Wednesday, 6 April 2011

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28th July  2020


BEWARE - PARK HOME INSURANCE SCAM:
We have been advised that a number of park home residents in Surrey have purchased what they believed to be legitimate park home insurance from a sham company trading as ‘Barkers of Cheltenham’. Sadly this is a SCAM, the company address and telephone numbers are fake but a number of people, we do not know how many, have purchased this product and indeed renewed it over a number of years, the police are investigating so do contact them if you have been deceived.
Park Home residents may recall that Bakers (not Barkers) of Cheltenham was a legitimate park home insurance provider founded by John Baker in 1971 and over the years insured many thousands of park homes, the company no longer exists as such and clearly the name has been exploited by some pretty unscrupulous people. Paul Baker, the son of John now trades as Paul Baker Insurance Services, still based in Cheltenham, also still sponsoring the Park Help Line, the .CONFIDENTIAL help line whose operators will try to get Park Home Owners talking to those who can properly assist with all matters related to Park Home Living.( tel: 0203 8466601)



9th July  2020




Park Homes Policy Forum
Published by Tony Turner · · 
ALL PARK HOME RESIDENT`S TO PAY VICTIM SURCHARGES TO PARK OWNERS:
This is not how it is described but it amounts to the same. The Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government has now published its summary of consultations and the governments`s response to the `Fit and Proper` person criteria to be applied at residential park home sites, also confirming that primary legislation does NOT include a power to prevent site owners from passing on the annual or application fees that park owners will have to pay to councils, to park home residents via the pitch fee.
Although not all home-owners have been victims of park owner abuses and negligence`s that have led to the introduction of the criteria, as things stand, all will have to pay toward the costs. The effect, is that the rogue operators, whose behavior has prompted the need, will reap the reward of additions to pitch fees that will then become subject the future annual inflationary indexed increases - becoming nothing less that a victim surcharge, payable by the victims to the crooks.
We are expecting our petition to government seeking to prevent this happening to shortly go live when it will be published on the government Petitions Office website. We will be asking ALL park home residents to add their signatures.
Further information can be found below...........:Please `share `this post, `comment` if you will, `like` if you agree and click `following` for updates direct to your news-feed.





Park Homes Policy Forum

ALL PARK HOME RESIDENT`S TO PAY VICTIM SURCHARGES TO PARK OWNERS: This is not how it is described but it amount...





COURT LATEST: -  THEFT OF SONIA McCOLL`S HOME

Yesterday, 8th July 2020, Darren BASELEY & Stewart GREGORY appeared a Exeter Magistrates Court charged with the theft of Sonia`s home.  Both defendants pleaded ‘not guilty’, and the case will now be transferred to the Crown Court.   The next  appearance will be for an administrative hearing, listed to  take place on 7th August 2020.   

Whether eventually found guilty or acquitted; as Not Guilty pleas have now  been entered, we cannot comment further at this time.


7th July  2020




FTAO: APPG on Park Homes


MHCLG have contacted us this morning to confirm:

I would like to inform you that we have today published the summary of responses and the Government response to the fit and proper person test consultation. A copy of the document is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/mobile-homes-a-fit-and-proper-person-test-for-park-home-sites.

We also plan to lay the required Regulations to implement the fit and proper test today. When published, the Regulations will be available on the House of Commons website at https://statutoryinstruments.parliament.uk/. The Regulations are affirmative and will have to be debated by both Houses before they come into force next year. I will let you know when the debates have been scheduled. 

We understand the regulations will be laid later today.

With every good wish,  

Ros


For the All-Party Parliamentary Group 


Ros Pritchard OBE, Director General







NEWS UPDATE: on the theft of Sonia's Home.



Stuart Gregory ( aged 40) of Whittles Drive Normandy, Surrey and Darren Baseley, (46) of Henrys Run, Cranbrook Exeter, were due to appear at Exeter, charged with the November 2017 theft of the home of Sonia McColl on Tueday 7th July 2020.

There has been a last minute change and they are now due to appear at Exeter Magistrates Court, Heavytree Road, Exeter, on Wednesday 8th July 2020.

Full report to follow shortly.


8th June  2020


William Tandoh <William.Tandoh@communities.gov.uk>

9:55 AM (1 hour ago)
Reply
to meCHOPEC@parliament.ukPeterNataliebest@parliament.ukRobertSteve


Hello Sonia,

Hope you and the family are all well.

The Mobile Homes Act 2013 (Commencement No. 2) (England) Order 2020 (Statutory Instrument No.565/2020) is not the detailed regulations required to implement the fit and proper person test set out in Section 8 of the Mobile Homes Act 2013. The Order only brings Section 8 into force which will then enable the detailed regulations (which will be debated in both Houses) to be implemented.

The Government consulted last year, (https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/mobile-homes-a-fit-and-proper-person-test-for-park-home-sites) and sought views on on the introduction of a fit and proper person test for site licence holders and managers of relevant protected sites in England. The Government response to the consultation will be published in due course and the required regulations laid, when parliamentary time allows.

sincerely

William

William Tandoh
Private Rented Sector
3rd Floor | Fry Building | 2 Marsham Street | London | SW1P 4DF
E: william.tandoh@communities.gov.uk  | T: 0303 444 3699



7th June  2020



A FIT AND PROPER REQUIREMENT TO BE BROUGHT IN ON 15TH JUNE 2020



Provisions to enable introduction of ‘fit and proper person’ requirement for mobile home site managers
New statutory instrument brings into force last remaining section of Mobile Homes Act 2013 to be commenced

New regulations have been introduced in relation to the introduction of a 'fit and proper person' requirement for mobile home site managers.

The Mobile Homes Act 2013 (Commencement No. 2) (England) Order 2020 (SI.No.565/2020) brings into force section 8 of the Mobile Homes Act 2013 on 15 June 2020,



 which inserts new sections 12A to 12E into the Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act 1960 -

section 12A provides that the Secretary of State may, by regulations, prohibit the use of land as a residential mobile home site unless the local authority is satisfied

 that the occupier or a person appointed to manage the site is a fit and proper person to do so;   and  sections 12B to 12E give the Secretary of State the power, by regulations, to make related provision as to matters to be taken into account by local authorities  in making a fit and proper person assessment,

the establishment of a fit and proper person register, and the procedure for applications and enforcement, 

including the creation of criminal offences. 
SI.No.565/2020 is available from legislation.gov.uk 



----------------------------------------





To all Justice Campaign Supporters.



I have sent the letter below to:

William Tandoh  Communities and Local Government.

Sir Christopher Chope OBE MP   Chair of the the APPG for Park Homes

Sir Peter Bottomley MP                 Vice Chair of the APPG.
Alex Sobel MP                               APPG
Steve Brine MP
Robert Buxkland QC  MP

As I fear that it has created yet another loophole to be exploited.  I will let you know of any replies and if not received I will bring it up at the next APPG meeting.

Best Wishes
Sonia.


Dear All
After receiving the news regarding the new statutory instrument regarding  "Fit and Proper Person requirement for mobile home site managers"  I have posted the piece below to the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign web site, facebook page and data base.

Whilst this is indeed good news and an excellent way forward;  the question has to be asked why this test only applies to  MANAGERS.  

I am assuming and hope  this is a mistake and also covers SITE OWNERS, because if not it is a loophole that will be exploited. 

As you will be aware, many sites do not have managers, and whilst there are some good site owners, there are many who continue to be unscrupulous and I and the JUSTICE Campaign  would like clarification that these rogues will not escape the Fit and Proper Person test.

May I respectfully ask that you please let me know as soon as possible so that I may in turn inform the  JUSTICE Campaign.

With every good wish
Sonia

Sonia McColl OBE
Founder of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign and Park-HELP-Line





5th May  2020


Park-HELP-Line
02038466601
We apologise if you have tried to call Park-HELP-Line recently
and have been unable to reach us.
Sadly, a problem occurred that was out of our control
but it has now been corrected and
Park-HELP-Line
is open to any Park Home Resident who
needs help with a Park Home Problem.
In addition, during these strange times,
if you are a Park Home Resident
who is suffering from isolation and need to speak to a friendly fellow resident.
For the period of the lockdown you can also call
Park-HELP-Line
The Message from our sponsor Paul Baker of PB Insurance,
 Sonia McColl and every volunteer operator is:

STAY SAFE AND KEEP WELL.

21st  April  2020



ARRESTED – NOW CHARGED
for the THEFT of Sonia's home.
Most of our readers will recall the theft in November 2017
 of  Sonia McColl's home. 
Sonia is founder and lead of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign
and now thanks everyone for their ongoing support and
is pleased to post that:

Devon and Cornwall Police have charged jointly:


  • Mr Stewart GREGORY aged 40 of WHITTLES DRIVE, NORMANDY, SURREY


  • Mr Darren BASELEY aged 46 of HENRYS RUN, CRANBROOK, EXETER, DEVON.


With Theft of a mobile home between 21/11/2017 and 22/11/2017.

First court date is currently scheduled for 07/07/2020 at Exeter Law Courts Southernhay Gardens, Exeter



Woman homeless as 10-tonne mobile home stolen


mobile homeImage copyright DEVON AND CORNWALL POLICEImage captionPolice said the thieves who took the mobile home "knew what they were doing"
Thieves have stolen a 10-tonne mobile home, leaving the victim homeless.
The £30,000 home was taken from a haulage yard in Devon while repairs were carried out ahead of its owner, Sonia McColl, moving to the county.
Mrs McColl,  who is now staying with friends, said she was "totally devastated" and "numb" and her home was not insured when it was stolen.
Police said the 40ft (12m) long home was taken by thieves who "knew what they were doing".
Mrs McColl had been moving from a mobile home park where she had lived with her late husband.
She had bought a second-hand mobile home to move into at a new location and it was temporarily stored at the haulage yard in  Cullompton from where  it was taken.  Mrs McColl was then contacted by a firm that were due to collect it to it was no longer there.
Mrs McColl is currently staying with friends. 
Mrs McColl, who founded a campaign group for people who own mobile homes, said: "I had bought new curtains and had so been looking forward to putting them up and buying a Christmas tree."
She says messages of support and offers of temporary accommodation had been offered by supporters of the campaign, and had "really helped to prop me up."
Mrs McColl said the home was insured while it was in place at a mobile home park and while in transport but not while being stored at the haulage yard.
Officers said a specific low-load trailer would have been used to take the mobile home.
 Devon and Cornwall Police, said, "This is a very high value and emotive crime as victim is now homeless and clearly distraught."
The serial number for the home is SA11.049221E. Police have urged anyone with information to contact them.


4th April  2020





LORD GRAHAM OF EDMONTON
26 March 1925 - 21 March 2020

PRESIDENT OF:
 THE Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign

It is with the deepest sadness that I report the passing of our President, Lord Graham of Edmonton (fondly known as Lord Ted of Ed) on 21st March 2020.

What a wonderful gentleman we have lost but also had the privilege to know; a truly genuine man who always gave 150% effort to help Park Home Residents.

I know that many of you wrote to Lord Ted and sent him Birthday and Christmas cards; for which he was truly grateful - and I know that you will be as devastated as I to have lost a true friend and supporter.

Sadly, although published on other sites, our Justice Campaign was not made aware of Lord Ted's passing until today.  Therefore I apologise for not being able to let you all know much earlier.  However, I have asked to speak with the family and if appropriate and with their permission; I will send a wreath from our Justice Campaign.

Before I continue with our remembrance of Lord Ted, you should all know that he kept in regular contact with our justice campaign and I sent him regular updates on all that was happening.  Indeed, one of our operators on Park-HELP-Line regularly visited Lord Ted in his care home.  I know they shared many lovely stories and indeed confidences and he was able to hear first hand about the problems that continued in the park home sector and we in turn were able to keep in close touch with Lord Ted.

I first met Lord Ted at our initial Justice Campaign Rally in London when you all campaigned to bring an end to Sale Blocking.  Much to my surprise, I was seated next to Lord Ted in the committee room and from that moment on, he was a very special friend.  It was Lord Ted who accompanied Dame Annette Brooke and myself to a meeting with the then Housing Minister, Grant Shapps.  It was from  this intimate meeting and behind the scenes work by Annette Brooke that Mr. Shapps moved to bring about a private members bill (the only way to move things forward) to stop Sale Blocking - and of course this led to the Mobile Homes Act 2013.  Little was known of this to others and I only reveal it now so that you may know how very helpful Lord Ted was in assisting our park home owners JUSTICE campaign to achieve its goal.

In his final years, and after the passing of his sons, Lord Ted moved to a care home.  Here, he became interested in the gardens and sent me a wonderful photograph of himself with his tomato plants.  (He fondly called himself, " Mr. Tomato Man." and on a personal note I am thankful that he was my friend and for the help he gave me.

We all thank Lord Graham for all he has done for us.  He will be sadly missed by all his friends in the park home sector and we send our sincere condolences to his family at this sad time - for they have lost a loved one and we have all lost a truly great friend and supporter.



God Bless You and Sleep Well Lord Ted. 
 "You were simply the best"














11th March  2020


To All Park Home Residents.





Please find below the draft minutes of the last APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group on Park Homes.)  As I was unable to attend due to another unbreakable appointment, I did, as promised sent in several questions that were given to me by Residents who wanted the various topics to be aired in AOB " Any Other Business. " As you will see from the minutes below; there was no time left in the meeting for " Any Other Business."  In addition, I also sent in a written question to the Minister - but that was also not aired. 





As you will all probably know, in the last government re-shuffle following the APPG, Esther McVey MP (who spoke at the meeting) lost her position as Minister of State at the Ministry of Housing.





If any residents have questions they would like brought up at the next meeting, please send them to me in a short and concise format at:  phojc1sm@gmail.com 

and I will do my very best to present and bring them to the attention of the APPG..





Best Wishes

Sonia McColl

Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign





DRAFT  MINUTES OF THE

ALL-PARTY PARLIAMENTARY GROUP ON PARK HOMES

The minutes of the inaugural meeting of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Park Homes for the new Parliament which took place on Monday, 10 February 2020 in Room N, Portcullis House, Westminster, commencing at 17.00. 

PRESENT: The Rt. Hon. Esther McVey MP, Minister of State at the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government Sir Christopher Chope MP (convenor and Chairman) Peter Aldous MP Alex Sobel MP Anne Double, representing Steve Double MP Ben Dugher, representing Lee Rowley MP Simon Gibson, representing Michael Tomlinson MP Grace Duffy, MHCLG Emma Garrett, MHCLG Jules Dufty, MHCLG Matthew Cohen, BEIS Consumer Policy Team Alicia Dunne, NCC Brian Doick MBE, NAPHR Richard Hand, LEASE Ros Pritchard OBE, BH&HPA Anne Webb, volunteer

APOLOGIES: Stephen Barclay MP Sir Peter Bottomley MP Cherilyn Mackrory MP Lord Carter of Coles Baroness Maddock Lord Teverson Anthony Essien, LEASE Mervyn Kolher, AgeUK Sonia McColl OBE, PHOJC Lisa Osborn, North Somerset Council Alan Savory MBE, IPHAS

1. Approval of Minutes

The meeting APPROVED the minutes of the previous meeting of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Park Homes which took place on Monday, 1 July 2019, commencing at 17.00 in Room M, Portcullis House, Westminster.

2. APPG on Park Homes

The meeting AGREED that Sir Christopher Chope MP should return the Group’s Registration Form to the Office of the Parliamentary Commissioner to re-register the group as the ‘All-Party Parliamentary Group on Park Homes’, with all arrangements as in the last Parliament, viz.: • Statement of Purpose – ‘Bring together parliamentarians, park home owners and industry representatives to discuss issues of common interest, including legislation and its enforcement to eliminate abuse and disadvantage.’ 
2     • Members • Parliamentarians - The Membership was kept up-to-date and all Parliamentarians who had attended meetings, requested membership and/or responded to the Group’s calling notices of meetings were included. • Stakeholders - Requests received from individual park home owners and park owners to attend meetings of the APPG would each be informed that individual stakeholders may be represented at meetings of the APPG by their constituency MP and/or through their national representative organisation. For homeowners, national representative organisations which were invited to attend meetings of the APPG were IPHAS, NAPHR and the Park Home Owners’ Justice Campaign; for park owners, these were BH&HPA and NCC. • Public Enquiry Point - Mrs Pritchard to serve as the public enquiry point. • Website - A dedicated webpage for the Group is published at www.parkhome.org.uk/APPG.  • Secretariat - Ms Webb to serve as minuting secretary for the Group.

3.     Election of Officers

The meeting ELECTED officers to the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Park Homes as follows: Chair    Sir Christopher Chope MP (Conservative) Vice-Chair  Peter Aldous MP (Conservative) Vice-Chair  Sir Peter Bottomley MP (Conservative) Vice-Chair  Lord Carter of Coles (Labour) Vice-Chair  Alex Sobel MP (Labour Co-op)

4.    Income and expenditure statement from previous Parliament – Year to 13 September 2019

The meeting APPROVED the income and expenditure statement from the previous Parliament – Year to 13 September 2019. It was noted that the APPG on Park Homes had received no financial income, nor benefits in kind from a source which exceeded £1,500 and had incurred no expenditure in the year to 13 September 2019.

5.     Update from The Rt Hon Esther McVey MP, Minister of State at the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government

The Chairman welcomed the Minister and said that it was important for the Group to ensure that the park owners who are ‘behaving’ and delivering good quality homes to residents were not undermined by the ‘rogues’ whose numbers seemed to be increasing.  To that end, he had presented three Private Member’s Bills to try to bring the ‘rogues’ into line:  • to differentiate between parks subject to business rates or where council tax applied • to amend the Mobile Homes Act 1983 and to address the misuse of complex arrangements to limit homeowners’ security • to amend the 1960 Act to provide site licensing protections even where there was no planning consent.

The Chairman hoped for at least one of the Bills to have a second reading in June.

The meeting noted the Adjournment Debate of 1 October 2019 (see Hansard).

The Chairman introduced the Minister who commented that she was delighted to see such strong support from Parliamentarians. She said she had constituents and friends who moved to park homes to free up capital and enjoy their retirement without worries, but that was not always the case, especially if they lived on a site run by one of the rogue park owners.

She said she saw park homes as an important part of the country’s housing stock, adding that it was vital to close the loopholes that are used to exploit residents. Her Department appreciated that there were a large number of good park owners and it was important not to damage their businesses while attempting to stop the unlawful activities of the others.

She outlined the package of different measures, such as ‘fit and proper person’ and explained the Ministry’s ongoing work programme which included preparing Primary legislation, the Primary Authority and the Park Homes Working Group. She mentioned the difficulty in getting Parliamentary time and said she hoped that backbenchers would get involved and that perhaps, instead of having one large piece of legislation, the various problems could be tackled one by one. Residents had been raising problems about commission, pitch fees and service charges.

The Minister felt it was important for the worst cases to be publicised so that a message would go to the rogue park owners that they would not get away with their malpractices.

Mr Aldous MP commented that when he brought in the 2013 legislation as a Private Member’s Bill, it included provision for consultation and review, with particular regard to fit and proper person. He said that in his view the Act had been helpful, but there were still loopholes. He had a park in his own constituency which had been well run until it was sold to a new owner when Mr Aldous started to receive complaints, something that had never happened under the previous ownership.

Mr Aldous MP questioned whether primary legislation was necessary to bring in the ‘fit and proper person’ test. The Minister said that it could be done through a Statutory Instrument, but she was unsure about timings, but it should be done sooner rather than later. Ms Garrett said she hoped it would be soon and said it had been drafted and was ready.

The Chairman questioned the benefit of the ‘fit and proper person’ test, as he did not think that ‘fit and proper person’ gave any more protection than the site licence currently provides.

The Minister stressed the need for enforcement and said local authorities should make examples of the worst offenders, to deter others. The meeting considered the detail of a particularly serious case where enforcement agencies appeared to be failing to support homeowners and discussed various steps to assist.

The Minister noted that one of the problems was the vulnerability of elderly residents who tend to believe what they are told by site owners, and then fell victim to the scams. The Minister said that there had to be a way to enable local authorities to take on one of the most serious cases.

Mr Doick said that local authorities were unwilling to deal with cases where harassment was reported, claiming that they are short of resources.  The Minister said that local authorities are funded by licensing fees, business rates and council tax so there should be funds available. Mr Cohen explained that Trading Standards services decided which cases to pursue at local level, according to local priorities.

Mr Aldous said that either the legislation had no teeth or local authorities were failing to apply it. He asked if the APPG should contact the LGA about this.

Mr Hand agreed that local authorities didn’t enforce, claiming that their budgets had been slashed over the last ten years. Park homes were not something they were obliged to address so they didn’t get the finance or the attention they needed.

The Minister commented that local authorities have just received a very generous financial settlement.

Mr Sobel MP said that one park in his constituency was owned by a family who had been to prison for various crimes, including arson. This family had purchased homes at less than market value, and had been guilty of digging up residents’ gardens and generally harassing them in the hope that they would sell up and take a low financial offer, just to ‘escape’. Mr Sobel agreed to send further particulars of this case to the Minister. 

The meeting noted that with reference to ‘fit and proper person’ there were problems with who ‘that person’ was as some rogue site owners would nominate a spouse or other family member, or their manager. Limitations as to how watertight the measure could be through a Statutory Instrument were also considered, noting sometimes primary legislation was needed. If the local authority was only able to revoke the licence and that wouldn’t help protect residents. If the site owner failed the test, the local authority should be able to appoint a manager who is fit.

The Chairman asked whether the ‘fit and proper person’ draft had gone out for consultation and was told it was now in the final stages of legal checks. Ms Garrett said the Statutory Instrument was expected to be laid in the spring.

The Chairman commented that there was currently no statutory obligation on councils to do anything but if a statutory obligation was imposed on them, park homes would go up in their list of priorities.

Mrs Pritchard commented that local authorities were concerned about costs, particularly if they had to fight lengthy and complicated court cases. Mr Doick cited a number of cases where rogue park owners had operated parks without site licences so that residents had no protection under the law, and cases of harassment.

The Chairman asked what the Department was doing and whether it been in touch with Trading Standards. Ms Duffy said they had asked Trading Standards about their role. The Minister asked why they had never taken one of the cases forward.

The Minister proposed that there should be a meeting with the National Trading Standards Intelligence Unit to see what investigations they are making. It was noted that abuses which escaped enforcement were spreading to other parks.

The Chairman wound up stating that there was obviously a collective will to sort out the various problems that had been raised, and that enforcement was key to dealing with a lot of these.

6.    Any other business

Time did not permit consideration of any other business.

7..  Date and venue of next meeting

To be confirmed.

The Chairman closed the meeting at 18.00.





5th March  2020


CHECK OUT YOUR WRITTEN AGREEMENTS !
Below is the latest important advice offered by Tony Turner of the Park Homes Policy Forum. This does not effect you if the term of your occupancy is made clear in your Written Statements. However, since recently posting this information, many residents have already reported that the period during which they can remain on their park is either blank, crossed out or marked n/a. If you identify with this issue, Tony has arranged for any questions you may have to be first answered by the Leasehold Advisory Service for Park Homes ,whom you can contact direct.

REPEATING THE MESSAGE:

This is a further recommendation that you dig out your Written Statements and check how long you can remain on the park where you live. Your older, pre 2013 Written Statement will usually answer the question, likely under Part 1, Clause 5, the wording commencing “ The owners estate or interest in the land will end on..................and/or, “ The site owner`s planning permission for the site will end on.........................followed by the words “ This means that your right to stay on the site will not continue after that date unless the site owner`s interest or planning permission is extended.” If the words are followed by “ in perpetuity” your position is clarified. If there is a lesser term, this should also be identified and the same applies to any Agreement entered into after 2013. If not, then you should take early legal advice.

In this, we can refer to the recent determination of the Upper Lands Chamber (ULT) ( Casemine link on the PHPF page ) and the appealed application for a copy of any lease that might have been created by a park owner. In this, the ULT noted: “As far back as 1986 the author of Mobile Homes and the Law London Sweet & Maxwell observed that ‘The restriction of security of tenure which this implied term can import could also give rise to a means of circumvention of the intention of the Act, which is to confer indefinite security of tenure. It would appear that if the freeholder of the protected site grants a short lease to a nominee of his, the owner for the purposes of the 1983 Act would be the short leaseholder and the security of tenure of the occupiers of the mobile homes on the site would end when the lease expires.”

This position has since remained unaddressed by any government, hence the application to establish, whether or otherwise, there might be a right that overrides the problem that leases under seven years do not need to be registered, such arrangements thereby concealed from any resident who may not be aware of their existence. The ULT has since established in its ` spot-on decision, that these are private arrangement between the site-owner and the entity that has been afforded those leases, so they can continue to be hidden.

Regular readers of this page will recall that the prompting of that application emerged from the discovery that the freeholder of certain park sites had afforded short-term leases to other trading entities that we have justifiably described as `sham` companies, thereby taking advantage of successive governments failures to plug this 34 year old loophole.

In essence, this means that if your Agreement does not specify the term of your occupancy, the doors are open for any park owner whose has made similar arrangements, to ask you for potentially significant monies to extend the lease when it is due to expire - or demand substantial increases in pitch fees if you want to remain. Reported cases have revealed that one site owner has proposed the sums up to £40,000, or if unaffordable from savings, pro-rata increases in pitch fees, the latter, given the then monthly costs of occupancy, effectively ensuring that the home would become unsaleable, other than eventually to the site owners themselves. We have described this position as enabled exploitation, cynically applied by an operator that is equally content to sell homes that they know have no planning consents, whilst also preparing to stitch those who unwittingly trusted them into their own self-invented `Written Statements` these removing almost all other protections afforded under the Mobile Homes Act.

Tony has since added the following: "Having since seen the posts where residents have checked and found the word ` indefinately` in their Agreements, The following explanation clarifies the meaning of the word.
In contracts, the word `indefinitely`is unsatisfactorily used to convey two different meanings. Given that the prime directive of contract drafting is not to use one word or phrase to convey two or more meanings and not to use two or more different words or phrases to convey a single meaning. More often than not, `indefinitely` used to convey the meaning “perpetually.” but `in perpetuity` conveys that meaning more clearly, whereas one meaning conveyed by `indefinitely `is “without limit,” with the implication being that although a limit hasn’t been specified, one could be at any point."
( The PHPF has its own website, supported by its same named face-book page. It offers its own independent appraisals that do not beat about the bush )

20th February 2020






WARNING to all Park Home Residents

SHOCKING ONLINE ADVICE SCAM

Park-HELP-Line has been informed that a resident who has applied online to LEASE for advice has been asked  (by what we believe to be a copycat SCAM web site purporting to be LEASE) for a £5.00 CARD PAYMENT before receiving advice.

Sonia McColl, of Park-Help-Line has informed LEASE who have confirmed that no charge is made for advice from the Leasehold Advisory Service.

For the protection of unsuspecting residents; the operators of Park-Help-Line - that is sponsored by Paul Baker Insurance - can be reached on 02038466601 and will only direct any callers to the LEASE telephone service.

If you have been a victim of this scam and given your card details in payment for advice;  please email phojc1sm@gmail.com and your messages will be forwarded to LEASE.

Sonia McColl OBE

Founder of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign and Park-HELP-Line



18th February 2020


DUBIOUS WARNINGS:

Annual pitch fee reviews are the plague of many resident's lives, many paying the proposed increases due to the time, work and anxieties involved in arguing them - or because they are in fear of retribution. That is a different subject. However, some site owners have the available tool of dubious persuasions, so here we example the tactic of the business that claims to be the largest operator of sites in the UK, who seek to instil fear into those who may oppose an increase, by referring to the costs they will incur if they dare to challenge a proposal and proceed to a Tribunal: Once a challenge has been notified, their standard letter reads as follows..........
“ You are now invited to agree the reviewed figure to avoid the need for a Tribunal decision. If you inform us by no later than ( date ) that you now agree the proposed figure, we will ask the Tribunal to withdraw the application with no consequences. Should you however decide to continue with the tribunal proceedings, we will make an application for an award of costs against you for acting unreasonably in refusing to accept a proposal which is in line with your agreement. I look forward to your early response to avoid the need for unnecessary tribunal proceedings and the resulting costs”.
Whilst the position taken is that it is proper to warn of the such possible costs, it is also clear that the underlying message is to deter opposition, even though they are fully aware that such costs are very rarely awarded.
We say that such letters are tantamount to a form of coercion, intended to persuade the more vulnerable to back off. As a general rule the Tribunal CANNOT order one party to pay another`s costs even though it can order one party to reimburse any fees paid by another. In this, Rule 13 of the Tribunal Procedure ( First Tier Tribunal) ( Property Chamber) Rules 2013, shows that the Tribunal may make an order for costs ONLY if a party has acted `unreasonably`, for instance by way of `unreasonable conduct during the process` or` failure to comply with its directions`. There is NO provision whatsoever, that enables  any  site owner  to secure costs in any other circumstances. - therefore the warning letter exampled are not only misleading, they are an obvious form of bullying that no-one making a genuine challenge and who acts reasonably at the hearing and has complied with the directions as issued, has anything to fear from such threats.
Below, we provide more insight into the subject:
Before accessing the link, please see our other recent posts, including the decision of the Upper ( Lands ) Chamber and its relevance to offshoot enterprises, where they will now need to declare their leasehold interests. 
Link: Ist Tier Tribunals - costs

The Upper Tribunal ("UT") has handed down its long awaited decision in a number of con-joined appeals concerning the First Tier Tribunal's ("FTT") power to award costs against a party that has acted "unreasonably" under…

What is "unreasonable" when awarding costs in the First Tier Tribunal ? ...

10th February 2020


Park Homes Policy Forum

Published by Tony Turner 
EVERY CLOUD HAS A SILVER LINING:
Whether known or not to them, in precisely the last 34 days and with known certainty, Wyldecrest Parks have seen losses of c £1.39 million in new home sales revenues, together with the pitch fee income that would otherwise have been receivable upon completions. There may, of course, be more that are not known to us.
This followed the walking away of nine known prospective buyers across a number of their sites who had undertaken their research and returned to talk to existing residents. . Of these, we know that four are now in the process of purchasing their new homes from a competing ethical operator, one has made an offer on an older home they intend to refurbish though another, two have decided to remain in their current bricks and mortar homes. The outcomes of the others are unknown, other than the prediction that they will take even greater care in any decision affecting their futures.
It is clear that such losses are direct consequences of Wyldecrest`s failures or refusals to understand that the best advocates of any business are its OWN satisfied customers. Any professionally operated business knows that just one negative experience will be passed on to another dozen and that the compounding of these numbers does the rest. The losses can be compensated through new outlets and expansions – but ultimately, the marketing spend only serves as a catch-up investment, that then brings its own added risks as the reputational aspects become more geographically widespread. It is a basic lesson that even the dumbest should know.
Of course, Wyldecrest are not alone in operating exploitatively unfit regimes, the paying customers who put the food on their tables treated with outright contempt – but as more prospective buyers become aware and as the government closes in, their positions will become increasingly untenable.
Meanwhile, our message to Wyldecrest Parks - is simply carry on. You are doing a far better job at driving your prospective customers into the arms of competing ethical operators than any of us ! We are all only helping.
Relevant most recent:
PLANNING TO BUY OR SELL ?
FIT AND PROPER ?
LATEST QUESTION IN THE HOUSE
DOUBLE ACT CLOWNS


31st  January 2020




PHOJC Newsletter 2020

Dear All

Another year has passed - and dare I say it, you are all a little closer to obtaining all that you as members of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign have led the way and campaigned for regarding the 10% Commission Charge and a change from RPI to CPI on the pitch fee review.  Any success that eventually comes - should we attain all that we have campaigned - for is due to the park home residents who have been part of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign, lobbied, travelled to London for rallies and spent of their pensions to do so.

 In 2014,  30.000 residents signed a petition that was delivered to Downing Street. 
 In 2017, a further petition was delivered and 300 residents rallied in London.
 In 2019, an Independent Review of the 10% was promised.  You will see what is posted regarding this below - so let's see what 2020 brings.

There are of course many other problems within the park home sector and certainly any legislation to rid our country of the rogue site owners is a long time coming.
Notwithstanding that many distinguished MP's said quite loudly "that the only way to get rid of the rogues was to hit them where it hurts - in their pockets.

Strong words, but did it happen?   NO.    And yet, we have known criminals operating parks that are full of vulnerable and retired people.  Harassment and Intimidation are reported.  People are living on sites with no site licence.  Homes are being sold on parks that have no planning permission for them.  LA's legal departments dither while residents pay the price and can not sell their homes.  Do they know in London.  Well yes they do, because I have reported it at various APPGs and also informed various MPs whose constituents are affected.  Will it change.   Who knows, maybe now that Brexit is not the main issue, someone, somewhere may act.  Park Homes may be a niche area of the housing market but that is no reason to leave the needs of every park home resident in our country on the back burner

Sadly, due to a prior appointment, I can not attend the next meeting of the APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group) for Park Homes - but I will be submitting written questions from park home residents and I will publish the draft minutes when they are available.

I speak almost every day with Tony Turner of the Park Homes Policy Forum who is actively working on many problems that are occurring on sites owned by one of the largest site owners.  He tells it as it is and if  you Google  the   Park Home Policy Forum   you can read his reports.  I have also posted his latest message at the bottom of this newsletter.

All Campaign updates will always be posted on the JUSTICE campaign web site at: www.parkhomeownersjusticecampaign.co.uk so please check them out.

Many thanks for your support and I hope you all keep well and 2020 will be happy, healthy and peaceful for you.
Sonia

RPI to CPI - Official Answer to all  that our JUSTICE Campaign fought for.

Viscount Younger of Leckie, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, has provided the following answer to your written parliamentary question (HL588):

Question raised by Lord Teverson on behalf of a PHOJC member.

Question:
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they intend to change the annual indexing of park home pitch fees from the Retail Price Index to the Consumer Price Index. (HL588)

Tabled on: 20 January 2020

Answer:
Viscount Younger of Leckie:

The Government will introduce the primary legislation necessary to change the inflationary index that is used to review pitch fees for park homes from the Retail Price Index (RPI) to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) as soon as parliamentary time allows


This commitment is part of a wider package of measures designed to improve protections for park home residents and increase professionalism in the sector.



Date and time of answer: 30 Jan 2020


10% Commission Mentioned in Court Case
By D.J. Iles

On January 23rd 2020 a case was heard in Taunton Magistrate's Court where the payment of the 10% commission on the resale of a  park home was mentioned.

The case concerned a charge of assault by beating, which was supported by both CCTV evidence and an independent witness, was bought against a home owner in Chilton Park, which is a residential site on the outskirts of Bridgwater in Somerset.

The charge was that the defendant, David Garwood, a resident of Chilton Park, had assaulted me in October 2019.

Garwood admitted the offence, which was  the latest in a long line of threats against both myself and my disabled wife. My statement was read out by the prosecutor in the court, she  mentioned that because of the problems we have experienced we have decided to try and sell our home at Chilton Park and move elsewhere. The prosecutor included, in her summing up, that we must, if we manage to sell, give 10% of our equity to the Park Owner.

The Magistrates' decided to give Garwood a conditional discharge for 12 months together with a three figure sum in Court Costs, and advised him that should he offend again within the timescale he would be bought back to court to face sentencing for both the offence he had pleaded guilty to and any other offences he commits.

The Park Owner, Mrs Dawn Pickering, has never advised me of any action that she has taken against Garwood even though I have told her on various occasions that Garwood has used both obscene language and severe verbal threats against myself and other residents.

Could it be that the Park Owner is only interested in reaping in yet another 10% if we sell  and move to avoid Garwood's harassment?

I will let you, the reader, have your own opinion on that!
Park-HELP-Line  "Hail The Unsung Heroes"
Big hearted Insurance Broker Paul Baker thanked the volunteer operators of Park-HELP-Line by treating them to lunch at the beautiful Queens Hotel Cheltenham in recognition of their wonderful service.   The Help Line Operators give of their time on a daily basis and have helped hundreds of park home residents who have called with a multitude of problems.  They get nothing out of this, apart from knowing they have helped so many people they are never likely to know.  Sadly, we have now lost one of our operators and therefore have a vacancy to fill.  If you think that you might like to join our friendly team, please contact Sonia McColl at phojc1sm@gmail.com
Please don't delay if you have a problem, pick up the phone and call Park-HELP-Line on 02038466601.
We are of course very grateful to Paul Baker for his sponsorship of the Help Line and if you should need a no obligation quote for your park home insurance, why not give him a call on 08000385033 - you have absolutely nothing to lose and you might be pleasantly surprised as he will give a 15% discount to all Justice Campaign Members.
Lord Ted Graham.  Our President, Lord Ted - who is now living in a care home - continues to keep in touch with all that we are doing.  He is a wonderful man and always send his best wishes to all park home residents.  Lord Ted is eager to hear how our fight for the 10% review and the change from RPI to CPI is progressing and I will be sending him a copy of this Newsletter along with our best wishes for his continued well being.
AWAITING THE DECISION:

For many, there is an important case currently listed at the Upper Lands Chamber that is a result of an appeal by a national park owner. In circumstances where a park owner has afforded short term leases of a park to another company, the UT is to decide, whether or otherwise, the lease should become transparent to anyone who may have a legitimate interest in its terms, whether they be residents or prospective buyers and their legal representatives, In this case, the lease is for six years, meaning that it does not need to be recorded at the Lands Registry which would otherwise offer access, the minimum period being seven years.

The question was first formally raised earlier this year by Tony Turner, founder and lead of the Park Homes Policy Forum by way of an application to the First Tier Tribunal. This had followed the discovery during a pitch fee review, that the licensed owners of the park were not the freeholders of the land but leaseholders, where all pitch fees and other payments were credited to a third company, appearing, he said, to establish that the leaseholder-operator of the site would be unable through lack of direct funding to meet its repair and maintenance obligations, or even any financial penalties and costs if imposed as a consequence of any Local Authority action resulting from any license breaches. Also, that whilst ` in perpetuity` agreements were precisely that, the Act seemingly confirms that if the owners` ( in this case the owner being the leaseholder ) estate or interest is insufficient to enable him to grant an indefinite period, the rights afforded to the operator do not extend beyond the date when the lease expires. In referring to the lease, it was put to the First Tier Tribunal that its terms might throw some light upon what is intended at the end of the lease and also its objectives, where the freeholder of the land would otherwise have been entitled to operate the site without. The Tribunal, also referring to the` in perpetuity` clause that would override any alternative term, nonetheless agreed and issued directions for a copy to be provided after redacting any commercially sensitive detail. However, the company that is the leaseholder afterwards appealed the decision, the determination of the UT to be made in due course.

30th January 2020


RPI to CPI - Official Answer to all  that our JUSTICE Campaign fought for.

Viscount Younger of Leckie, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, has provided the following answer to your written parliamentary question (HL588):

Question raised by Lord Teverson on behalf of a PHOJC member.

Question:
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they intend to change the annual indexing of park home pitch fees from the Retail Price Index to the Consumer Price Index. (HL588)

Tabled on: 20 January 2020

Answer:
Viscount Younger of Leckie:

The Government will introduce the primary legislation necessary to change the inflationary index that is used to review pitch fees for park homes from the Retail Price Index (RPI) to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) as soon as parliamentary time allows


This commitment is part of a wider package of measures designed to improve protections for park home residents and increase professionalism in the sector.


Date and time of answer: 30 Jan 2020



27th January 2020





10% Commission Mentioned in Court Case

By D.J. Iles

On January 23rd 2020 a case was heard in Taunton Magistrate's Court where the payment of the 10% commission on the resale of a  park home was mentioned.

The case concerned a charge of assault by beating, which was supported by both CCTV evidence and an independent witness, was bought against a home owner in Chilton Park, which is a residential site on the outskirts of Bridgwater in Somerset.

The charge was that the defendant, David Garwood, a resident of Chilton Park, had assaulted me in October 2019.

Garwood admitted the offence, which was was the latest in a long line of threats against both myself and my disabled wife. My statement was read out by the prosecutor in the court, she  mentioned that because of the problems we have experienced we have decided to try and sell our home at Chilton Park and move elsewhere. The prosecutor included, in her summing up, that we must, if we manage to sell, give 10% of our equity to the Park Owner.

The Magistrates' decided to give Garwood a conditional discharge for 12 months together with a three figure sum in Court Costs, and advised him that should he offend again within the timescale he would be bought back to court to face sentencing for both the offence he had pleaded guilty to and any other offences he commits.

The Park Owner, Mrs Dawn Pickering, has never advised me of any action that she has taken against Garwood even though I have told her on various occasions that Garwood has used both obscene language and severe verbal threats against myself and other residents.

Could it be that the Park Owner is only interested in reaping in yet another 10% if we sell  and move to avoid Garwood's harassment?

I will let you, the reader, have your own opinion on that!





PHOJC
The National Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign
President:  Lord Graham of Edmonton
Founded by:  Sonia McColl OBE
Tel: 07903024612

10th January 2020

The Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP

Dear Minister

Reference:  The Governments promised Independent Review of the 10% Commission Charge payable to a site owner on the sale of a park home and the promised annual increase change from RPI to CPI on the pitch fee.


Over the last four years members - numbering many thousands -  of The Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign have worked tirelessly to:

1. obtain an Independent and transparent review of the 10% commission charge that includes sight of the Site Owners financial accounting and in the event that the 10% is reduced - that nothing is added to the pitch fee.

2. that the annual pitch fee increase should be changed from RPI to CPI which is inline with pension increases.

Park Home Residents from every part of our country have spent of their pensions to travel to London; attending Our Three Nations Rally,  two separate PHOJC rallies,  mass meetings with MP's in the Palace of Westminster  and the deliverance of a petition to Downing Street signed by in excess of 30.000 Park home Residents.  Many present - and sadly past MPs - have supported us on this journey.

We have waited patiently while the Government was heavily burdened by BREXIT negotiations and have supported your party in the election.  Therefore - as founder of the JUSTICE campaign, I now ask, that you as Minister of Housing,  honour the promises of the Government and bring forth the legislation needed to make the change from RPI to CPI on the annual pitch fee and instigate the much needed review if the 10% commission charge as laid out above.

I look forward to receiving your reply,  so that I may pass it to the membership.

Yours Sincerely 

Sonia McColl  

..................................................................................................................................................

cc. Rt. Hon Boris Johnson MP,  Sir Christopher Chope OBE. MP, Sir Peter Bottomley MP,  Richard Drax MP, Michael Tomlinson MP, Rt. Hon Grant Shapps MP,  Steve Brine MP, Rt Hon Robert Buckland QC. MP.

THIS CAUSE IS EXTREMELY IMPORTANT TO THOUSANDS OF PARK HOME RESIDENTS AND I WILL THEREFORE BE POSTING THIS LETTER ON THE JUSTICE CAMPAIGN WEB SITE AND TO INDIVIDUAL MEMBERS REQUESTING THEM TO COPY AND SEND IT TO THEIR CONSTITUENCE MP.

11th December   2019



15th November  2019


PUBLISHED  BY THE PARK HOMES POLICY FORUM


DOES MR BEST THINK HIS CUSTOMERS ARE THIS STUPID ?
( WYLDECREST`S INVENTED WRITTEN STATEMENT)
We have previously made general references to Wyldecrest`s newly invented `Written Statement` but now reproduce below some relevant extracts, as set out in section 4.
We are again urgently asking all residents at Wyldecrest Parks as you are best able, to advise anyone viewing a new home at their parks that they should NOT pay any deposit or sign ANYTHING until such time as they have been provided with a copy of Wyldccrests`s final agreement and passed this on to solicitors familiar with Park Home Law.
SECTION 4 - YOUR OBLIGATIONS
To pay the estimates Service Charge for each year of the term in equal monthly installments, of the reasonable costs and expenditure, including charges, commissions, premium, fees and interest, paid or incurred, or deemed to have been paid or incurred by US in respect of....
providing and undertaking the Services, and performing our other obligations in this agreement. Employing the necessary people to perform the Services and our other obligations under this agreement including, but without limiting the generality of the above, remuneration, payment of statutory contributions and reasonable health, pension, welfare, redundancy and similar ancillary payments, and providing work clothing....
the expense of making, preparing, maintaining, rebuilding and cleaning anything, such as ways, roads, pavements, sewers, drains, pipes, watercourses. party structures, party fences and other conveniences used for the park in common with any other pitches.....
administering and managing the park and preparing statements or certificates and of auditing the expenses incurred in performing the services....
providing and performing any reasonable necessary service for the better and more efficient management and use of the park and the comforts and convenience of its occupants not specifically mentioned in this agreement.....
if in any year of the Term the amount of the Actual Service Charge incurred by us is more than the Estimated Service Charge paid by You, we will bill you for the shortfall, and You will pay us the shortfall within 28 days of the date of the bill.
And so it goes on, also stating in section 10: We reserve the right to further review the pitch fee to take account of changes in legislation ( including but not limited to …..the maximum rate of commission payable on the sale of your mobile home. We shall deliver each occupant a written notice specifying the amount of the new pitch fee and the basis upon which it was calculated. The new pitch fee will be payable 28 days after the written notice is sent to you.
COMMENT: So, not content with the highly lucrative revenue streams provided under the terms of the Mobile Homes Act, the incorrigible bragger Best and his associates, hope to offload all of their current and future operating costs onto the backs of those hapless residents who may be persuaded to enter into such commitments, or are unwitting of the consequences.
Please note; If you know of anyone who has fallen for this latest trickery, they should take immediate legal advice.



1st October  2019



If you want to view the

Park Homes Debate 
Westminster Hall. 1st October 2019.  Please click on the link below



Draft Minutes of the APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group for Park Homes) can be viewed
by clicking on the link below


27th September 2019

Park Homes Debate
On Tuesday 1st October 2019
9.30am in Westminster Hall.
It will be led by
Sir Christopher Chope  and
is focused on the rights of people
living in mobile homes.
You can possibly watch it on
the Parliament Channel




6th September 2019



Private Eye (this week)

Read all about it 

Site owner running roughshod .........









26th July 2019





BBC  Radio 4 You and Yours. 26/7/2019



Interview on the link below received from BBC of Sonia McColl regarding the CPS decision not to prosecute after her Home was stolen due to lack of evidence.



The Police informed that they felt there was enough evidence to put before a trial jury - notwithstanding that Sonia was told that her home was stolen because “She had walked over site owners and deserved this”. But obviously none of that matters or is relevant to put before a trial jury!!!



Where is the JUSTICE in this country 

that many in the park home sector - along with Sonia - are crying out for?




22nd July 2019



FIT AND PROPER TEST FOR PARK HOME SITES.





WE`VE FINALLY GOT SOMEWHERE. 

 (Please read in full and  RESPOND to bring in FIT AND PROPER

you have until September to do it.

I will be responding on behalf of PHOJC



STAGE ONE


https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/mobile-homes-a-fit-and-proper-person-test-for-park-home-sites.




22nd July 2019




Update of Interview on BBC Radio 4 You and Yours.



This had to be cancelled last Friday due to important coverage of the

 GRENFELL Protest on that day.



I have been told that Park Homes will be aired

this coming Friday 26th July at 12.15

I have also been told they are hoping that someone from the Ministry will also speak.



20th July 2019





18th July 2019





You and Yours  info Update Re interview scheduled for12.15 on Friday 19th July





I’m just writing to let you know that we are planning to run your interview next week now.  This is only because there is a Grenfell style protest I am covering for tomorrow’s programme and the producer considers two housing style stories wouldn’t really work in the same programme.  Having said that he does really like your interview, and told me to tell you how well you come across.



The protest is today and so will get coverage and so is harder to postpone.  



All the best



BBC Radio 4

You and Yours



17th July 2019






Update from your JUSTICE Campaign  on APPG Minutes. 

 MY STOLEN HOME 

 and my BBC Radio 4 interview to be broadcast  at 12.15 on Friday 19th July.



The draft minutes of the APPG (all party parliamentary group for park homes) held on the 1st July 2019 can be read in full on the link below.



You will see that we are due conclusions from the consultation within a few weeks and Fit and Proper by the end of the year.



The 10% Commission Charge; campaigned for by  all members of our Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign is still awaiting the promised research.

However, I could obtain no sensible answer as to why the change from RPI to CPI  should also have to wait.  Certainly it should not be linked to the Independent Review of the 10% Commission - with nothing added to the pitch fee - that we called for. 



Please read the full draft minutes on the link  below.






MY STOLEN HOME



The Crown Prosecution Service has decided NOT to charge the two people arrested for conspiracy to steal my home - even though, Police felt there was enough

evidence to put before a Trial Jury.  



Following an invitation to the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership's reception at Westminster on Monday of this week , I was interviewed for BBC Radio 4 You and Yours programme.  For almost 18 months I have had my hands tied and my lips sealed regarding this case - but now, within reason I can speak.  Obviously, I do not know how much they will air - but I certainly did not hold back on my thoughts.  The Minister was also going to be invited to speak - but as yet I don't know if that happened.    I am not writing below about my feelings on this subject, but if you want to hear  details of my case and my thoughts about it and our Justice Campaign:  Please listen to the interview, I am told it will be broadcast on Friday 19th July on BBC Radio 4 You and Yours programme at 12.15.  which has details of the £1000 reward that Paul Baker has kindly offered for information that leads to the arrest and charge of the thieves who stole my home.    



Park-HELP-Line



This continues to grow and we are now looking to engage yet another volunteer operator.  Our Operators are exceedingly busy.  Do an excellent job and are helping so many people.  Of course we could not do this without the support of Paul Baker of pbinsurance who pays for our phone lines - and we continue to offer him our sincere thanks for his generous contribution that enables us to help so many Park Home Residents .



As I have said many times.  Please don't sit and worry.  Call our Park-HELP-Line on 02038466601.  It is a Free, Friendly and Confidential Service and we can also direct you to a solicitor who will give initial free help, if needed.



Best Wishes and thank you for your support

Sonia


16th July 2019




After my attendance at the recent APPG I heard that we are all due to hear the

results of the consultation in a few weeks - plus Fit and Proper by the end of the year.  However, 10% and RPI to CPI not included yet.  I will post draft minutes when available.

You Meanwhile, please read excellent article below 





19th June 2019





Dear Justice Campaign Supporter.



Summer News Letter



The last meeting of the APPG (all party parliamentary group) took place on the 22nd October 2018.  Draft minutes of that meeting can be found at:




The next APPG meeting will be held on July 1st 2019.     Attendance is strictly by invitation only and I will be attending this meeting on behalf of our Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign (PHOJC.)



10% Commission Charge. and RPI to CPI



At the time of writing; all that you have long campaigned for is still hanging in the ether - although we were promised action in the Spring 2019, later moved forward to the Summer.  Therefore, we still await the promised research into this charge.  I will update you, WHEN I hear more.



In the draft minutes, which can be read at the link above; the Minister informed  that  " the legislative intention was to change RPI to CPI " that, " the Ministry would seek to evaluate the impact of the change," and  "We are minded to change."  We were also informed that  the RPI to CPI change would be considered along with the 10% commission research so that the impact on park economics could be addressed in the round."

    

What does all that mean?   I think we all have a fairly good idea of what that means and quite probably it will be a long time before we see action (instead of words) regarding all that we campaigned for.  Whilst residents are acutely aware of the vast sums that the site owner receives in commission (not once, but initially on the sale of the home and then every time the home is sold he/she receives commission on his/her own initial profit. 



Certainly the Industry will actively lobby government and with their resources will look to show researchers many reasons why the site owner needs your equity; notwithstanding, their need to increase pitch fees if any decrease in the commission fee is the outcome.   That is why; when the research begins, we must make a concerted effort to show why and how the 10% commission charge is affecting us.  Certainly, a careful balance will have to be struck if all are to be satisfied and when the research time arrives  I hope we can agree a strategy and make a unified approach from  Park Home Residents..



Meanwhile, we must await the outcome of the APPG on 1st July 2019 when more information may be forthcoming.  I will of course inform of any important changes that may or may not occur and you will be able to read - in due course - the draft minutes of the July 1st Meeting on the above link.  You will also be able to find it by going to our Justice Campaign Web Site at www.parkhomeownersjusticecampaign.co.uk     Go to the APPG heading, scroll down and you will find the link. 



Fit and Proper:   We still await the outcome on this subject along with many other important issues that affect park home residents. 



Differing Mobile Home Law in England and Wales



Many residents contact me because they have heard that some laws appear to be different in Wales  This is correct, but while England and Wales are similar in many respects; there are key differences.  The Fit and Proper Person test only applies in Wales and importantly, the maximum pitch fee increase in Wales is CPI and not RPI as it continues to be in England.  (Crazy isn't it.  All Park Home Residents should be treated equally.)


A Wish Come True



On a more up-beat note. our President, Lord Graham of Edmonton has had a personal wish granted after placing his wish on the wishing tree at his local care home.

Please click on the link below to see the official write up and lovely pictures of Lord Ted.   We, of course wish him all the best for a healthy future and send him our thanks for all that he has done for park home residents.   I keep in regular contact and will be sending Lord Ted a copy of this news letter.



Wouldn't it be wonderful if we had other peer's or MP's who were following in Lord Ted's and Dame Annette Brooke's footsteps and showing the same compelling dedication to the welfare of the home owners in this sector   https://www.whtimes.co.uk/news/knebworth-care-home-resident-visits-house-of-lords-1-6043742


.

Park - HELP - Line  -  who now have seven operators around the country -  are waiting to take your calls.





UNSUNG HERO's - who are the Operators of Park-HELP-Line send a sincere thank you to our sponsor Paul Baker of PB Insurance Services; who, on the 12th June 2019 treated the seven volunteer operators of Park-HELP-Line to a rare day off  !!!!





Paul, the sponsor of Park-HELP-Line - in recognition of the wonderful service  they provide - joined our team and treated them all to a wonderful lunch at the beautiful Queens Hotel in Cheltenham.  The seven operators travelled from Wales and the North, South, East and West of our Country.





These unsung hero's who give of their time on a daily basis, have helped hundreds of Park Home Residents who are feeling low and have been at their wits end.  This also includes introductions to our Solicitor Sam Mayer of Henriques Griffiths who provides an initial free appraisal for those who are directed to him through our help line.





These wonderful volunteers give hope, help and compassion to the many residents who call our Help Line Number and they receive nothing - apart from knowing  they have helped so many people they are never likely to meet.  There are not too many people in this world that give of themselves for no financial benefit and I have nothing but praise for their devotion and they truly deserved the treat and the gift that Paul gave them.





If you should have a park home problem - or feel worried and have no one to whom you can talk. Don't wait a moment longer.



Call the Park-HELP-Line on 02038466601



Believe me.  These wonderful people will listen and unless you wish to give it - will not even ask your name.





In addition, I believe in helping those who help us; so, if you should be looking for an insurance quote for your park home.  Why not give Paul a call on 0800 0385 033 - and if you mention that you are a member of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign - you will get a 15% discount!!



Park Homes Policy Forum face book page

There continues to be many problems occurring within the industry and much is being discussed on the above Forum that is run by Tony Turner.  You can also email Tony at ferrier57@btinternet.com

If agreeable, you can  sign the Petition set up by Tony to reduce the council tax paid by park home owners.  The petition closes on 15th July 2019 and can be reached at:
My Stolen Home

Two men were arrested and at the time of writing, the case still awaits the decision of the CPS (Crown Prosecution Service) on any charge that may be brought.

I am not at liberty to discuss the case; however, once again I would like to thank all those kind residents, without whose help I would have remained in a very dark place.  Your kindness has meant so very much and I do not have adequate words to thank you.  Although it remains quite unbelievable that a 40' home can just disappear, I don't expect to see my home or its contents again but I hope that one day Justice will be done and those responsible will be brought before the courts.  I will update when I have any news.

Best Wishes to all and I hope the summer will bring many sunny days for you all.
Sonia


17th June 2019



President of the JUSTICE Campaign,  Lord “Ted” Graham of Edmonton has recently received a wonderful surprise.



Arrangements were made for Lord Ted; - who now resides in a care home - to return to the House of Lords.



Click on the link below to read about his wonderful day and view some great pictures of Lord Ted



Our JUSTICE Campaign sends him very best wishes and our grateful thanks for all he has done for park home residents.



13th June 2019

UNSUNG HERO's

who are the Operators of Park-HELP-Line send

A Sincere Thank you to our sponsor Paul Baker of PB Insurance Services.

Today, 12th June 2019 the seven volunteer operators of Park-HELP-Line
enjoyed a rare day off!!!

Paul, the sponsor of Park-HELP-Line - in recognition of the wonderful service  they provide -
joined our team and treated them all to a wonderful lunch
at the beautiful Queens Hotel in Cheltenham.
The seven operators travelled from Wales and the  North, South, East and West of our Country.

These unsung hero's who give of their time on a daily basis, have helped hundreds
 of Park Home Residents who are feeling low and have directed them to sources of help.
This includes introductions to our Solicitor Sam Mayer who provides an initial free appraisal for those who are directed to him through our help line.

These wonderful volunteers give hope and compassion to the many residents who call our Help Line Number
and they receive nothing - apart from knowing  they have helped so many people they are never likely to meet.
There are not too many people in this world that give of themselves for no financial benefit and
I have nothing but praise for their devotion and they truly deserved the treat that Paul gave them today.

If you should have a problem - or feel worried and have no one to whom you can talk. Don't wait a moment longer.
Call the Park-HELP-Line on 02038466601
Believe me.  These wonderful people will listen and unless you wish to give it - will not even ask your name.

In addition, I believe in helping those who help us; so, if you should be looking for an insurance quote for your park home.
Why not give Paul a call on 0800 0385 033 - and if you mention that you are a member of the
Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign - you will get a 15% discount!!

Sonia McColl OBE  Founder of Park-HELP-Line and the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign.

1st June 2019





Park Homes Policy Forum
Published by Tony Turner ·
· 

BEST EXPLANATIONS - TAKE YOUR PICK !
This week, the Cornish Times gave over two thirds of a page to reporting the fears of residents at St Dominic Park, following an application by the apparently insolvent Wyldecrest Parks (Management ) Ltd ( last published accounts: net worth £-5K ) for a Certificate of Lawful Development within the boundaries of the currently 80 home semi and retirement park. The published response from Wyldecrest was headed `Park Home Site Owner moves to allay fears`
In this, Mr Best told the Cornish Times “ A rumour can start at the end of one park and change completely by the time it reaches the other end. A mobile home park is like any small housing development. You can`t just put more homes on it, it requires permissions. Any expansion is way down the line. If we applied for planning permission and we got it, then, of course we`d put more homes on - but to be honest, I don`t` think there`s room.”
What Mr Best did not mention is that the so called `rumour` emerged from his own staff and what is understood to be the identification of up to fifty available spaces for new homes, whilst in referring to ` required permissions`, Mr Best neglected to mention the number of other homes he has installed on or near other of their sites without obtaining prior permissions, several local authorities having since served Planning Enforcement Notices requiring the removal of homes. These apparently include councils such as Vale of White Horse, London Borough of Havering, Cheshire West and and Chester Council, Northumberland County Council, previously Ashford Borough, whilst it is possible that more planning enforcement notices will be served in respect of homes installed without planning permission in or near their parks in Mid Suffolk, Conwy and Runnymede.
Nor, in referring to “a rumour that can start at one end of the park,” did Mr Best mention that the Spring 2019 edition of his `Wyldeliving` publication, that St Dominic Park is promoted as a `New Development`
In taking your pick of Mr Best`s so far explanations, we provide the link below to the story published within the last days by the Lancashire Post...............

28th May 2019



How to prove that Park Site Owners are NOT Above The Law. Following the amendment to the Mobile Homes Act 1983 made in 2013, all Site Owners were required under the Mobile Homes (Site Rules) (England) Regulations 2014, to issue new site rules which took account of the changes to the law. Many of their old practises had to stop and discretions that had been applied in the past were no longer permitted . However in a recent First Tier Tribunal hearing a home owner was able to use the new regulations to prove that there are occasions when discretion can still be used. The Owners of the Park Home Site in Bridgwater, Somerset had, in 2015, informed one of the residents that the doctor and other medical professionals could park on the road outside their home and then in 2016 she said that nobody, including Doctors, Nurses or Carers, was allowed to park on the road by the residents' home, but had to park in the visitor's car park which was over 400 meters away from the home. 

This decision came about due to the severe interference by a nearby neighbour, aided and abetted by the previous park manager, both of whom used foul and offensive language to verbally abuse anyone who parked on the road. Although the residents complained to the Owner, they were ignored and the no parking ruling for medical professionals came into force. This made life extremely difficult for the resident, who is registered disabled, to receive any domestic or medical assistance, as she could not find anyone who would walk the distance involved and did not think any medical professional should waste their time walking from the car park in all winds and weathers. Each and every time the facts were put to the Owner of the park the response was, “while I sympathise with your needs I cannot make exceptions to the rules as it would not be fair on the other residents and there would be no point in having rules”. How strange it was therefore that two other residents on the park were, at the same time, receiving visits from carers (sometimes 3 cars at a time) several times per day, and when they parked on the road outside the homes that they were visiting neither the Site Manager nor the Site Owners approached them to tell them not to park on the road. As it was obvious that the park rules were only being applied directly to the disabled resident and her husband they felt that their only choice was to withhold their pitch fee increases and so did this for the next two years. Three months into their second year of not increasing the pitch fee the new site manager called to ask if they had forgotten to increase it but the residents said that they were not going to pay the increase as they were in dispute with the owner, who would not answer their latest letters, and so they wanted the owner to take them to the Tribunal to sort it out. Another few months went by and eventually the relevant notification came from the Tribunal with a date for the hearing. The residents were delighted as finally they could state their case to the Judge who listened sympathetically and then informed the owner's solicitor, who was seated together with the owner, that the site rules regarding parking were ambiguous and, as he suggested, to go away and write them again. During the hearing the resident produced a copy of a document headed Schedule 1 Proposal Notice, which is the official form for proposing site rules to residents following the 2013 Act. He pointed out to the Judge that under the heading 'Other Matters' the form clearly states that the Park Owner cannot exercise any discretion within the rules except when a the owner grants a right to an occupier to accommodate that occupier's disability. It was obvious from the mumblings between the Site Owner and her solicitor that they were either unaware of this power of discretion or had chosen to disregard it. 

The Site Owner could have chosen to ignore the recommendations from the Judge and just waited for the ruling on the pitch fee increase. However, probably on the advice of her solicitor who, by then, had realised that the home owner was willing to use the Equalities Act 2010 to claim that they were being subjected to indirect discrimination on the grounds of disability. The Equalities Act requires the Site Owner to make reasonable adjustments if it is required to support a disability. Within days of the Tribunal hearing, well before the Tribunal's ruling was delivered, the home owner received a letter from the Site Owner's solicitor stating “with immediate effect and until further notice Carers, GP and other medical professionals may park on the road in the vicinity of your home whilst they are visiting you to provide care and medical support”. So, following this tribunal hearing the Site Owner is now saying they can park!! Eventually the Tribunal issued their determination which stated that there was no significant decrease in the amenity of the site relating to parking rules to allow the Tribunal to have regard to that in determining the pitch fee. Therefore the pitch fee was set to the amount proposed by the Park Owner at the review date. The residents were quite happy to pay the pitch fee increase which amounted to £3.88 per month. The Park Owner, who employed a solicitor from Exeter, for the whole case, including a morning inspecting the park site, followed by an approximate 20 mile drive to Weston Super Mare for the tribunal hearing which lasted one and a half hours and, as we all know, solicitor's fees are not cheap, the Owner will have a four figure bill to meet. The solicitor had obviously spent many hours researching other old tribunal cases which, the Judge said, were of no credence to this particular case and dismissed them offhand. Did the Site Owners think they were above the law relating to the Equalities Act 2010? 

If they did it was a very costly mistake! If there are any registered disabled park home owners who feel that the park rules put them at a disadvantage over able bodied residents, then ask the Site Owner to make a reasonable adjustment to the rules to cover the disability. Like the above example the allowance of parking close to the home for medical professionals should be made, other examples include guide dogs or assistance dogs on site where the is a no dog rule and if the occupier needs a live in carer, because of their disability, that carer should not have to meet the age criteria of the site. Should the site owner refuse to make the reasonable adjustments then he/she could be found guilty of disability discrimination and have to pay out a large sum in compensation. The two residents who attended the hearing had previously spent time researching their facts and only wish the Park Owner had done the same. It would have saved them much distress and the Park Owner thousands of pounds and all for her to gain £3.88 a month but lose her superior status.

15th May 2019

Park  homes ravaged by fire at St. Dominic's Park Cornwall - owned by Wyldecrest.  See write up below









Published by Tony Turner · 1 min · 

PARK FIRE – 14TH MAY 2019
Cornwall Fire and Rescue Services have today confirmed that Fire appliances from Callington, Liskeard and Saltash along with the support of the Water Carrier from Devon attended an incident to a fire involving LPG at St Dominic Park, Harrowbarrow, at 0925 on Tuesday 14th May. On arrival the first crew reported a large fire involving LPG to the rear of a property in Harrowbarrow and used two breathing apparatus, two hose reels and one main jet to fight the blaze. Fire personnel remained on the site until early evening and a fire investigation is now taking place to determine the cause. The residents are grateful for their fastest possible response.
At one time, there were fire hydrants around the site of 80 homes but the previous owners allowed this to fall into disrepair and disuse some years ago. There is no fire serviceable fighting equipment, no fire alarm system and no assembly points if a fire breaks out and poses wider risks.
The site is owned by Wyldecrest Parks and this risk was one of the reasons documented by residents in majority opposition to their current Application for further development at the site of 80 homes. Among others, this also referred to the failed sewerage plant and an electrical infrastructure that independent electricians have reportedly refused to touch due the alleged risks.
The Residents Association (which Mr Sunderland stated in letters to all residents does not represent their interests with Wyldecrest ) had hoped to raise these issues but have since abandoned direct attempts as Mr Sunderland declines to reply to any correspondence.
The residents are now calling for an urgent meeting with Cornwall Council executive to discuss these and other issues
( It was recently reported that Alfie Best of Wyldecrest Parks increased his personal wealth in the last year alone by some £30 million ! )

3rd May 2019

From  Sonia McColl 


Commission Charge in Wales.

Many residents have contacted me to ask why I had no input in the letter below on behalf of our campaign’s 30,000 membership.

As it was The Park Home Owners Justice Campaign that led the campaign by residents and organised The Three Nations Rally and other rallies and meetings regarding the 10% Commission Charge, I can understand why they  would wonder why the people’s input was ignored.

The truth is:  I WAS NOT ASKED.
Which tells me that the people’s input was not desired.

Sonia McColl


Ein cyf/Our ref JJ/05672/19 Neil Hamilton AM Assembly Member for Mid and West Wales National Assembly for Wales Cardiff Bay Cardiff CF99 1NA Neil.Hamilton@assembly.wales

25 April 2019 Dear Neil, 

Thank you for your email of 28 March regarding the Judicial Review of the decision to reduce the residential park home commission rate. The Welsh Government is committed to ensuring everyone can access suitable, good quality and affordable homes. This includes those who live, or may choose to live, in a park home. The decision made on 5 June 2018 to reduce the park homes commission rate from 10% to 5% over a period of 5 years was subject to Judicial Review proceedings. 

The Claimants were granted permission for Judicial Review of this decision in January 2019. As the statement made on 27 March makes clear, I have decided to re-take the decision afresh taking into account all relevant matters, including information which has come to light during the course of the proceedings. With regards to the information referenced in the statement, one aspect of this is the views of national resident’s associations expressed in a joint letter received from the British Holiday and Home Parks Association, the Independent Park Homes Advisory Service, the National Association of Park Home Residents and the National Caravan Council after the pre-action protocol has been issued. In this letter the associations indicate they had concerns in relation to the affordability of any increase in pitch fees as a result of the decision. 

It also became clear during proceedings that there was a significant disparity between the claimant and the government on some financial matters considered during the decision, including whether 20 hours of owners time should be factored in when considering viability of parks and also whether sales from new home should be taken into account as part of site owner’s income. The importance of these issues warrants the gathering of further financial information. My concern throughout consideration of this matter has been to balance the interests of both residents and site owners. It is therefore important to ensure all information available is carefully considered. 

My officials will take this matter forward as quickly as possible with a view to keeping costs to a minimum. I will then be in a position to confirm the preferred course of action. Yours sincerely, Julie James AC/AM Y Gweinidog Tai a Llywodraeth Leol Minister for Housing and Local Government 

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



CARE HOME COSTS AND PARK HOMES:
“Do you know anyone whose park home is on the market for sale to fund residential or nursing care home fees?
If so, you should be aware that it is likely that the financial assessment (otherwise known as the means test) has been incorrectly completed by Local Authority Social Services Department. Steene Law Ltd Solicitors have contacted us to say they are happy to explain how it is possible to argue that the park home does not have to be sold, certainly not to pay care home fees.
Steene Law Ltd is a solicitor’s practice that only deals in Adult Care Social Law. Individuals who need to go into care, either because they are suffering from memory impairment (typically dementia) or due to frailty and have been told by the hospital that they cannot go home and have to go into a residential care home, are suddenly faced with being told that they have to fund their own care. This maybe untrue!
In England anyone who has assets over £23,250 is called a self-funder and is expected to pay for their care. Steene Law Ltd understand that your mobile/park home can be excluded from the means test irrespective of what the financial assessor says and offer a FREE 30-minute telephone conversation to see whether your park home would fall within the type of case that we would accept.
If you are having to sell your park home because you have been told that you need to do so to fund care fees, that may not be true! It might mean the difference between losing your home and a lifetime of savings or being able to pass on an inheritance to your loved ones.

You can call www.dementialaw.co.uk (click image below) or a FREE for a chat on 0203 653 0625

27th April  2019


Written by Tony Turner

Park Home Policy Forum

WYLDECREST AND THE EQUALITIES ACT:
Wyldecrest Parks say: “All our Residential Parks throughout the UK are designed to give our residents peace of mind and provide a safe and secure environment. So if you’re looking for that perfect place to spend the golden years of your life, then look no further than Wyldecrest Parks!
BUT NOT IF YOU ARE - OR BECOME DISABLED !
With no consultation with residents, the council or the emergency services and presumably because there is no requirement for them to do so on private land, several wheelchair and disability scooter users at a park recently acquired by Wyldecrest can no longer visit their close neighbours without an uphill detour.
With no pavements anywhere, their usual routes, this week blocked by heavy duty road strips. ( notably days after a pitch fee review Tribunal visit ) - And worse, the pleas of one severely disabled lady resident who explained that even travelling over them at the lowest possible speed when driven by her carer causes her severe pain have been ignored – and never mind the inevitable delays on a ten-acre site that will be caused to ambulances taking fragile or emergency patients to hospital, or those who need to use walking aids and are at risk from trips and falls
There is no point is raising this with Wyldecrest direct. Previous correspondence seeking clarifications or in pursuing basic legitimate enquires with Wyldecrest customer services, their legal compliance person ( secretary to Estates Director David Sunderland) and to Sunderland himself go entirely unanswered, whilst this latest event comes during another week of repeated calls for help from other Wyldecrest Parks, one referring to “bully-boy tactics” and writing to say “What was formerly an extremely pleasant estate has now become extremely unpleasant place in which to live”
No matter to Wyldecrest in this latest event that they have imposed indirect discrimination, described under the Act as “putting rules or arrangements in place that apply to everyone, but that put someone with a protected characteristic at an unfair disadvantage” and no regard for other provisions, which prescribe specific duties for service providers in respect of disabled people when it is clear that a rule or practice disadvantages them, going on to say “ A service provider has a duty to make reasonable adjustments where a provision, criterion or practice, or any physical feature of premises occupied by a disabled person, places that person at a substantial disadvantage compared with people who are not disabled.”
We cordially invited Mr. Afred Best and his front-man Estate Director, Mr Sunderland, to visit the site, so that they can be provided with wheelchairs and take up the offer to negotiate their way around the site.
FOOTNOTE: Our post reach between 30 March and 26 April was 5,100. Everyone can help by sharing this latest post as widely as you can. It will help send the message to prospective buyers of new homes to look beneath the advertised wonders of park home living and consider the ethos and practices of the many appalling ownerships, also noting that tomorrow, a well-run park could be sold to persons unfit to operate in any housing sector. `Follow` this page for more updates to come.





17th April  2019


Tribunal Bodmin  Court
17th April 2019

Yesterday, on behalf of our Justice Campaign I attended the above tribunal to show our campaign’s support for Tony Turner and the Residents of St. Dominic’s Park (recently acquired by Wyldecrest Parks) who were disputing a pitch fee review.

The residents of St Dominic’s Park were ably led by Tony Turner
who was supported by a packed court room of residents - many of whom spoke passionately about the subject matter and voiced their sincere appreciation of Tony Turner who has worked tirelessly in preparing their case.

I did try to speak in support of the residents and the many pitch fee problems that are reported to the Justice Campaign and our Park-Help-Line but sadly, Mr. Sunderland (who represented Wyldecrest) objected.  Similar objections were made that stopped residents (who had travelled from other Wyldecrest Parks) and wanted to speak.

Whilst the outcome will not be known for several weeks, Tony Turner and the residents of Wyldecrest Parks showed true grit.
Sonia McColl
PHOJC

12th April  2019


PARK HOMES included in the guidance crack down on ROGUE LANDLORDS
Press release:  Housing Minister unveils new guidance for local authorities to crack down on rogue landlords - new online support as part of government's commitment to give greater protection to tenants, and reform the private rented sector for the better.
Guidance:  Rogue landlord enforcement: guidance for local authorities - providing local authority enforcement officers with a central reference for guidance on tackling rogue landlords.

Guidance:  Landlord and tenant rights and responsibilities in the private rented sector - sets out the roles and responsibilities of both landlords and tenants when letting or renting a property in the private rented sector.


5th April  2019


Easter Newsletter from your JUSTICE Campaign

Dear Justice Campaign Member

Updates.

10% Commission Charge and RPI to CPI that we have campaigned for.

Many of you have heard of the latest decision in Wales to withdraw their earlier decision on the 10% Commission Charge. 

Following the Welsh decision, I have heard from many residents in England who now feel their campaigning efforts  have fallen on deaf ears and our Government will ignore all that they have campaigned for.

I can confirm that this is not the case and post the piece below from the relevant Government Fact Sheet. 

In summary, (taken from the Government Fact Sheet.  
 The Government will commission research to gather relevant 
data to enable a detailed assessment of the likely impacts of a 
change to the 10% commission on sales, 
on residents and site owners.

Certainly, this is unlikely to be in the spring as promised, but the latest that I have heard, is that it will take place in the summer.  When that eventually happens, I will let everyone know and will help (where I can) with any questions that you may be asked by the researchers.
With regard to the Welsh decision that is posted in full on the link below.  I am hearing that many feel this is just another withdrawal and the 10% will again be ignored and buried.  Again, I cannot guarantee that what I am saying is correct - but I have been informed by a reliable source that the Welsh decision was withdrawn because it would allow the site owners to make increases to the pitch fees.  Personally, I think this is correct and for the sake of many Welsh supporters of our Justice Campaign I am glad that this has been brought to light as I am sure they would not want additions to their pitch fees.

In England, our campaign has always said that we want a change to the 10% Commission Charge but WITH NOTHING ADDED TO THE PITCH FEE.  That is why, in our Three Nations Rally we never called for the 10% to be abolished - but for an Independent and transparent review of the charge with sight of the site owners accounting.  Hopefully, that is what we will get in the coming research; when, dare I say it! (the Brexit situation is dealt with.)
So that you may be fully updated please see the link below to read the latest from Wales on the withdrawal of their earlier decision on the 10% Commission charge in Wales.  
The link is also on the home page of our campaign web site at:
www.parkhomeownersjusticecampaign.co.uk

RPI to CPI that  we all campaigned for.

The Minister informed that these changes would be made and told me that it would be dealt with in the spring.  Although I cannot guarantee, I have since been told that it will now be the summer - so watch this space!!!
Not a perfect scenario and one has to wonder why it takes so long to bring about the changes, but at the very least Government have confirmed that it will take place.  (see excerpt from Fact Sheet below.)

The Government Fact Sheet says:  It will bring forward legislation in due course when parliamentary time allows to:
 a. amend and clarify the definition of a pitch fee and prevent the use of variable service charges in written  agreements; 

 b. simplify the complex and opaque company structures used by some rogue site owners to limit a resident’s    security  of tenure and avoid liability for any enforcement action;

 c. introduce a fit and proper test for site owners; 

 d. change the pitch fee review inflationary index from the Retail Price Index (RPI) to the Consumer Price Index (CPI).



Park-HELP-Line that is an offshoot of our Justice Campaign has continued to be very busy and its operators have taken many distressing calls from troubled residents.  All have been passed to areas that can offer help and I know that our Solicitor (who offers a free initial consultation) has helped many residents.  Paul Baker, of pbinsurance for park homes has continued his support and we are very grateful for his sponsorship of our telephones. Should you be wishing  to get a quote for your park home insurance why not chat to Paul.  You can call him free on: 08000385090 and if you decide to accept a quote you will get a 15% discount if you tell him you are a supporter of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign.

Importantly, Please don't sit and worry if you have a problem.  Just call one of our friendly operators on  02038466601    where you can be assured of a friendly voice, a sympathetic ear and the knowledge that we will do our very best to help you solve your problem.

WOULD YOU LIKE TO BE A Park-HELP-Line OPERATOR AND JOIN OUR FRIENDLY TEAM?
We are looking to enrol two further willing volunteers.   The only job requirements for these posts are:  that you are friendly, caring to others problems and genuinely want to assist residents who may be alone, suffering or afraid. Full guidelines will be provided to successful candidates and our team would be grateful for your help.  if you feel that you might like to join us.  Please contact Sonia onphojc1sm@gmail.com 

To all those who have contacted me about my stolen home.  The Police have done a wonderful job and two suspects were arrested - but we now await the CPS decision.  There is nothing more that I can or am allowed to say at this point in time - except thankyou for all your support and kind messages; plus, a special thankyou to the Park Homes Magazine and the free Park Home News who have advertised the loss of my home.  I am also very grateful to those residents who have reported  the coming of homes similar to my stolen home on their parks and to the wonderful gentleman who has made it possible for me to purchase a dog.   My best hope of finding the home and  bringing the villains who stole it to justice is from sightings by people living on parks, so if a home comes onto your park and you think it might be similar to my home, please contact me or crime stoppers.

My very best wishes to you all for a Happy and Peaceful Easter.
Sonia

27th March  2019



Please see the link below to read the latest  from Wales on their withdrawal of their earlier decision on the 10%Commission Charge.



26th March  2019




In loving memory of

Tony McColl

The ROCK behind our Justice Campaign.
My Husband, friend and soulmate.
Passed away 26th March 2013.
It was the worst day of my life (but when many others were celebrating our campaign victory.)
Sleep peacefully, to me you were simply the best
and I miss you so very much.
Sonia



6th March  2019



To all JUSTICE Campaign Members.
It will be our President “Lord Ted Graham’s Birthday on 26th March.
If you would like to send a card to make his day extra special,  please send to him c/o Knebworth Care Home,  59 London Rd, Woolmer Green, Knebworth, Herts. SG3 6JJ.


5th March  2019

PLEASE SIGN PETITION

To: Claire Perry the Minister for Energy

Reform the Re-sale of Electricity & Gas (guidance for resellers) 2002


28th February 2019

Westminster Hall Debate:   Residents of Leisure Park Homes.

There is a need for wider reform. Organisations such as the Park Home Owners Justice Campaign and the Park Homes Policy Forum have worked for years to expose the exploitation of park home residents, which is still ongoing. Park homes have been described to me as
“like leasehold bullying, but with criminal thuggery thrown in.”
We know that 62% of leasehold home owners feel as if they were mis-sold them; I would not be surprised if a similar, or higher, number of park homes residents felt the same way. Just as there are leaseholds with onerous ground rents, park home owners can be charged extortionate pitch fees that can increase rapidly each year. As with leaseholds, hidden clauses in park homes contracts can cause significant hardship down the line; residents have limited routes of redress when things go wrong, and any enforcement is often affected by a lack of transparency and opaque structures.
However, unlike the situation with most leaseholds, park home owners also report, as we have heard, experiencing or being threatened with violence and other illegal activity. We saw that most prominently in the disgraceful treatment of Sonia McColl, a leading campaigner for park homes reform. After campaigning for action on rogue park owners, Sonia had to sell her park home and move due to death threats. She then, astonishingly, had her entire home stolen while waiting for it to be delivered to her new site. She was made an OBE for services to society, but I think society has let her down. I asked her what issues she would like to raise with the Minister; she wants to know, first, when the consumer prices index instead of the retail prices index will be used to calculate the increase in pitch fee, and secondly when independent research will be done on the 10% commission payable to site owners on the sale of residence properties. She will be happy to share the Minister’s response with the 30,000 residents on her database.
To read the full  HANSARD report click on the link below.





Click this link to sign the petition to
"Reduce the council tax for people who live in park homes"
https://petition.parliament.uk/signatures/53562179/verify?token=2QG9CiZ2M169tQnGEK


10th January 2019


THE GOVERNMENT HAS PUBLISHED THE MEMORANDUM 
to the Communities and Local Government Select Committee 
on post-legislative assessment of the Mobile Homes Act 2013 (MHA 2013):




21st December  2018



Do you need help at Christmas?
As most agencies will be closed
PARK HELP LINE volunteers will be operating a reduced service.
If you have a park home problem
telephone 02038466601

and we will do our best to help.




29th November 2018
A message from Sonia
CRISIS at CHRISTMAS
Last year I was officially homeless at Christmas - but I was lucky.
That is why I am asking if you will
 give one more present this Christmas?
Will you make a donation to bring
a HOMELESS person in from
the cold? 
Being homeless with no security is frightening. Will you help to transform a life
 by reserving a place for someone at
CRISIS AT CHRISTMAS?
£28.18 could bring one person in from the cold for a week over  Christmas
where they will receive food, comfort, healthcare and special support
to transform their lives.
( or please donate whatever you can - no matter how small )
To donate online go to www.crisis.org.uk/baublegift
or call their freephone number on 0800 999 2080

Thankyou.



21st November 2018





 GOVERNMENT PUBLISHES BRIEFING PAPER
AHEAD OF A REVIEW OF THE 10% COMMISSION
Click on the link below to read the full briefing




1st November 2018




UPDATE ON SONIA'S STOLEN PARK HOME

It is almost one year since thieves stole my home and
I would like to congratulate and thank the
 Police
for quietly conducting a thorough investigation job.
Although I can not say more at this time
I have permission to inform that 
  TWO SUSPECTS HAVE BEEN ARRESTED
and both are RUI  (released under investigation)
AND THE INVESTIGATION CONTINUES.
Thank you to all who continue to ask for updates and

when allowed, I will let you know how it progresses.

23rd October 2018

Our National Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign
Dear Members and all Peers and MPs who have supported our campaign for an Independent review of the 10% Commission Charge and a change from RPI to CPI on the pitch fee.
Together we brought about a change in the law to stop Sale Blocking and now, together, we have achieved our goal and the future overall outlook for park home residents is far better than expected.
Yesterday, 22nd October 2018, on behalf of our Campaign, I attended the APPG for Park Homes at which the Minister Heather Wheeler MP spoke at length about the Government’s response to the Review of Park Home Legislation (links to enable you to read the complete summary can be found on the Home Page of our web site at www.parkhomeownersjusticecampaign.co.uk
You, the residents, have spent your time, money and effort to change the pitch fee review index from the Retail Price Index (RPI) to the Consumer Price Index (CPI.)
The Government have now written that they will  CHANGE THE PITCH FEE REVIEW INFLATIONARY INDEX FROM THE RETAIL PRICE INDEC (RPI) TO THE CONSUMER PRICE INDEX (CPI)”
Park Home Residents again spent their pensions, travelled to rallies and meetings in London and wrote many letters requesting an INDEPENDENT AND TRANSPARENT REVIEW OF THE 10% CHARGE.”  I should add at this point that together we asked for the Independent Review with sight of the site owners accounting because the abolition of the charge would have immediately failed. However, the 10% issue was fraught with problems from the outset, pushed under the carpet after being debated by MPs who called for an Independent Review, relegated to a working group, dropped from the official agenda of the Government’s Review of Park Home Legislation and rescued from the brink of disaster on many occasions.
When you asked in 2013 if we could do something about the 10% Commission Charge, I said that we would try.”  Yesterday 22nd October 2018 your efforts were rewarded, and the Government have said they will therefore undertake research to gather relevant data to enable a detailed assessment of the likely impacts of a change to the 10% commission on residents and site owners.”
At yesterdays meeting of the APPG I asked the Minister if the review would take into account the financial accounting of site owners and for her assurance that the research would include not only those site owners who own one or two parks – but those who own multiple parks.  From the Ministers response, I was satisfied that it would.  In due course the draft minutes of the meeting will be posted on the JUSTICE Campaign web site at www.parkhomeownersjusticecampaign.co.uk
Due to Brexit and the work involved it is sadly understandable that we cannot expect anything to  be done before the spring of 2019 - but thanks must be given to Sir Christopher Chope MP (who not only accompanied our party to Downing Street to deliver your petition – but also tried at length during yesterday’s meeting to speed up the process.)
As supporters, you can all be justifiably proud as our JUSTICE Campaign has again achieved what it set out to do.  I will leave the JUSTICE Campaign Web Site up until the research is started in the spring of 2019 because independent researchers will be gathering the opinions of site owners and park home residents.  If and when I received information regarding this research, I will post it on the web site and send it to all members of the JUSTICE Campaign as it is of vital importance that you have your say. Following this, our campaign will close and all your personal data will be destroyed as we will have done all that we can and the final outcome will be decided by Government.
However, now that our campaign is over and we have succeeded in all that we set out to do, may I take this opportunity to thank all those who have supported us – in particular, the unknown people who have made our Justice Campaign the household name that it is:  John (who prefers to remain anonymous) but has built and managed our web site for nine years and thousands of residents from every part of our country who have become valued friends, have made banners, travelled, rallied and spent their pensions to further our campaign.
I have said on many occasions that without allies from within, you can never expect to get through the doors of Parliament.  Therefore,  on behalf of PHOJC my sincere thanks goes, to Lord Graham of Edmonton, the now retired Dame Annette Brooke OBE, former MP, Natascha Engel, Grant Shapps MP, Sir Peter Bottomley MP, Sir Christopher Chope MP, Lord Best, Steve Brine MP, Robert Buckland MP, Members of the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and so very many more who assistance over the years has been greatly appreciated and without whose help we would not have got this far.
We are also indebted to Paul Baker of PB Insurance for his support of our campaign and the road shows that he organised.  Tony Turner of the Park Homes Policy Forum for his unstinting support and friendship.  The Park Homes Magazine for its coverage – with particular thanks to Alex Melvin and Anne Webb.  LEASE, Mr. Alan Savory MBE of IPHAS and Mr. Brian Doick MBE of NAPHR and Sebastian O’Kelly, Martin Boyd and Jim Fitzpatrick MP of the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership.
Little did we realise when our campaign was born in 2009 that it would grow and succeed to this level.  Together we put our heads above the parapet.  Sometimes suffered the consequences but that is what it takes and together we have brought about change.  THAT IS TRULY THE POWER OF THE PEOPLE.
PHOJC has achieved what it set out to do and is now closed but the Park-HELP-Line that it founded and is supported by Paul Baker remains and its Friendly Volunteer Operators can be contacted on 02038466601
I feel so very privileged and proud to have known and become friends with so many wonderful people and thank you all for your belief in our JUSTICE Campaign, our cause and what you have done.  Together we made it happen and many Park Home Residents in the future will benefit because of you.
With Much Love and Best Wishes for the Future
Sonia
Sonia McColl OBE

Founder of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign


22nd October 2018



Below are links to the Government’s response to Part 2 of the Call for evidence.

On behalf of PHOJC I am attending the APPG for Park Homes today.  The Minister will be addressing the meeting.  Full report will follow as soon as appropriate.

1.  Review of park homes legislation - the document sets out the government’s response to the two part review of park homes legislation.

It sets out proposals to strengthen the existing legislation to:

- improve residents’ rights
- give local authorities more enforcement powers to tackle rogue site owners
- work with the sector to raise awareness of rights and responsibilities of residents
- develop and disseminate best practice amongst local authorities.

https://www.gov.uk/government/ consultations/review-of-park-h omes-legislation-call-for-evid ence

https://www.gov.uk/government/ consultations/review-of-park-h omes-legislation-call-for-evid ence-part-2


2.  Mobile home residents are to receive greater protection from dishonest site owners seeking to make a profit at their expense, thanks to plans announced today (22 October 2018):

https://www.gov.uk/government/ news/new-plans-to-stamp-out-ro gue-mobile-home-site-owners


23rd September  2018



A message for all who have donated to the appeal for “A Home for Sonia”

Dear Friends
I write to thank you all for the love and support that I have received from my amazing family, friends and all the wonderful people and park home owners here and abroad who have helped me since my home was so cruelly stolen because of my work for the JUSTICE Campaign.
 I will forever be eternally grateful to each and every one of you and especially Sir Peter Bottomley MP, Sebastian O’Kelly, Martin Boyd and Jim Fitzpatrick MP of the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership who; upon hearing of my plight, immediately set up the “Home for Sonia” appeal.  My dear friend Tony Turner of the Park Home Policy Forum; knowing that my husband had passed away, has called and supported me through the darkest of days and acted as a conduit for those park home residents unable to access the Leasehold Knowledge donation site; while Paul Baker of PB Insurance did his utmost to advertise my stolen park home and set up a reward for information leading to the capture of the villains.  Lord "Ted" Graham has kept in constant touch and has been like a father figure and I am so grateful for the support of all while I struggled to  attend London meetings (to fight the residents corner) and keep the JUSTICE Campaign going until a decision could be made by government on our RPI to CPI and 10% Commission Charge Campaign.
Letters and emails have poured in from lovely park home residents across the country; some have added me to prayer circles and others have sent their love and support and offers of accommodation in their homes.  Please know that I can never adequately express how grateful I am to you all for your kindness; that will never be forgotten.
I have been able to send personal thanks to all those who sent cheques to Tony but I don’t know the names of the amazing people who donated to the Leasehold Knowledge Appeal.  If you are one of them and reading this letter, please accept my heartfelt thanks for your very kind and generous gift.
On the recommendation of the Police I have been relocated to another county for my safety and I hope that you will understand that I will not be giving out my new address – but please know that I am so thrilled and feel very lucky to now be able to rent a little home of my very own and because of your generous donations which totalled £15.105 pounds I am able to equip and furnish it.  Everyone needs their own space and front door – but you don’t realise how important this is until your home is stolen from you.
Many times, during the last year, when I have been very low; I have sat in my little car (when all was quiet outside) in the realisation that apart from the wonderful people who gave me refuge and somewhere to sleep – my car was the only shelter that I owned.  However, I was lucky to have such a wonderful family and friends that were willing to shelter me, but my heart goes out to the many homeless people on our streets and I can’t help but wonder what awful situation has happened to them.
One day it would be wonderful to report that the thieves have been caught and Justice has been done.  Someone somewhere is living in my home.  Sleeping in my bed, cooking on my cooker, sitting on my sofa and watching my TV – and there are people out there who know who they are.  If that is you, please call the Police or crime stoppers and if it leads to a conviction, you can claim the reward – because these people are wicked thieves.
However, importantly, once again my very very sincere thanks to all who have helped and supported me.  I now have a lovely little home.  I am very happy and contented and I have moved from a very dark place to a bright sunny world and I hope to get a dog.
With love to you all
Sonia

PS.  I will of course report to you all when news of our RPI to CPI and 10% Campaign is announced.

19th September  2018


Park-HELP-Line
IS GRATEFUL TO
Mr. Sam Mayer
of
Henriques Griffiths  (Solicitors)
who will give an initial
FREE
consultation to  Park Home Resident callers that are 
referred by
Park-HELP-Line
and are experiencing Park Home Problems.
ANY FOLLOW UP WORK MUST BE PAID FOR.

Park-HELP-Line
is sponsored by Paul Baker of PB Insurance Services
Tel:  0800 038 5090

Full Details of Henriques Griffiths Solicitors can be found on the link below.




1st September  2018

Park Homes Warm Home Discount Scheme is now OPEN!

Are you eligible?
If you live on a Park Home site and your electricity is billed by the site owner, you could be entitled to a £140 cheque towards your winter electricity bill. For information and to apply visit www.parkhomeswhd.com.

Last year we awarded over 4,000 cheques to Park Home residents, don't miss out again, funds are limited!
What is it?
Now in its third year, this Government backed scheme offers a £140 cheque to Park Home residents who's electricity is billed by their site owner.

Managed by Charis and approved by Ofgem, the scheme is endorsed by both the National Association of Park Home Residents (NAPHR) and the Independent Park Home Advisory Service (IPHAS).
Apply Now

Registered in England and Wales No. 4762902
Registered Office: Charis Grants Ltd, Trinity Court, Trinity Street, Peterborough, PE1 1DA

18th August  2018

The JUSTICE CAMPAIGN'S 10% Commission Charge and RPI to CPI Campaign

Since 2013 our JUSTICE campaign (with the help and active support of residents from all parts of our country) has lobbied, rallied, organised a Three Nation Rally, presented petitions to Government and hundreds of residents have attended our meetings with MPs in the Palace of Westminster.  Our request has always been  for a full and transparent review of the sales commission in England with sight of the site owners certified accounting - and if a change is made that nothing is added to the pitch fee.

The decision of the Scottish government has been to retain the 10% and the Welsh government is likely to phase in a reduction to 5% over a five year period.

In England.  Although, I fought very hard - as a member of the working group - to have the 10% commission charge included in the 2017 review of the effects of the 2013 Act; after our JUSTICE Campaign's staunch ally   Dame Annette Brooke MP  OBE retired and MP Natascha Engel was not invited to attend the meetings, I basically stood alone within that group on the subject of the 10% commission charge and as the BH & HPA were in opposition and with no other back up from other members, no recommendation to include the 10% Commission charge  in the review of the 2013 Act could be put forward.  Therefore, the review does not include the question of sales commissions; however, although outside of its scope, and following the help of hundreds of campaign members who wrote to their various MPs, this Government has agreed to give it further consideration separately from this review.  I believe, this has come about ONLY because of the effort that members of the JUSTICE campaign have  made.

In 2013, I was asked if the JUSTICE Campaign could do something about the 10% Commission Fee.  I said we would try - and we have all certainly done that.  In fact, if it had not been for the effort that park home residents have put in, the 10% would have disappeared and turned to dust under the proverbial carpet.  Now, the fact is that we can do no more on this subject.  It is in the hands of the government and we have to wait and hope that justice is done and in England we get the Independent and transparent review that JUSTICE Campaign members have requested and if the 10% is changed - as we have campaigned for -  there is nothing added to the pitch fee.  I am led to believe that the result of the review will be announced at the end of September - we shall have to wait to see if that is correct.

Our campaign to change the inflationary index used for pitch fees from RPI to CPI is included in the coming review.  Let us hope that this is successful and a change is made because it is wrong that our pitch fees increase by RPI when our state pensions only increase by CPI.   Again, Residents have done all that they can and we await the government proposals following its 2017 two part call for evidence in its review of the effects of the 2013 act - and whether this will include all that is needed to restore the lives of park home owners to what they should always have been.  

The new Park Homes Policy Forum that was formed by Tony Turner in January 2018 fears that this latest review will not go far enough in facing and resolving all the known problems, from the first licensing of park owners, through to providing home owners with a greater say in the way in which their park is managed. The PHPF is growing rapidly and has accrued its own national membership to as best ensure that the 28 page report and proposals for changes that Tony has submitted to government in late 2017 are taken into account and if not, that any shortfalls are returned for further review. The JUSTICE Campaign has seen that report and fully supports all of its recommendations.   In addition, it thanks Tony for his active support of our campaigns.

The position of the PHPF is that ALL the current loopholes and anomalies that encourage malpractices must be addressed once and for all, not least because it is unlikely that there will be a further review of park home legislation for a very long time. Your JUSTICE Campaign agrees with this and full supports this initiative.

The PHPF works quietly in the background, not only in its support of  your JUSTICE Campaign but also its Park-HELP-Line.  Tony, is a formidable opponent of rogue ownerships and has pro-actively supported the positions of very many park home residents for a decade.

If you are not already a member of the Park Homes Policy Forum ( which like your JUSTICE Campaign, has FREE  membership) you might feel that you would like to join before the coming review is announced as I am assured that Tony will challenge anything that is wrong and against the wellbeing of the park home resident.  You can  join using the contact form on its website and the two links to the PHPF can be found below.


Members of the JUSTICE Campaign have  fought an amazing campaign over many years.  They have written copious amounts of letters to MPs,  spent their pensions to come in support of our London rallies on many occasions.  Built wonderful banners, dressed up, marched through the streets - and still found time to attend and speak respectfully in the Palace of Westminster.  This has all been noticed by the MPs and Peers in attendance and because of them all, our JUSTICE campaign has become a name that is known throughout Westminster and the Industry.

As I have said many times.  It is very easy to complain behind closed doors - but it takes courage to put your heads above the parapet. show your face publicly and get through the Palace of Westminster doors and bring about debates in the House of Commons - but the park home residents who are members of the JUSTICE Campaign have done just that.  To win you must have the help of those already inside.  That help is not easy to attain but our JUSTICE campaign has succeeded on many occasions because we have been strong and have always acted in a respectful but firm manner and to my knowledge, what we have achieved together has not been done on this scale by any other organisation that is related to Park Homes.  In fact, whatever the future brings, residents can all be proud of what they and their Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign has achieved. 

I will of course publish the results of the coming review to all members when they are available - but in the meantime:  if you have any problems,
please call the Park-HELP-Line on:   02038466601 

This voluntary Help Line that has been set up by your JUSTICE Campaign; is sponsored by Paul Baker of  PB Insurance Services for Park Homes and its friendly operators will do their very best to make sure that you find the best way to deal with any park home problems.  In fact if you need a quote for your park home, why not give Paul a call on:  0800 038 5090  as he does so much for park home residents.

Many people have asked; but sadly, I have to report that there is no positive news on the whereabouts of my stolen home.  However, I send my sincere and heartfelt thanks to all who have sent donations to the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership,  to Tony Turner who has acted as a conduit for that appeal and the Park Homes and Holiday Caravan Magazine and Paul Baker for publishing the story of my stolen home -  and for their steadfast help to our JUSTICE Campaign.

I hope that the coming review will make things better for all park home residents but I think it would be wise and would certainly recommend residents to join Tony Turner's FREE Park Homes Policy Forum - who have vowed to fight for your rights.

I have made many wonderful friends through the Justice Campaign and I send my best wishes and thanks for all your love and support - in all matters - over the last 10 years.
Sonia
Sonia McColl OBE

Founder of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign and Park-HELP-Line



13th August  2018


SITE OWNERS LOSE FOURTH APPEAL:
THE SCATHING COMMENTS OF A HIGH COURT JUDGE

Below you will find the link address for the written High Court determination of HHJ Cotter QC following the latest appeal by Jeffrey & Barbara Small in their endeavours to expand their sites.
This latest lost Appeal follows those recently similarly dismissed at other of their sites, we understand including: Woodlands Park (Tetbury St Mary ) Battisford Park (Plympton ) and Planet Park, (Delabole) Finally, some of the chickens born of the eggs of audacity, are finally coming home to roost !

( It is always worth reading and filing the various outcomes of Appeals, as residents can always use any relevant reasons for dismissals if they ever need to challenge similar circumstances )
To read it, click on the below:


29th July 2018


This link will lead you to the draft minutes of the APPG for Park Homes

held on the 16th July 2018

27th July 2018

I have been told by the BBC
 that the segment below on You and Yours 
has been pushed back to next Friday August 3rd.  
They will confirm next week that it is running and

 I will post on the Justice Campaign's face-book page.




Our JUSTICE Campaign has been informed that

BBC   YOU & YOURS - Radio Programme

will be discussing the COMMISSION CHARGE

On Friday 27th July 2018


I do not know the exact time.

19th July 2018





18th July 2018


APPG
All Party Parliamentary Group for Park Homes

A meeting of the Group took place
on Monday 16th July 2018 
at which our JUSTICE Campaign was present.

When completed by the secretariat; the minutes of this meeting
will be available on the following link and I will post a copy
to all JUSTICE Campaign Members.

I can confirm to all members that I voiced the 
not approval of  our JUSTICE Campaign 
to the appointment of the industries trade body (the BH & HPA) 
as the Public Enquiry Point.



14th July 2018

BBC Tonight  13/7/18

Commission on the Sale of Holiday Homes and Residential Park Homes
by Sarah Corker.
My report went out on Look North tonight - East Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. Here is a link. It focuses mainly on holiday static caravans but does reference residential park homes too and shows our
Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign.

Look North (East Yorkshire and Lincolnshire),

 Evening News: 13/07/2018: www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b0b980jj via @bbciplayer

6th July 2018

BBC Look North
Are Calling all Holiday and Residential Park Home Residents

If you are not happy with the money 
you have to pay site owner on the sale of your home
and you live on a Holiday or Residential Park 
 in Yorkshire or Lincolnshire
Please see the message below and reply to the number
if you are happy to be filmed.


‘My name is Sarah Corker and I am a reporter for BBC TV in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. I am interested in hearing from people who own caravans on either holiday homes or permanent parks who are concerned about the extra charges they have to pay park owners when they sell their vans and have to transfer ownership. You must live in Yorkshire or Lincolnshire. I am putting together a TV report for BBC Look North on these rules and charges that are costing van owners thousands of pounds. Please could anyone who would like to take part in this report and do an interview with me email sarah.corker@bbc.co.uk or call me on 07711349077. Ideally I would like to do the filming next week (Wed or Thursday but can be flexible). Thank you.’ 

Sarah Corker.

BBC TV Reporter.

3rd July 2018

WE NEED ALL LOCAL AUTHORITIES TO: 


WHO WILL BE THE NEXT TO FOLLOW TELFORD AND WREKIN'S LEAD.
where residents in that area can report rogue landlords.
FULL DETAILS ON THE LINK BELOW.



Mobile Home Bill on its second reading. A PRIVATE MEMBERS BILL from Sir Christopher Chope OBE

https://services.parliament.uk/Bills/2017-19/mobilehomesandparkhomes.html



MOBILE HOMES. MINISTRY OF HOUSING & LOCAL GOVERNMENT
Written Question regarding level of Sales Commission charged on Park Homes.


To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what conclusions he has drawn as a result of his call for evidence of 12 April 2017 on park home regulation and the level of sales commission charged on park homes.

The Department published the summary of responses to this call for evidence on 28 November 2017. The Government response will be published in the autumn. While we are aware of the concerns amongst those living in park homes about the commission rate payable on the sale of a home, this was out of scope of the review and will therefore be considered separately.


Thursday 14th June 2018



The Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign
UPDATED 10% Commission Information


Dear Member of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign
This letter is really important if you wish to see the changes that we have campaigned for to the 10% Commission Charge.  
Policy Briefings have just been published by Government on the 10% Commission Charge.  They confirm that the English Government has now said that although separate from the current review of the effects of the 2013 Act, it now intends to give the issue further consideration.   That is not good enough,  we need to ensure that a full Independent and Transparent Review with sight of the site owners accounting is put in place.  This has already happened in Wales and their Government has listened.  We must ensure that we get the deal we need in England.  To do this we must keep the pressure up.  I can write to your MP, but it will be ignored as I am not their constituent.  Therefore, if we are to succeed, I need to ask you to please send the letter below and the attached revenue statistics to your own constituency MP with your added comments.
Many thanks and best wishes
Sonia
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
LETTER TO SEND or email  TO YOUR CONSTITUENCY MP.   If you do not have their surgery address, please send it to your MP at  House of Commons, London
Date:
Your Address:
Dear
The latest briefings to MPs at: https://researchbriefings.parliament.uk/ResearchBriefing/Summary/SN07003  published on Wednesday 13th June 2018 in regard of Mobile (Park Homes) 10% Commission on sales does not adequately cover the request of some 40.000 park home residents whose petition was delivered to Downing Street before they took part (at Westminster) on the 21st March 2017 in the Three Nations Rally organised by the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign..
SUMMARY OF BRIEFINGS

  • The briefings make regular reference that the Commission Charge is currently set at 10% of the selling price.  That reference is wrong.  The Commission Charge is currently set at up to 10% of the selling price.  Although rarely conceded, this indicates that the 10% is not an amount needed by the Industry to sustain itself.  At no time has it been convincingly established that it is needed at all – but the Welsh government has conceded that it should become  5%.



The purpose of the initial Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign’s rally at Westminster was to ask government to instigate an Independent and Transparent Review (with sight of the site owners financial accounting.)   This culminated in the back-bench debate of the 30th October 2014 when MPs unanimously called for an Independent and Transparent Review.

 Question put and agreed to.
Resolved,

That this House calls on the Government to set up a review of the current fee of up to 10 per cent of the sale price of a park home payable to the park home site owner.

The unanimous decision of MPs at that debate was ignored by the Minister who set up a Working Group to make recommendations on the inclusion of the 10% commission charge in the coming review. 

·         POLICY BRIEFINGS
 In 2015, the Government set up a Park Homes Working Group “to identify evidence of poor practice where it exists, and investigate how best to raise standards and further tackle abuse”. The Working Group, which included national resident groups and industry trade bodies, considered the issue of the 10% commission charge, but was unable to reach a consensus.

As a member of the Working Group, the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign tried extremely hard to get the unanimous will of MPs upheld but there could never have been any agreement between the JUSTICE Campaign and the BH & HPA (the industries trade body) on the 10% commission charge and therefore by the action of the Minister in passing this to a working group of opposing sides the 10% commission charge and  the unanimous will of MPs was swept effectively under the carpet.

At the APPG meeting on Wednesday 13th September 2017. It was quoted in the minutes that:
“The Chairman asked when the APPG would know whether the Minister would take on board a further review of commission. Mr Skeoch said that this was not in the scope of Part 2 of the review of the Mobile Homes Act 2013, but Ministers were aware that there was a call for a review of commission and that would be considered when reviewing the responses. If there was anything to be done on commission, there would be a separate consultation. “

·         The latest policy briefing now confirms that it intends to give the issue further considerationThat is not good enough as again we descend from consultation to consideration!!  The unanimous vote by MPs for an Independent and Transparent Review must be up held – or much time, money and effort by many MPs will have been totally wasted.

As a Park Home Resident, and your constituent, I now make it known to you that I want Government to honour the will of MPs at the 30th October 2014 debate and to set up an Independent and transparent review of the current (up to 10%) commission charge (that includes sight of site owners accounting.)   Mr. Skeoch has said this will be considered when reviewing the responses; I inform you as my constituency MP that I want you to make sure that a separate consultation leading to a thorough Independent and transparent review of the 10% commission charge does take place in 2019.

I have also attached the anecdotal statistics of the financial revenue of a series of parks.  This anecdotal evidence has been collected from Park home Residents across our country who are best placed to know the revenues that are being collected on individual parks and the amount of homes sold and their approximate sale price.  These also indicate the level of maintenance carried out on the parks and holding companies where they exist.  These have been collated and produced by the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign. The complete document that names the parks and their owners have been sent to all MPs by the JUSTICE Campaign but on the copy attached the names have been redacted.

Although anecdotal, these figures show the vast income of some site owners and we must not forget that since the last investigation, certain site owners have increased the amount of sites they own by 100% (the largest owning 50 plus and increasing.)

The 2013 Mobile Homes Act has brought about some improvement – but the 10% commission charge must be addressed if the Industry is to survive and Park Home Owners are released from the entrapment they now face by not be able to move due to the loss of 10% equity and for those needing special assistance, the reduced quality and quantity that can be afforded if  they have to move into care.

As my constituency MP; I inform you that I want your help and assurance that you will do your best to represent my needs and ensure that a thorough Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge takes place in 2019.

Yours Sincerely


.......................................................................................................................




LKP helps raise £14,682 for park home champion Sonia McColl OBE

 

The following has been received by Sonia McColl OBE

Dear LKP and all the wonderful people who have helped me,
Your amazing gestures of kindness have raised £14,682 pounds and I can not adequately say how grateful I am to you all. However, I hope you will all know how much it helps when a vital part of your life is stolen and you feel very alone.
Through my work for the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign, I have met, heard from and experienced some of the pain, fear and forms of retribution that many elderly park home residents have been subjected too. Normal people from all walks of life; who, in their golden years have had the misfortune to encounter greedy heartless site owners who see them as a cash cow and bleed them dry. Of course there will be some decent site owners (but not many) and it is thoroughly appalling that in 2013 Government were speaking of hitting the rogues hard in their pocket – where it hurts – to rid the industry of the rogues and yet still – 5 years later – the mighty defy and the weak suffer.
Let’s hope that a coming review of the mobile homes act 2013 does something to eradicate the problems and that the Park Homes APPG follow the lines of LKP and that we have regular meetings and importantly the BH & HPA are relegated to a guest organisation and an independent secretariat is appointed.
Once again my sincere thanks to all who have helped me. Despite the threats received and being told that my home was stolen because “I trampled over site owners to stop sale blocking – and I deserve this”. They will not win as I will make sure that the JUSTICE Campaign does all that it can in the time remaining before the coming review to get an Independent and transparent review of the 10%Commission Charge payable to site owners on the sale of a home and the increase to the ground rent changed from RPI to CPI.
Well done LKP. Please accept my very sincere thanks for all that you have done to help me and I hope one day to tell you that I have a home.
Sonia





Tuesday 12th June 2018



I have been reliably informed that the announcement below regarding
 the 10% Commission Charge
 HAS RATTLED THE INDUSTRY.
  It would appear that the problem lies with the wrong people in the Industry. 
 Let us hope that the announcement below will bring some realism to the sector
 and bring them to the table in a constructive frame of mind.
Meanwhile:
Please copy the statement below and send to your
constituency MP, asking him/her to question the Housing Minister

and bring this up in the House.

.............................................................................................


Congratulations to the sensible and pro-active Welsh Government.

Will Westminster NOW  properly address

the 10% Commission charge or must all

Park Home Residents move to Wales to get JUSTICE ?

STATEMENT 
BY
THE WELSH GOVERNMENT


"It is my intention to reduce the commission rate to a new maximum level of 5%. This will be done by reducing the commission rate by one percentage point each year over a period of five years. The regulations to achieve this will be subject to the scrutiny of this Assembly by the affirmative procedure. I will bring forward regulations at the earliest opportunity in the New Year."





TITLE
Changes to the Park Homes Commission Rate
DATE
5 June 2018
BY
Rebecca Evans AM, Minister for Housing & Regeneration

Shortly before recess, I published the summary of responses to our consultation on the park homes commission rate and outlined my intention to reduce the maximum rate.

I am pleased to be able to provide Members with further details about the pace and rate of change and of the wider actions I propose to take to support the park homes sector.

I would like to thank everyone who took the time to respond to the consultation and the financial analysis work – there were almost 400 responses.

I would also like to thank the site owners who shared financial information with our independent financial analysts.

Members will be familiar with many of the arguments on both sides of this debate. I am sure that we all want to ensure viable, well-managed sites continue to offer an attractive lifestyle to people who choose to live in a park home.

The issue of commission rates on the sale of park homes is one where views remain polarised. It has been debated for as long as people have used park homes as a permanent residence. In the 1960s rates were typically around 20%, reducing to their current rate of 10% in the 1980s. Over the last 40 years, the sector has been transformed – park home living today bears little resemblance to park home living in the 1960s.

Establishing a consensus about the way forward has not been possible because views are so polarised. And gathering sufficient evidence on which to base a balanced decision has not been easy.

I have deliberated long and hard and I have challenged my officials and the sector to provide more and better evidence and analysis to ensure we find a balanced and proportionate way forward which best supports park home living.

The evidence we now have supports the view that the value of a park home is a combination of the value of the home plus the pitch on which it is sited. A park home on its own costs less than one already sited, particularly if located on a well-run, attractive site with good facilities in a sought-after location. The costs to site a home can be significant. This has been a fundamental part of the argument in favour of the commission rate over the years.

It is clear that the current commission rate impacts significantly on people who own a park home. For some, the loss of significant equity from the sale of their homes is becoming a barrier to being able to sell and move on to alternative accommodation or accommodation which is more suitable for them. Commission may also be deterring potential buyers from purchasing a park home as they worry about the implications of losing 10% of its value if they need to sell in the future.

This poses a risk that park home living may become less attractive and cease to offer an alternative lifestyle choice.

The independent financial analysis, carried out for the Welsh Government, shows that commission is an important element of income for site owners, especially for smaller sites.

Any decision about changes to the commission rate must therefore balance the potential benefits and risks to both parties – park homeowners and the site owners.

If a site was to become no longer viable, the owners would need to consider how to change their business model in order to make it sustainable, usually by seeking an increase in pitch fees. The ultimate risk is that unviable sites close, leaving park homeowners without a pitch and having to re-locate their homes. This can be a complex and costly arrangement and homes without a pitch can have a reduced value.

I am committed to ensuring everyone can access suitable, good-quality, secure and affordable homes. Reducing the maximum commission rate will help to remove the financial barriers for residents who either want or need to sell. It will also help to ensure that potential buyers are not put off buying a park home because they are worried about how it will affect them, should they need to sell in the future.

However, I am mindful of the need to avoid placing sites at risk of closure whilst also seeking to protect residents from steep and sudden increases in pitch fees.

It is my intention to reduce the commission rate to a new maximum level of 5%. This will be done by reducing the commission rate by one percentage point each year over a period of five years. The regulations to achieve this will be subject to the scrutiny of this Assembly by the affirmative procedure. I will bring forward regulations at the earliest opportunity in the New Year.

I believe this approach strikes a reasonable balance in protecting the interests of all parties.

Reducing the commission rate gradually will help reduce the risks to the viability of some sites by providing site owners with time to adjust their business models to reflect this change. I accept that this adjustment may include increases in pitch fees for some.

I have considered carefully the calls from some to use powers in the 2013 Act to restrict any potential increase in pitch fees but have decided against this course of action.

This process has highlighted a range of much wider issues relating to alleged poor practices by some site owners and variations in the implementation of the Mobile Homes (Wales) Act 2013.

I intend to issue refreshed information about park home living, focused on delivering accessible and clear guidance to all parties. Working with the sector, I will develop best practice materials and will look at how we can strengthen the role of LEASE in providing advice.

I will work with local authorities to ensure they adopt consistent approaches to site licensing and enforcement.  We have a fantastic example of collaborative working in the private rental sector with Rent Smart Wales as the lead authority. I will explore what we can learn from this model that might benefit the residential park home sector. 

Llywydd, we all want to see viable, well-managed sites, which offer an attractive lifestyle choice for those who choose park home living.


I believe a phased reduction in the commission rate, supported by improvements in information, advice and support and consistent standards and adherence to the current legislation  can help deliver just that.


Sunday 3rd June 2018



ONE LUCKY WINNER 

HAS BEEN SELECTED FOR FREE HOME INSULATION.

LETTER RECEIVED FROM PRESTIGE ENERGY.
Good Afternoon,

Firstly, our apologies for the slower than planned update, as with many projects sometimes things don’t go fully to plan and take longer than intended to bring together. We at Prestige Energy want to give a big thank you to everyone that responded to the original posting, and particularly to Sonia for working with us to spread the word about the free wall insulation opportunity.

Several homes were surveyed and we then evaluated if the homes were suitable for the insulation and we were able to complete the work on the dates required by the material supplier. Based on this, a lucky resident has today been selected and their home will be insulated during the course of June.

Sadly, this was only available for one home which means the offer is no longer available. However, we may have future opportunities that are similar to this and will attempt to spread the word in a similar way as before if we do.

Our team always aims to help wherever possible, if you do have any queries or questions regarding insulation or energy efficiency then please contact support@prestige-energy.co.uk and we will do our best to assist where we can.

Kind Regards,

The Prestige Energy Team




 signature email




Wednesday 30th May 2018

 Mobile Homes and Park Homes Bill 2017-19

Type of Bill:
Private Members' Bill (Presentation Bill)
Sponsor:
Mr Christopher Chope

Progress of the Bill

Bill started in theHouse of Commons

  1. House of Commons
    1. 1st reading
    2. 2nd reading
    3. Committee stage
    4. Report stage
    5. 3rd reading
  2. House of Lords
    1. 1st reading
    2. 2nd reading
    3. Committee stage
    4. Report stage
    5. 3rd reading
  3. Consideration of Amendments
  4. Royal Assent

Last event

  • 1st reading: House of Commons1st reading: House of Commons (no debate) | 05.09.2017

Next event

  • 2nd reading: House of Commons2nd reading: House of Commons | 06.07.2018

Latest Bill

This Bill is being prepared for publication.

Latest news on the Mobile Homes and Park Homes Bill 2017-19

This Bill is expected to have its second reading debate on Friday 6 July 2018.
This Bill was presented to Parliament on Tuesday 5 September 2017. This is known as the first reading and there was no debate on the Bill at this stage.
This Bill is a Private Member’s Bill. These are often not printed until close to the second reading debate. If the text is not yet available here and you wish to know more about this bill please contact its sponsor, Mr Christopher Chope.

Summary of the Mobile Homes and Park Homes Bill 2017-19

A Bill to require the use of published criteria to determine whether mobile homes and park homes are liable for council tax or non-domestic rates; to make provision in relation to the residential status of such homes; to amend the Mobile Home Acts; and for connected purposes.

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Keep up to date with the progress of Bills going through Parliament. Sign up for email alerts or use our RSS feeds.

Related information

Guide to the passage of a Bill

Find out what happens at each stage of a Public Bill’s journey through Parliament with the Passage of a Bill guide.

When does a Bill become law?

Explanation of what happens after Bills have been passed, and when laws may change.


Monday 28th May 2018


The Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign



HAS SENT THIS EMAIL TO THE PRIME MINISTER.  HOUSING MINISTER.  EVERY MP AND DCLG





Dear Member of Parliament



Please do not ignore the email below.  It is of the utmost importance to thousands of Park Home Owners who need you to act now and demand that Westminster is not left again in the wake of the Welsh Government.



ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.  Westminster and a variety of Housing Ministers have ignored the 10% Commission Charge for too long.   Please assert your position as a Member of Parliament and demand that park home owners in England are treated fairly and NOT THE SUBJECT OF UNJUST DISCRIMINATION. 





WELSH HOUSING MINISTER DECLARES



PHASED REDUCTION TO


PARK HOMES 10% COMMISSION CHARGE



WHY DOES WESTMINSTER CONTINUE TO IGNORE



ENGLISH CAMPAIGNERS



AND THE WILL OF MPs as quoted in HANSARD

(park homes debate 30th October 2014)





Question put and agreed to.


Resolved,

That this House calls on the Government to set up a review of the current fee of up to 10 per cent of the sale price of a park home payable to the park home site owner.

….…………………………..

WRITTEN STATEMENT


BY



THE WELSH GOVERNMENT





TITLE

Publication of Summary of Responses to Consultation: The Park Home Commission Rate
DATE
24 May 2018
BY
Rebecca Evans AM, Minister for Housing and Regeneration



I am pleased to announce the publication of the summary of responses to the consultation on the commission rate payable on the sale of a park home. I have also published the independent review of financial information from site owners.



There is a clear and consistent divide between the views of residents and park owners, with most residents supporting the reduction or abolition of the commission paid, whilst all site owners wish to see it retained at the current maximum rate of 10%.



The summary outlines the next steps following this extensive exercise. Following consideration of the views and evidence presented, I am setting out my intention to begin a phased reduction of the commission rate over a period of time.



I also intend to take forward a range of proposals designed to support good management in the sector and to ensure that those buying and selling park homes have access to clear, consistent information to support their decision making.



I will make an oral statement in due course.



The summary of responses and financial review are available here: https://beta.gov.wales/park-homes-commission-rate






…………………………….



Over the last five years supporters of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign have worked tirelessly, attended rallies in London, delivered petitions to Downing Street, had meetings with MPs (many of whom have been in complete agreement that a change is needed to the 10% Commission Charge that is paid to the site owner when a home is sold,) written countless letters to Ministers and MPs BUT STILL FIND THEMSELVES TRAPPED IN THEIR HOMES.



WHY?  Because after giving the site owner 10% of their equity from the sale of their home they can only afford something inferior to what they already have and if they need to sell to go into CARE the loss of 10% of their equity seriously curtails the amount and quality of care they can afford.



As said earlier; enough is enough.  The outcome of the Review of the Mobile Homes Act (which has intentionally left out the 10% Commission Charge is promised  for the Autumn.  Your action to demand the Independent Review of the  10% Commission Charge is needed now because this subject WILL NOT GO AWAY.



Yours Sincerely
Sonia McColl OBE
Founder of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign and Park-HELP-Line


Friday 25th May 2018


Well done WALES and all Residents who campaigned.
Let us Hope that all those who were part of our Three Nations 10% Campaign in England
receive this kind of news - or something better - from our Government.
 Hello Sonia,
                     In Wales we appear to be a step closer to reducing the commission rate, our new Minister Rebecca Evans promises a reduction but is very vague as to the exact figure.
                                                        Best wishes from us all,   ( have redacted the name and address of the sender and the park)
                                                                
WRITTEN STATEMENT

BY

THE WELSH GOVERNMENT




TITLE

Publication of Summary of Responses to Consultation: The Park Home Commission Rate
DATE
24 May 2018
BY
Rebecca Evans AM, Minister for Housing and Regeneration


I am pleased to announce the publication of the summary of responses to the consultation on the commission rate payable on the sale of a park home. I have also published the independent review of financial information from site owners.


There is a clear and consistent divide between the views of residents and park owners, with most residents supporting the reduction or abolition of the commission paid, whilst all site owners wish to see it retained at the current maximum rate of 10%.


The summary outlines the next steps following this extensive exercise. Following consideration of the views and evidence presented, I am setting out my intention to begin a phased reduction of the commission rate over a period of time.


I also intend to take forward a range of proposals designed to support good management in the sector and to ensure that those buying and selling park homes have access to clear, consistent information to support their decision making.


I will make an oral statement in due course.


The summary of responses and financial review are available here: https://beta.gov.wales/park-homes-commission-rate


Friday 25th May 2018




GOVERNMENT PUBLISHES PART 2 OF THE CALL FOR EVIDENCE

ON THE LINK BELOW.




Tuesday 22nd May 2018
10% COMMISSION

GOVERNMENT PLEASE TAKE NOTE and LOOK AGAIN.

ECONOMICS OF THE INDUSTRY ARE NOT AFFECTED BY SALES COMMISSION IN THE USA

SO WHY IS IT DIFFERENT IN THE UK?












Supplied by Park Home Policy Forum
NO SALES COMMISSIONS 
For anyone who may be interested, the link at the end of this item will take you to a Youtube recording of a USA inter-state Meeting of APAC, the All Parks Alliance for Change. This is a grassroots organisation that serves as a vehicle for (mobile) home park residents to express their needs and concerns in their parks and in the larger community. The recording refers to bullying park owners and other issues that are common in the UK. Interestingly, some States now have clauses within the equivalent of our own Mobile Homes Act, that prohibits selling fees and reads as follows:
` The owner of a mobile home park or his agent shall not require payment of any type of selling fee or transfer fee by either a home owner in the park wishing to sell his mobile home to another party or by any party wishing to buy a mobile home from a home owner in the park as a condition of tenancy in a mobile home park for the prospective buyer. This section shall in no way prevent the owner of a mobile home park or his agent from applying the normal park standards to prospective buyers before granting or denying tenancy or from charging a reasonable selling fee or transfer fee for services actually performed and agreed to in writing by the home owner. Nothing in this section shall be construed to affect the rent charged.`
Also interesting, is that this does not appear to affect the economics of the industry, who in the UK argue that the viability of their park home businesses could not survive without the sales commission.

Wednesday 25th April 2018



NO CATCH. 

   FREE EXTERNAL WALL INSULATION FOR ONE LUCKY PARK HOME OWNER.

I have been approached by a reputable company who are looking for a park home owner to allow them to do a pilot job that will enable them to use their new product on park homes and obtain ECO funding to provide discounted works in the future to other park home owners.

Their letter to me is copied below.  If you would like to benefit from this, please email me and I will put you in touch with the Company.  You will then be able to ask as many questions as you like and satisfy yourself with regard to their offer - and one lucky person will have FREE wall insulation for their home.

If you are interested, please email Sonia at phojc1sm@gmail.com  by the end of April.

Best Wishes   Sonia



Dear Sonia

As stated, we are looking to find a park home in need of external wall insulation to complete as a pilot job as part of our partnership with the material manufacturer Weber. All of the work would be carried out free of charge with the only requirement for the resident to be available to have the work carried out during any of the dates listed below.

•         from 21st  to 25th  of May
•         28th  and 29th  of May
•         from 11th  to 15th of June
•         from 25th to 29th of June

This pilot job will enable a new product to be certified by the BBA (British Board of Agreement) and will allow it to be used for future works on park homes in conjunction with ECO funding which will provide discounted works in the future to other park home owners.

It would be favourable if the resident was able to provide comments or feature in a photograph however any further involvement with regards to reviews, social media or other forms of advertising will be entirely up to them if they wish to participate or not.


If possible we are looking mainly at a home located in Cambridgeshire, Essex or the midlands however can travel further afield if this is not possible.

Saturday 14th April 2018


"HOW THE MIGHTY CAN FALL"

LEASEHOLD-ADVISORY Service Chair resigns

No explanation for the resignation is given, but it follows calls from the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership that he resign, and questions in the Commons from MPs such as Justin Madders and LKP patron Sir Peter Bottomley.

Sir Peter said:
"A number of reasons have caused many in the leasehold sector to question how Roger Southam could be the appropriate person to chair the Leasehold Advisory Service.

"It may now be possible for LEASE to speak openly about the abuses suffered for too long by too many residential leaseholders." .............................
" In the meantime, the Board and staff will continue to drive the organisation forward in meeting the needs of leaseholders and park home owners."


SEE THE FULL STORY ON OUR  "Info from other sources" page



Monday 2nd April 2018


FOR INFORMATION


Review of Park Homes Legislation  
Call for evidence - Part 1  
Summary of responses
From Residents, Site Owners, LA's and others.

To view, please click on the link below




Sunday 1st April 2018

 PARK HOMES CAMPAIGNS


A little while ago in a pair of articles I wrote with Aimee Hutchinson of Blacks, Solicitors – A patchwork landscape: residential and holiday parks, leasehold lodges and mobile homes – Part I, L. & T. Review 2015, 19(1), 16-19, Part 2 L. & T. Review 2015, 19(2), 64-67 – we questioned the approach of the Consultation Paper by the Department of Communities and Local Government, A Better Deal for Mobile Home Owners (April 2012) and the  Communities and Local Government Committee Report,‘Park Homes’ (TSO, 2012), HC 177-I), which considered the distinction between mobile homes and “traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ housing” absolute and discounted the possibility of any overlap.
We also made the point that, while mobile homes and leasehold properties in or on parks, are very different in legal terms, they may be virtually indistinguishable on the ground; not only because both are often referred to as “lodges” or “chalets”, but also because agreements between occupiers and park owners were often informal and entered into without consideration of their true legal character.
In my submission to the Law Commission, I pointed out the disparity between freeholds and leaseholds on parks or estates and park homes, in relation to site rules which, unusually, park home owners have a statutory right to challenge and an entitlement to a written statement, while leaseholders and freeholders do not. Leaseholders and freeholders are left to such, primarily common law, remedies as may, in the particular circumstances of the case exist. That is one of the few aspects of the Patchwork Landscape of legislation in relation to which park home owners are not, by some considerable distance, second class citizens. When park homes on ostensibly well-appointed (but not necessarily well-managed) parks can have values in 6 figures, the injustice in the disparity of treatment is thrown into sharp relief.
A meeting I attended in Cornwall recently (the second of the two referred to below) brought home the extent to which even the new residential mobile homes legislation has failed to help park home owners.
With kind permission of Tony Turner, the chairman of the Park Homes Policy Forum, I reproduce his account of the meeting I attended and another the day before. I also reproduce, at his suggestion, the latest circular from The Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign.
The text of the two follows:
Published by the Park Homes Policy Forum: RECENT EVENTS IN CORNWALL:
LEASEHOLD ADVISORY SERVICE MEETINGS
MID AND EAST CORNWALL : 26TH/27TH MARCH 2018
To summarise, these two day events again revealed that the majority of issues raised were the same or similar to those that have been ongoing for very many years and that, other than in the Park Homes Owners JUSTICE Campaign which succeeded in persuading government to limit the opportunities for sales blocking, otherwise the introduction of the 2013 Act has had little positive effect.
On Monday and Tuesday, residents and their Association representatives travelled from parks across Cornwall and North Devon to hear Lease solicitor Ibraheem Dulmeer, eminent Barrister Rawdon Crozier, Stephen Hassall from IPHAS and the writer representing the Park Homes Policy Forum and responses to questions about the common problems of site maintenance’s, alleged overcharges for services, breaches of site licences and important terms that form the contract between park and home owners.
In 2013 home-owners were given hope that their lives would be restored to what they should always have been – but in again hearing the names of the same site owners, it remains clear that government pledges to rid the market of the rogue element have not only failed to materialise but that due to shortfalls in legislation and applied controls, conversely, their expansions have been encouraged.
So far and as in 2013, we cannot be confident that the current government review of park home legislation will go far enough and if not, we must be fully prepared to immediately respond. This is reason for the formation of the PHPF and all residents can today join the thousands who have already registered their interests through their FREE memberships.
Complacency or leaving it to others is not an option. Simply by registering, you will become part of the fight for vital and radical changes. Please use the contact form on our website: / or in similar confidence, email: ferrier57@btinternet.com

The Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign News Letter
From Sonia

Short News letter and a little more that we an do regarding the 10%
Dear All
I get a lot of emails asking what is happening and are there any updates on the 10% Commission Charge. As you are aware, since our success in 2013 and after five years of campaigning for a change from RPI to CPI on the annual pitch fee increase and an Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge – we now have to wait until the promised 2017 review of the Mobile Homes Act 2013 takes place; (sometime this year) when we will know if our pitch fees increase by RPI or CPI.
The Consultation papers are in. The petitions have been delivered and you have had the chance to have your say. However, with regard to the 10% Commission that is not included in the review, we must still keep the pressure up and to that end – although I know that many of you have sent a copy letter to the Consultation Review; may I respectfully ask you to please send a copy of the letter below to your constituency MP and the Housing Minister Dominic Raab at: House Of Commons, London SW1A 0AA
Date:
Your address:
Dear
I am a member of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign and I have been an integral part of that campaign which is calling for the annual increase to the pitch fee of all Park Home Residents to be changed from RPI to CPI and for Government to uphold the will of MPs in the previous coalition government at their debate on the 30th October 2014 for an Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge.
Call for a review of the 10% Commission Charge
At the Park Homes debate on 30th October 2014; MPs debating the need for an Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge unanimously voted as shown in the exert from HANSARD below:
Question put and agreed to.
Resolved,
That this House calls on the Government to set up a review of the current fee of up to 10 per cent of the sale price of a park home payable to the park home site owner.
At the APPG meeting on Wednesday 13th September 2017. It was quoted in the minutes that:
“The Chairman asked when the APPG would know whether the Minister would take on board a further review of commission. Mr Skeoch said that this was not in the scope of Part 2 of the review of the Mobile Homes Act 2013, but Ministers were aware that there was a call for a review of commission and that would be considered when reviewing the responses. If there was anything to be done on commission, there would be a separate consultation. “
As a Park Home Resident, and your constituent, I now make it known to you that I want Government to honour the will of MPs at the 30th October 2014 debate and to set up an Independent and transparent review (that includes sight of site owners accounting) of the current fee of up to 10 per cent of the sale price of a park home payable to the park home site owner. Mr. Skeoch has said this will be considered when reviewing the responses; I inform you as my constituency MP that I want you to make sure that the call for a review of the 10% commission is considered when reviewing the responses; this to be followed by a separate consultation leading to an Independent and transparent review of the 10% commission charge.
In addition, I make it known that I want the RPI increase to the annual pitch fee to be changed to CPI which is in line with pension increase and already enjoyed by park home residents in Wales.
Yours Sincerely
cc. Housing Minister Dominic Raab.
Park-HELP-Line 02038466601
Please don’t sit at home worrying. If you or any of your neighbours have a park home related problem and are unsure of where to turn for help. Please call this Free, Friendly Service on 02038466601 and speak in complete confidence to one of the Help Line Operators.
This service is sponsored by Paul Baker of PB Insurance who also gives a 15% discount to JUSTICE Campaign members who purchase insurance from them. You can get a quote at: 080 0038 5090

PUBLISHED BY RAWDON CROZIER

Rawdon Crozier is a barrister and mediator. He was educated at Bedford School and University College London and called to the Bar in 1984. His main field of practice is property litigation and his cases of note include the long-running Phillips v Francis service charge litigation, which has made new law on three occasions [2010] L. & T.R. 28; [2010] 2 E.G.L.R. 31 (which decided that holiday homes were dwellings for the purposes of the Landlord & Tenant Act 1985) and [2014] EWCA Civ 1395; [2015] 1 W.L.R. 741 (which concerned “qualifying works”) and [2017] UKUT 3 (LC); [2017] L. & T.R. 20 (which confirmed that contractual liability is the starting point for determining service charge liabilities and considered the interpretation of s.19(2) of the 1985 Act). The most recent substantive decision in the case (sub nom The Lessees v Francis FTT(PC), 09 March 2017) was the subject of an article ‘The million-dollar service charge reduction: The latest round of Phillips v Francis’ - https://www.lease-advice.org/article/million-dollar-service-charge-reduction-latest-round-phillips-v-francis/. Rawdon was also involved in part of the North East Property Buyers Litigation in the Court of Appeal in 2011 and was in the appellate stages of one of the leading cases on lease interpretation, Arnold v Britton [2015] UKSC 36; [2015] 2 W.L.R. 1593, in both the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. Rawdon was the keynote speaker at the Lease Conference in 2016 and is a regular contributor to Landlord & Tenant Review and writes for a number of other legal journals. He is on the Editorial Board of ‘Counsel’ magazine. Outside work Rawdon is a keen windsurfer and cyclist and was closely involved in the successful campaign in 2012 to reinstate windsurfing as an Olympic Sport. Views expressed in this blog are Rawdon's own. Every reasonable effort has been made to make the content of this blog as accurate and up to date as possible but no responsibility for its accuracy and correctness, nor for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed by Rawdon or KBG Chambers. The blog is not intended to be and should not be read as legal advice to any specific person or any specific matter.View all posts by Rawdon Crozier

Posted in Landlord & Tenant, law, Park Homes



Saturday 30th March  2018








Short News letter and a little more that we an do regarding the 10%



Dear All

I get a lot of emails asking what is happening and are there any updates on the 10% Commission Charge. As you are aware, since our success in 2013 and after five years of campaigning for a change from RPI to CPI on the annual pitch fee increase and an Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge – we now have to wait until the promised 2017 review of the Mobile Homes Act 2013 takes place; (sometime this year) when we will know if our pitch fees increase by RPI or CPI.

The Consultation papers are in.  The petitions have been delivered and you have had the chance to have your say.   However, with regard to the 10% Commission that is not included in the review, we must still keep the pressure up and to that end – although I know that many of you have sent a copy letter to the Consultation Review; may I respectfully ask you to please send a copy of the letter below to your constituency MP and the Housing Minister Dominic Raab at: House Of Commons, London SW1A 0AA

Date:

Your address:



Dear

I am a member of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign and I have been an integral part of that campaign which is calling for the annual increase to the pitch fee of all Park Home Residents to be changed from RPI to CPI and for Government to uphold the will of MPs in the previous coalition government at their debate on the 30th October 2014 for an Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge. 

Call for a review of the 10% Commission Charge

At the Park Homes debate on 30th October 2014; MPs debating the need for an Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge unanimously voted as shown in the exert from HANSARD below:

Question put and agreed to.

Resolved,

That this House calls on the Government to set up a review of the current fee of up to 10 per cent of the sale price of a park home payable to the park home site owner.

At the APPG meeting on Wednesday 13th September 2017.  It was quoted in the minutes that:

“The Chairman asked when the APPG would know whether the Minister would take on board a further review of commission. Mr Skeoch said that this was not in the scope of Part 2 of the review of the Mobile Homes Act 2013, but Ministers were aware that there was a call for a review of commission and that would be considered when reviewing the responses. If there was anything to be done on commission, there would be a separate consultation. “

As a Park Home Resident, and your constituent,  I now make it known to you that I want Government to honour the will of MPs at the 30th October 2014 debate and to set up an Independent and transparent review (that includes sight of site owners accounting) of the current fee of up to 10 per cent of the sale price of a park home payable to the park home site owner.   Mr. Skeoch has said this will be considered when reviewing the responses; I inform you as my constituency MP that I want you to make sure that the call for a review of the 10% commission is considered when reviewing the responses; this to be followed by a separate consultation leading to an Independent and transparent review of the 10% commission charge.

In addition, I make it known that I want the RPI increase to the annual pitch fee to be changed to CPI which is in line with pension increase and already enjoyed by park home residents in Wales.



Yours Sincerely



cc.  Housing Minister Dominic Raab.



Park-HELP-Line   02038466601

Please don’t sit at home worrying.  If you or any of your neighbours have a park home related problem and are unsure of where to turn for help.  Please call this Free, Friendly Service on  02038466601 and speak in complete confidence to one of the Help Line Operators. 

This service is sponsored by Paul Baker of PB Insurance who also gives a 15% discount to JUSTICE Campaign members who purchase insurance from them.  You can get a quote at:  080 0038 5090



MAY I AGAIN ASK FOR YOUR HELP.





It is now five months since my park home (pictured above) was stolen from the haulage yard in Devon where it was waiting to be delivered.  Paul Baker of PB Insurance (who I thank most sincerely) has put up a £1000 reward for information leading to its recovery.  If you should happen to see it hidden in a field or maybe it has arrived on your site, would you please either contact me at  phojc1sm@gmail.com or call Crime Stoppers.

I have been told my home was stolen in retribution for my work with the JUSTICE Campaign.  The Police are aware of this and as far as I am aware have still not finished looking at cctv!!!  I do not expect to have my home returned to me – but if still in this country it is lying somewhere and someone, somewhere knows about it. 

It has probably not been moved too far as it has been a bit too hot to handle especially with the wonderful media attention from the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership (especially Sir Peter Bottomley, Sebastian O’Kelly and Martin Boyd) who almost immediately stood up and supported me when I was at my lowest and  were not afraid to put their heads above the parapet. 

Equally, Paul Baker has written extensively in his Park Home News, Tony Turner has been a staunch friend, phoned me every day and has done his utmost to help me.  Without their help and the kindness of so many Park Home Residents life would have been an awful lot bleaker – and I thank all those residents (of which there were many) who wrote to their own MP demanding action regarding the theft of my home.  (Let's hope that they take heed and stop this happening to any other residents who upsets certain site owners.)

Since the theft of my home, I have taken real notice of the homeless on the streets.  I have to say that my heart goes out to them because if it were not for the kindness of friends who have put me up - that would be me.  You cannot imagine how much it means to have your own home to retreat too, until it is no longer there.  That is why I am writing this because we must not let this happen to any other park home resident - but we must be allowed the freedom to stand our corner without reprisals.







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