Dear Mr John Thompson & Mrs Chris Thompson,
We are writing to update you regarding our position around COVID-19, this letter addresses many of the questions you have raised over the last few weeks. Following the recent Government update, we have extended the closure of our holiday parks up to and including Sunday 5th July 2020.
This means we will re-start our season on Monday 6th July 2020, but as you will appreciate this is based on current Government restrictions.
We would like to assure you that we are working hard with the Government and fellow industry leaders to lobby for support to get our owners back to park sooner. We will update you as soon as we are able should the current closure dates change.
In the meantime, we must stress that it is important you continue to follow Government regulations and do not attempt to return to your holiday home until our parks re-open.
You are no doubt aware, your pitch licence agreement enables you to place your holiday home on the pitch and covers the maintenance and security of the park. Your pitch is still being provided and maintained during the lockdown and we are under no obligation to refund your pitch fee or pay you any compensation for the lockdown period. Therefore, given the current situation of uncertainty that we are all faced with, we are not in position to offer a refund or partial credit of any of your pitch fee.
We realise that this may not be the outcome you had been hoping for, but we wanted to be as transparent as possible with you at this time, and we appreciate your patience. Be assured, we have continued to invest in our parks (which included spending £60 million over the winter and early spring), continued to maintain and enhance the environment and facilities and we have, of course, increased security to keep your holiday home and possessions as safe as possible in these uncertain times.
We are still working closely with our insurance providers and discussions are complex and may continue for some time, this is a difficult and uncertain period for all. We will update you as soon as we are able to, please understand this could be towards the end of the season.
We are continuing to work on ways in which we can support your holiday home experience when you are able to return to park, and we have outlined some of the initiatives that we have been able to introduce below.
Initiative 1 – Direct Debit Payment Support.
We have already offered support to those that pay their pitch fee using the direct debit scheme, which gives a little respite over the next few months and we’re pleased to see that many of our owners have taken this up. If you have not already done this and want to have a confidential chat, please call 0344 335 3523 and our friendly team will talk you through the options available to you.
Initiative 2 - Owner Benefit – food, drink and payable activities.
As you can’t currently enjoy the benefit of your 20% food and drink discount card we are enhancing this benefit in two ways; the discount will be increased to 30% and it will be extended to cover the full 2021 season.
This will mean a 30% discount will be available for you right up to the end of the 2021 season. The usual terms and conditions around using your discount will continue to apply which may change from time to time.
Guaranteed Income/Income Promise Schemes.
We are pleased to say that even though we are not able to hire out your holiday home when the park is closed we will continue to honour our agreement with you and you will receive the benefits of these schemes.
As there can’t be any bookings while the park is closed you won’t receive any letting income or credit from us. Unfortunately, we are unable to guarantee any bookings, however, we are working hard to ensure our park is ready for when we are able to open the parks to holidaymakers.
As we’ve said, while the parks are closed you can’t sublet your holiday home so if you sublet privately you’ll need to make your own arrangements to cancel bookings. We’ll let you know as soon as the parks are open to holidaymakers and you can take bookings.
You’ll probably know about the business rates holiday offered to most businesses. We will of course not charge you for rates where we have benefitted from this.
About your Holiday Home Ownership
We’ll continue to keep you up to date with what we are doing. As we gear up to re-open, you’ll start receiving your usual letters and notifications, which we have paused over the last few weeks. This means that over the coming weeks we will be sending utility bill notifications and routine service letters.
Our parks continue to operate with General Managers, grounds and security teams working 24 hours. We have increased our maintenance and security during the closed period to ensure essential services and security are maintained. In addition, we have continued our investment programmes across the parks.
We have started work on our re-opening plan and we will be updating you on what this will mean in due course, this will include operating standards and additional regimes to ensure that when we are able to open, our people, owners and holidaymakers are well looked after and we are adopting all Government guidelines to operate safely.
The safety and wellbeing of our teams, owners, holidaymakers and local communities remain our absolute priority and we will continue to follow Government advice.
Our dedicated central support team is in full operation working from home to provide support for you. Should you wish to contact us regarding anything relating to your holiday home ownership we are working as usual 7 days a week to answer any queries.
Rest assured the teams on park continue to work on making sure everything is ready for your return and we can’t wait to see you all again when we are able to open our doors again.
Stay safe and healthy, and all the very best,
Chloe and the Parkdean Resorts Team