Last week, Parkdean Resorts and Mike Wood, MP, hosted a champagne reception at the House of Commons, to recognise the efforts made by the holiday park sector over the past eighteen months to support local tourism jobs, and save the past two summer seasons.
For the first time ever, the largest operators of static caravan and lodge holiday park businesses in the UK – Parkdean Resorts, Bridge Leisure Parks, Away Resorts, Haven, Hoburne Holiday Parks, Park Holidays, Park Leisure, Verdant Leisure, and Haulfryn – came together, in collaboration with UKHospitality, the National Caravan Council, and The British Holiday & Home Parks Association. Our group worked together to identify ways to enable holiday parks to safely reopen, to protect the economies of our coastal and rural communities which are predominantly in deprived areas.
As a group, UK holiday parks generate £9.3bn in visitor spend every year, and prior to the pandemic, our sector was predicted to grow at an annual rate of 3.8% through to 2025. We welcome 13,613,788 holidaymakers to our parks, and employ more than 21,000 people, with many of these jobs in rural and coastal communities which rely on our businesses to thrive. Because of how inter-connected we are with local supply chains, our sector also supports a further 171,000 jobs across the UK.
Positive impact on Government policy
Had holiday parks not able to open in the summer, many businesses would have failed, and the economic and social impact would have been directly felt in areas which are already under tremendous economic pressure. Our group sent over 500 personalised letters and emails to local politicians and lawmakers, followed up with phone calls, infographics, case studies, video content and a campaign webpage, with General Managers also writing to their local MPs, which resulted in the campaign making a positive impact in Parliament.
Last week's reception was an opportunity to reflect on a job well done, to recognise the commitment of our sector colleagues, and to thank MPs for listening to us, and for supporting our campaign. By working together as a sector, and forging closer relationships with UKHospitality, we have been able to speak with one voice, and have a positive impact on Government policy.
You can read more about our campaign here.