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Monday, June 24, 2013

AM calls for caravan park legislation

North Wales Assembly Member Mark Isherwood is calling for  proposed new holiday caravan park legislation to address concerns raised by the industry in North Wales.
Speaking in the Assembly Debate ‘Seeking the Assembly’s Agreement to Introduce a Member Proposed Bill on Holiday Caravan Park (Wales)’, Mr Isherwood called for the Bill to address the concerns of holiday park representatives in North Wales, deal with the problem of people living on holiday caravan parks all year around and protect caravan owners who are threatened with unfair eviction.
He said: “The industry states that, if inappropriately drafted, legislation would give rise to the increased cost and red-tape burden on an industry that is a mainstay of Welsh tourism, at a time of an extremely hard market. The industry wants to see abuses in holiday parks eradicated. However, it says that local authorities already have the powers to enforce.
"The industry says that the history of poor enforcement could be best addressed through giving local authorities a duty to enforce. However, the issues that are highlighted by the Bill’s proposal address the planning and site licensing of a park business, and, since the position for each park will be different in both these respects, they say that it is essential that enforcement is addressed on a case-by-case basis.”
Mr Isherwood asked for the Bill to tackle the problem of caravan owners living on sites all year around by calling on local authorities to make checks to ascertain that a site licence applicant is not seeking to circumvent the home park legislation by applying to license a home park site as a holiday site.
“The terms of Tree Tops caravan park state that the park is not a residential caravan park, and that neither Flintshire County Council, nor the park directors will allow customers to make their mobile holiday home their permanent home. This means that you will need to be able to prove that you are using your caravan holiday home within the terms of the park licence."
He also called for the new legislation to be designed to help caravan owners who are unfairly evicted, stating that caravan owners had complained that park owners used terms and conditions that allowed park owners to treat them arbitrarily. The Assembly agreed that the Bill's proposer, Welsh Conservative AM for Clwyd West, Darren Millar, could introduce a Bill on Holiday Caravan Parks in Wales.

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