feature some of the UK’s premier options in all of the aforementioned categories and some of the stories we get to hear are truly heart-warming.

But that’s not the only reason we like learning of best practice, wherever it may be found. It also serves to illustrate how things should be done so that everybody in our little ‘park home club’ knows what they should be aspiring to. If this helps raise standards and celebrate all that’s right with the industry, then all to the good!

It’s with these sentiments at the forefront of my mind that I have great pleasure in unveiling this year’s Park of the Year competition (see page 11). Since its inception more than 15 years ago, this Towergate Insurance-sponsored competition has garlanded lots of lovely parks, their owners, managers and, most importantly, communities of residents. After all, it’s always the residents that really help make a park special. We want to celebrate all of that again in 2016!

By entering your park home estate for our prestigious title you could scoop a fantastic £500 cash prize for yourself, as well as a further £500 for your park... to be spent on the residents. Now you can’t say fairer than that, can you?

It’s not just great parks that are grabbing the column inches this month though. We’ve also got a fabulous brace of homes from Wessex and Tingdene - the Dorset park home and the Kudos lodge respectively - under review. See what our expert reviewer’s critical eye makes of them from page 30.

Finally, we know how much you enjoy your legal help and advice, and how vital it can sometimes be. That’s why we’re looking back on the achievements of the Leasehold Advisory Service (LEASE), an organisation that has helped both residents and site owners since it stepped bravely into the park home sector two years ago (see page 70).

december coverAlexAlex Melvin

 

 

 

Alex Melvin, Editor
Email: phhc.ed@kelsey.co.uk

 December 2015 - buy it here

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Energy saving directory

november blogWinter can be a worrisome time of year for old and vulnerable members of society, including many park home residents.

There’s the seemingly intractable problem of rising fuel bills - many struggle to make ends meet even without having hefty gas and electricity charges to factor in. Then there’s the issue of mobility, especially for those on rural or semi-rural parks who need to get about safely in icy or snowy conditions.

Living on a community like a park home estate can often help to overcome such difficulties. Where else could you find neighbours on hand to offer lifts to the supermarket or the GPs in inclement conditions? Or fellow park residents ready with a hot meal or a cuppa and a chat in a warm living room to banish the winter blues?

Despite these benefits, any park resident would be remiss not to try to make savings on bills by getting better home insulation or seeking the services of a speciailist refurbisher to upgrade the quality of their park home.

But it’s not just homecare and insulation specialists you will find in our energy savings directory (see page 51). You will find a wide range of experts in a wide range of park home matters, all with their own take on how to protect yourself against the coldest months.

Aside from our energy saving special, we’ve got lots more for your delectation in our bumper November issue.

We visit sublime residential park home sites in Lincolnshire, Dorset and East Sussex. This trio of top parks really does have something for everybody (see page 10).

On the holiday side, we also review some lovely sites - in Herefordshire and Powys (see page 102).

Finally, for those who missed them, we’ve got reviews of three important park and holiday home shows starting on page 112.

november coverAlexAlex Melvin

 

 

 

Alex Melvin, Editor
Email: phhc.ed@kelsey.co.uk

 November 2015 - buy it here

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60 wonderful years!

october blogOne of the industry’s best known and longest established park operators, Berkeleyparks, celebrates its 60th anniversary this month.

Everybody knows someone on a Berkeleyparks site - after all, the well-respected operator is the UK’s largest site owner with a whopping 50 parks in its impressive portfolio. In almost a decade in the park home world, I’m yet to encounter a Berkeleyparks site that I’ve not been made to feel really welcome on... or one that I couldn’t say was anything less than top-notch. That’s quite an achievement, considering the company looks after so many residents across the country!

With this firmly in mind, it comes as a privilege and an pleasure to unveil our 48-page Berkeleyparks special (see page 79). We get to grips with the history of the company, from its humble beginnings to the sprawling operation it is today. We also run the rule over a superb selection of its parks, including half a dozen full park profiles and the lowdown on all its other options, too.

We also examine its transportation arm - an important cog that ensures the smooth transit of mobile homes from manufacturer’s factory to Berkeleyparks’ sites.

Finally, as Berkeleyparks is such a crucial part of the industry - not only directly employing many hundreds of staff but also keeping other companies in associated parts of the industry well served for work - we sign off our guide with our top ten reasons for choosing Berkeleyparks.

On top of your Berkeleyparks guide, there’s plenty more to whet your appetite this month. We visit parks in the south and the north of the country: Dorset and Lancashire to be precise.

We also preview the Hercma show at Beaulieu, in Hampshire, and the West Country event, in Devon.

And if new homes are your bag, look out for our reviews of the award-winning Manor Imagine (see page 32) and Wessex’s stunning Elite at Osmington Park, in Dorset (page 132). Enjoy the issue!

october coverAlexAlex Melvin

 

 

 

Alex Melvin, Editor
Email: phhc.ed@kelsey.co.uk

 October 2015 - buy it here

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Residential parks galore!

september blogI’m not usually prone to excessive bouts of excitement but this month’s bumper issue, which includes a free copy of our annual Residential Parks Guide - the UK’s biggest and best printed listings directory of residential mobile home sites - has made me almost giddy with anticipation.

At PH&HC, we love adding value to your monthly magazine so this September’s issue is a real highlight. The Residential Parks Guide lists more than 1,350 of Britian’s best park home estates. It’s split into handily colour-coded regional sections so you can start planning your park search right away! It’s also packed full of lots of informative features, ranging from profiles of different sites to expert tips and advice on choosing a home, specialist refurbisher, insurer and much more. In short, it’s an absolutely indispensible guide to everything connected to the mobile home world.

But as well as that, there’s also plenty to get excited about in the issue proper. Don’t say we never give you anything as, on top of our Residential Parks Guide, one lucky reader will also get the chance to win a fantastic air-conditioning unit from the kindly souls at Cool2Day, worth a cool £2,000. After the oppressive humidity we’ve had to suffer this summer, an opportunity like that’s definitely more than just hot air! Turn to page 102 for your chance to enter the competition.

But if you’re not fortunate enough to win our state-of-the-art air-con unit, we guarantee you’ll still be a winner in another way. We’ve teamed up with the green-fingered experts at Thompson & Morgan to offer every reader £21-worth of free pansies - turn to page 101 to find out how to claim your colourful gift.

There’s no denying that residential parks take top billing this month though. As well as those featured and listed in our Guide, we’ve also got a brace of full-length park reviews from sites in the south-west; Dorset and Gloucestershire to be precise (see page 10). Throw in a top Bedfordshire site for good measure (see page 24) and you’ll be in park heaven this September!

Finally, it would be remiss of me not to draw your attention to the upcoming Caravan Extravaganza, arriving in Hull this month. Hundreds of park homes, lodges and static caravans will be transported to East Yorkshire from 5 to 6 Septemnber. We’ve got a special nine-page preview on page 62 that will ensure you get the most out of your show experience. Enjoy the issue!

september coverAlexAlex Melvin

 

 

 

Alex Melvin, Editor
Email: phhc.ed@kelsey.co.uk

 

 September 2015 - buy it here

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Stoneleigh love!

august blogAfter four heady days at Stoneleigh Park, in Warwickshire, for the recent World of Park and Leisure Homes Show, it’s hard not to come away feeling excited about all the beautiful new homes you’ve seen and also proud to be associated with such an innovative and dynamic UK industry.

The Park Home & Holiday Caravan crew took a stand at the event, right by the main entrance, so we were lucky enough to meet almost every one of the thousands of visitors who streamed through the gates throughout the event. Almost everybody I spoke to waxed lyrical about the quality of park homes and lodges on display and the wealth of information available on each stand. Big thanks must go to show organisers Jo and Pat Turner for once again putting on such a special event. If you weren’t fortunate enough to attend, or you simply want to re-live the brilliance of it all, you can read all about it on page 30.

One of the most stylish and impressive of all the 50 homes on display at Stoneleigh was undoubtedly the Omar Anniversary (turn to page 40 for a full review). The specially constructed model was launched as part of Omar’s 50th anniversary celebrations, hence the name. It certainly caught the eye as it was voted ‘best park home at Stoneleigh’ by showgoers in a hotly contested category. Omar unveiled this sublime model to much fanfare, cake and champagne at special trade event on Thursday, 11 June and this event set the tone for the remainder of the show.

In fact, there was so much going on at the Stoneleigh show that I barely had time to catch my breath!  In a rare quiet moment, I sat down at the PH&HC stand with a cuppa and, by chance, caught the faint strains of 1970s girl group The Supremes’ upbeat hit, Stoned Love, emanating from a nearby radio. It was one of those times when a pop song - completely coincidentally - utterly mirrors your mood. If the title had only been ‘Stoneleigh love’ instead, it would been even better! Well done to all those who put such effort into ensuring the success of the show.  
I look forward to seeing what’s in store next year... and what Motown belter I can dedicate to it for 2016!

AUGUSt coverAlexAlex Melvin

 

 

 

Alex Melvin, Editor
Email: phhc.ed@kelsey.co.uk

 August 2015 - buy it here

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Eastern opportunity

Eastern opportunityFinding your perfect park can be a bit of a minefield. There are so many things to consider: do you want a park close to a town and city and all its amenities? Would you prefer a countryside retreat where you can hunker down and get away from it all? Is a park home on the coast your dream? What about family? How near or far do you need to be to your children or grand-children? Those are just a few of the questions you might be asking yourself if your busy plotting your park search. Believe me though, those initial thoughts are just the tip of the iceberg...

That’s why it’s always good to get a helping hand, especially from somebody who’s expert in the field! This month, we’re doing exactly that by helping a retired Baptist Minister and his wife take their first tentative steps in what will hopefully be a smooth and painless journey to finding their ideal park home estate.

Mike and Caroline Elcome want to escape London and find a top park site broadly equidistant to their six grandchildren, who are dotted around the country. They’ve settled on a region - Cambridgeshire - and left the rest to us! Turn to page 27 to find out which parks we shortlisted for the couple close to the historic university city of Cambridge. We’ve found some real corkers!
Staying in the east of England, we also travel to a lovely park in Norfolk where the residents cannot speak highly enough of the site or its owners (see page 10).

It’s not just the east of the UK that grabs our attention this issue though. In total, we visit and review a whopping seven sites. Cheshire, Devon and Cornwall also come under consideration, making your July issue one of the best this year!

While we’re talking about options for prospective park home buyers, I should also flag up this month’s legal feature. We look at the buying and selling process with the expert help of the Leasehold Advisory Service (LEASE) and Turbervilles solicitors. There have been some key changes to the legislation over the past couple of years and our article - see page 84 - will put you firmly in the picture, without muddying the waters with lots of jargon and legalese.  Enjoy the issue!

july coverAlexAlex Melvin

 

 

 

Alex Melvin, Editor
Email: phhc.ed@kelsey.co.uk

 July 2015 - buy it here

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