Wednesday, 6 April 2011

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12th August 2017

                                  PLEASE NOTE
  I am sorry for any inconvenience


                        BUT FROM THE 11th AUGUST 2017
                        THE TELEPHONE NUMBER FOR THE
                      Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign
                                           HAS CHANGED TO
                                     07903024612
                                                      AND  
                        THE SILENT WOMAN ADDRESS
           IS NO LONGER THE HEADQUARTERS ADDRESS FOR THE
                          Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign.

                                      UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
                             IF YOU WISH TO CONTACT THE
                       Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign
                                        PLEASE TELEPHONE
                                     07903024612 
                          or email
              phojc1sm@gmail.com 




1st August  2017




TO ALL PARK HOME OWNERS

IMPORTANT INFORMATION BELOW REGARDING THE APPG FOR PARK HOMES


PLEASE NOTE.

I have received correspondence from the BH & HPA secretariat regarding my posting below and the
Meeting of the APPG for park homes.

Whilst I cannot publish their letter
THEY DO SPECIFICALLY ASK  THAT AS I HAVE MADE YOU AWARE OF THE NEXT MEETING IN THE POSTING BELOW.  THAT I  ALSO MAKE YOU ALL AWARE THAT

THE APPG FOR PARK HOMES MEETING IN SEPTEMBER
IS NOT PUBLIC EVENT.

However, as suggested to you in the posting below
you can be represented on Park Home Matters  by your Constituency MP




24th July 2017




Dear Justice Campaign Member

With regard to the recent Briefings that I sent to you.

As members, I believe that you have a right to know all that is going on in matters that can have an affect on you and your lifestyle.  In the recent Briefings that I sent, you will no doubt have noticed that almost all of the information regarding our JUSTICE Campaign is totally out of date and the important factors, ie our request for an Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge that includes sight of the site owners certified audited accounts has been completely left out. 

So too have the reasons that we want changes to the 10%, ie, that you are trapped in your homes because you can only purchase something inferior to what you already have after parting with 10% of your equity - along with the seriously curtailed lack and quality of care that can be afforded if you need to go into a nursing home.

I find it incredible that although the author of the Briefings is aware of our Three Nations Rally, she has chosen to ignore all that it stood for and all that you worked for.  Therefore, I have written to the author of the Briefings regarding these points and have copied the letter to the DCLG.  I will be writing to all MPs during the summer recess with the anecdotal statistics on the revenue streams of site owners and the relevant points on the Briefings and the APPG (as listed below) will also be enclosed.


APPG (all party parliamentary group) on Park Homes.

Many residents are aware that the Industries Trade Body the BH@HPA (British Holiday and Home Park Association) were the secretariat of the  APPG on Park Homes and have voiced their utter dismay that the Industries Trade Body had been appointed as secretariat and host a website for the APPG at their offices.   Residents have reported their feelings that the Industry (who like the JUSTICE Campaign, IPHAS and NAPHR are guest organisations at the APPG) should not be considered for this position. 

Of course it is vitally important to have an APPG  for park homes, however,  the Industry representatives, like the representatives of park home residents should only be there to put their views to the parliamentarians and bring awareness of the problems that are occurring.  Many of you have voiced your feelings and I certainly agree that any working role should be done by an independent and transparent source, therefore avoiding the possibility of any benefits for their own organisation.  In fact, I have had to disagree the last minutes of the APPG meeting because they  failed to include important issues that were spoken of at the APPG meeting by the JUSTICE Campaign and the Minister on the subject of the 10%.

I have spoken to several MPs about your worries and have been told that it is only parliamentarians who can vote for such roles to be filled.  Guest organisations like the BH@HPA, NCC, JUSTICE Campaign, IPHAS and NAPHR are unable to vote.  Therefore, the JUSTICE Campaign can do little to appose the BH@HPA again becoming the secretariat of the APPG.  However, I am reliably informed that if they are again voted as the secretariat following the recent general election, this must be declared; for their Director General is  a paid employee of the BH@HPA when presumably undertaking work for the APPG for park homes.

I have also been reliably informed that it is of great importance that we get as many MPs who are sympathetic to the cause of park home residents to become members of the APPG for park homes.  There is no doubt that the BH@HPA will continue to try to push the 10% commission charge and RPI to CPI under the carpet - because that is what the industry wants.  However, all those who attended our London meeting will be aware of the many MPs who are in support of an Independent and transparent review of the 10%.  WE NEED THESE MPs TO JOIN  AND SPEAK FOR US AT THE APPG FOR PARK HOMES for it is only those parliamentarians who could (if they so wished) ask for an independent secretariat.

I have already contacted several MPs requesting their agreement to join the APPG and attend  the crucial meeting of the APPG on Park Homes that will take place from 9.30am on Wednesday 13th September in Room U at Portcullis House.

This is a very important meeting.  It will be the AGM to elect officers and re-register the group in the new Parliament and we need as many supportive MPs of the changes we want for park home residents to attend as it is their vote that will decide the officers and secretariat.

This is where (if you agree) that your help is urgently needed.  If you would like more MPs to work for you with regard to the 10% and other issues and you would like to see an even playing field;  please write or email your MP as soon as possible.  This can be done individually or by sending one letter to your MP that has been signed by all residents on your park.   If you do not agree that the Industries Trade Body the BH@HPA should be the secretariat and you want an even playing field, please explain this to your MP as they are the only people who can vote and discuss this matter.


SAMPLE LETTER OF WHAT YOU MAY LIKE TO WRITE TO YOUR CONSTITUENCY MP.  As the summer recess is almost upon us, it would be best to address the letter to your MPs constituency office - and may I suggest that you ask for an acknowledgement of your letter.

Dear

As my/our constituency MP may I/we request that you support us (as park home residents) by joining the APPG for Park Homes.

The AGM to elect officers and re-register the group in the new Parliament will take place from 9.30am on Wednesday 13th September in Room U at Portcullis House.

As parliamentarians you have the right to vote for the Officers and Secretariat of the APPG for Park Homes.  As Park Home Residents we consider that using the Industries trade body - the BH & HPA as the secretariat of the APPG and allowing the APPG web site to be housed at the BH & HPA offices is totally wrong.  The BH & HPA are a guest organisation like our JUSTICE Campaign.  We believe that in the interests of fairness and transparency the secretariat should be totally independent from the guest groups (of apposing sides) and I/we would respectfully ask you to consider this.

Yours Sincerely

Many thanks in anticipation of your help and if you should have a problem or wish to speak confidentially to a friendly operator,  WHY NOT CALL THE PARK-HELP-LINE  ON  02038466601



Sonia.




For many Months, our JUSTICE Campaign has been part of a Park Homes Working Group.  Although I will be writing to all members in due course regarding the ongoing 10% Commission Charge,  RPI to CPI and the APPG for Park Homes;  please see below for your information the latest briefing from the House of Commons Library on  Mobile (park) homes.

House of Commons Library

Mobile (park) homes

Published Friday, June 9, 2017
This Commons Library Briefing Paper provides an overview of the the rights of residents who live year-round on mobile home parks. The main focus of the paper is on mobile home owners in England but sections on Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland are included.
Jump to full report >>
People living year-round in mobile (park) homes normally own their home and rent the land on which it is stationed from the site owner (paying a pitch fee).  The Government estimates that around 85,000 households live in mobile homes on 2000 sites in England. The majority of mobile home sites are privately owned with a small number owned by local authorities. Mobile homes can offer an attractive housing option for retired people, consequently residents tend to be older. In 2002 68% of mobile home occupants were aged 60 or over. The age profile of mobile home owners can make it challenging for them to assert their rights when dealing with unscrupulous site operators.

The legal framework: issues and shortcomings

The legal framework within which site and mobile home owners operate has developed in a piecemeal fashion. The Mobile Homes Act 1983 extended the rights of mobile home residents, particularly in respect of security of tenure, but various short-comings in its provisions were identified, leading to calls for its review and amendment.  In 1988 Shelter's now disbanded Mobile Homes Unit produced a report on the operation of the 1983 Act which called for changes to be made, including having pitch fee levels fixed by rent officers; the development of an effective system of arbitration; and stronger duties on local authorities to inspect unfit housing on mobile homes sites.
Following a review carried out by a Park Homes Working Group in 1998, some of the short-comings identified were addressed by the Housing Act 2004.  Concerns around malpractice in the park homes sector persisted. These focused on complaints about unfair fees and charges; poor standards of maintenance; and site owners obstructing the ability of home owners to sell. The Labour Government conducted a further consultation exercise in 2009, following which detailed proposals to strengthen the site licensing system were set out in Park homes site licensing reform: The way forward and next steps. These measures were not implemented prior to the 2010 General Election.
The Coalition Government published A better deal for mobile home owners on 16 April 2012. The Communities and Local Government Select Committee conducted an inquiry into the park homes industry and published its report, Park Homes, in June 2012. The Committee found “widespread malpractice” in the sector and concluded that the existing legislative framework was “inadequate.”

The Mobile Homes Act 2013

After drawing fifth place in the 2012 Private Members’ Bill ballot, Peter Aldous used this opportunity to introduce the Mobile Homes Bill 2012-13.  The Bill secured Government support and amended the existing legislation to strengthen the protection offered to mobile home owners. The Mobile Homes Act received Royal Assent on 26 March 2013. The 2013 Act implemented many of the proposals contained in A better deal for mobile home owners and recommendations made by the Communities and Local Government Select Committee in Park Homes.  The Coalition Government issued detailed guidance on the rights and obligations of site and mobile home owners. In addition, the remit of the Leasehold Advisory Service was extended to provide free information and advice to “owners of mobile homes, site owners, local authority officers or anyone else with a question about the law on park homes.”

Continuing concerns

Despite legislative activity in this area, mobile home owners are not content that all of their issues have been resolved. For example, there is particular dissatisfaction about the continuation of the requirement to pay a commission fee of 10% on the sale price of a mobile home to the site owner.  A separate Library Briefing Paper, 7003, Mobile (park homes): 10% commission on sales provides detailed information on this charge.

Mobile homes Policy Review 2017

As noted above, mobile home owners are not content that all of their issues have been resolved.
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 Group, which included national resident groups and industry trade bodies, concluded its work and put forward its recommendations to Government.
The 2015 Conservative Government launched a two-part review of park homes legislation in April 2017. Part 1 of the review concerned wider practices in the park home sector and called for evidence on: the fairness of charges; the transparency of site ownership; and experience of harassment. The call for evidence closed on 27 May 2017. Part 2 of the review, which was to be published at a later date, was aimed at gathering evidence around the effectiveness of the Mobile Homes Act 2013.

Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland

Housing policy is a devolved matter in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.  Each of the devolved Nations has introduced specific legislation to regulate activities on residential mobile home sites. The Welsh Government has said it intends to act on recommendations contained in research into the economics of the park home industry. Consultation on commission fees on the sale of park homes in Wales in underway (closing on 17 August 2017).

Commons Briefing papers SN01080
Authors: Wendy Wilson; Hannah Cromarty
Topics: HousingOwner occupation

Download the full report

Supporting documents

The Mobile Homes Act 2013  PDF, 176.44 KB)

 

CONTINUING TO PUSH THE 10% FORWARD


A meeting of the Working Group is to be held soon to discuss the scope of the 2017 review.  As I will have just undergone an operation I will be physically unable to attend; however, the DCLG have very kindly organised teleconferencing so that I can take part in the meeting.  I am very thankful to them for this as it will ensure that I can voice what I know Justice Campaign members think about the points on the table and I will do my best to make sure that your voice is heard.  Therefore, I have now sent the following letter to the Housing Minister.  Thank you to all who helped me to put together the revenue/income statistics of site owners.  These have now been done and whilst anecdotal, do show the vast levels of income they enjoy.  A copy has gone to the Housing Minister and all sitting MPs will receive copies.  I am not allowed to make them public as I have named names and parks - but the people that need to know and can help us, are getting copies.

Thanks go to Paul Baker of PB insurance for his financial support of these statistics.


LETTER JUST SENT TO THE HOUSING MINISTER RE: 10%





The Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign
President:  Lord Graham of Edmonton
Founder: Sonia McColl OBE



Dear Minister

Firstly, may I convey my warm congratulations on your appointment as Housing Minister and the hope that  in the scope of the impending 2017 review you will agree to progress the need for an Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge.  This charge is currently paid to the Site Owner when a resident's property is sold. In addition a change from RPI to CPI on the pitch fee increase that park home residents pay on a monthly basis is also required. This is already in operation in Wales and as fairness to all is a pledge of this government, we ask that CPI (which is the increase by which the residents pensions increase) is adopted in England.

Whilst I believe the scope of the 2017 review is to look at the effectiveness of the Mobile Homes Act 2013, may I respectfully bring to your attention the park homes debate in the House of Commons on 30th October 2014 when all MPs unanimously voted for an Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% commission charge.

HANSARD. " 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% of the sale price of a park home."

The Minister, Brandon Lewis MP said:    : "He would be very happy for the working group, under its own auspices to consider a wider review of the issues that were raised today" when putting forward recommendations for the 2017 review of the new legislation.  (THE ISSUES RAISED WERE THE 10% COMMISSION CHARGE.)

At the invitation of the Minister, I, Sonia McColl, founder of the JUSTICE Campaign was  invited to be a member of that Working Group and although I tabled the 10% issue at the working group, it was largely ignored.  Why? because the Industries trade bodies, who were also members of that group were never going to recommend the Independent Transparent Review that all the debating MP's had requested.  THEREFORE, NO AGREEMENT OF RECOMMENDATION WAS EVER - OR - COULD HAVE EVER BEEN REACHED. The subject was effectively side stepped by the Minister and disposed of an awkward problem - which was not the will of the voting Parliamentarians.

At the last All Party Parliamentary Group Meeting for Park Homes; the Minister Gavin Barlow said that the 10% commission would not be part of the 2017 review.  I was able to direct the Minister to  HANSARD (as quoted above) and the unanimous vote of the Parliamentarians. 

THE MINISTER THEN AGREED TO RECONSIDER.

Following the last election, Mr. Barwell was not re-elected, however, after making some progress with your predecessors I now hope to continue that progress with your good self and look to you to make sure that the 10% Commission Charge (as voted for by Parliamentarians) is set out in the scope of the 2017 Review along with the change from RPI to CPI on the pitch fee.


A little Background Information to keep you fully informed.

Following the initial rally/presentation to Downing Street of in excess of 30,000 signed petitions from park home residents throughout the length and breadth of our country and a meeting in the Palace of Westminster with MPs and Peers; a debate was held in the House of Commons on the 30th October 2014.  That debate was led by the then MP  Dame Annette Brooke OBE with many MPs and the Housing Minister Brandon Lewis MP present.  It was unanimously agreed by all MPs that an Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge should take place and was quoted as such in Hansard.

A Further Three Nations Rally organised by the Justice Campaign took place in March 2017.  Following that rally and further presentation of signed petitions to Downing Street a meeting took place in Portcullis House.  Many MP's and Peers attended and much support was given verbally and in writing for the Independent and Transparent Review that we are requesting. 

A further change of Government has ensued and the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign and its Park-help-Line continues to receive distressing calls from Residents who feel TRAPPED in their homes because after giving 10% of their equity from the sale of their homes; they can only afford to move into a cheaper home of inferior quality.   Park home ownership is generally  for the retired person; those who need to sell their home to move into care are also seriously limited to the amount and quality of care they can afford.  The Justice Campaign is constantly urged by park home residents to continue the 10% fight against this outdated and inequitable charge.

Many Site Owners  live in mansions, drive luxury cars, fly helicopters and are prominent in the "Rich List."  Cash strapped residents watch on TV as a certain site owner who owns in excess of 40 parks flaunts his luxury mansion,  expensive cars and purports to have a 250 million pound fortune while still requiring 10% of home owners equity when they sell their homes - and he is not alone.  There are many just like him and even the smallest site owner is a millionaire in land value. 

I have attached an anecdotal statistics of the income and revenue of the site owners that has been produced from a questionnaire provided to park home residents.  It names the Parks, Park Owners (some of whom are on the rich list) and gives a good indication of the revenue in question.  Whilst these anecdotal statistics cannot be published in the public domain, the income and revenue statistics will be provided to every sitting MP as we seek to bring fairness to the 10% Commission Charge.

The Industry states the 10% Commission Fee is a necessary income strand for the site owners business, without which businesses would flounder.  Residents challenge this statement and demand proof of the likely business failure.

Site owners do absolutely nothing for the 10% that home owners are forced to pay them when they sell their home.  The average Park Home will sell for two hundred thousand pounds - that  produces  a gift to the park owner of twenty thousand pounds.  On the initial sale of the average home, site owners will make at least 60.000 pounds profit.  When the home is sold they receive 10% of their own profit.  (WHERE IS THE FAIRNESS IN THAT?)

The Prime Minister regularly informs us of her Governments pledge of fairness to all.  PENSIONER Park Home Owners  demand PROOF THAT  MILLIONAIRS NEED their equity to prevent their businesses from failing.  They want the Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% charge that MPs called for in the 2014 debate and it needs to include sight of the site owners certified audited accounts.   I feel sure that you will agree that only  a thorough investigation by Government will provide proof that  site owners such as the millionaire with a two hundred and fifty million pound fortune will suffer without 10% of the pensioners equity.  It should also be know that certain supposed cash strapped Site owners are now sponsoring TV programmes.  I am told that "Posh Pawn" is one of them.

No previous review has ever done a thorough independent inspection that looked at certified proof of accounting.  At a recent PACEC review in Wales, site owners were provided with a form and asked to fill it in.  Therefore, that report was part based on the site owners honesty!!! as they could write exactly what they liked with no given proof.  A fact referred to by researchers of that report.  

Our petition signed by park home owners from over 1000 parks demands  an Independent, Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge  with sight of the site owners certified accounting - along with a change from RPI to CPI on the annual increase to the pitch fee.

The Welsh Government are already leading the way and have already accepted the change from RPI to CPI on the pitch fee increase that is inline with the CPI increase to residents pensions. They are also consulting on the 10% commission charge.  

Therefore, as the new Housing Minister, I would respectfully ask you to honour the will  of the MPs who voted for an Independent and transparent review of the 10% commission charge on the 30th October 2014 and in addition the many MPs who, since the last Three Nations Rally organised by the Justice Campaign in March 2017 have added their names to those MPs already calling for this review.

May I ask that you please reconsider the Hansard Vote and the will of Parliamentarians at the October 2014 park homes debate and allow the 10% commission charge to be included in the scope of the 2017 review of the park home industry.

Thank you for reading this email.  I look forward to hearing from you in due course and  will be happy to provide any further information that you may need.   The attached Income/Revenue Stats at the bottom of this email are sent to you in confidence and will be sent to every sitting MP.

Yours Sincerely
Sonia McColl


Sonia McColl OBE  Founder of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign

Tel:  01929 553110.   email:  sonia.mccoll.phojc@gmail.com  Web Site:  www.parkhomeownersjusticecampaign.co.uk


THREE NATIONS PROTEST RALLY



The Park Home Owners JUSTICE
Campaign

President:  Lord Graham of Edmonton.
Founder:  Sonia McColl OBE

Sadly, following the election results it is with much regret that our
Vice President Natascha Engel
has lost her seat.
On behalf of our JUSTICE Campaign
sincere thanks are sent in recognition of Natascha's 
 unstinting help to Park Home Residents
and we wish her well for the future.

Our Campaign to change the 10% Commission Charge continues
and when the new Government is firmly in place, we will continue to push forward
and every MP will be provided with NEW information that has been prepared
by your JUSTICE Campaign.











This photo of Lord  Graham (fondly known as Lord Ted) was taken today 8th June 2017 exclusively  for the JUSTICE Campaign by Susan Mintram-Mason

Sue, a stalwart member of our JUSTICE Campaign visited Lord Ted today and I am told they had a lovely chat.  Lord Ted told Sue that he will always do all that he can to help our campaign and certainly answered the questions that I had passed to Sue for Lord Ted's advice.

Sue lives in close proximity to Lord Ted and I am told she will be visiting again and taking her beautiful Labrador as those dogs are a firm favourite of Lord Ted.

Looking extremely well, Lord Ted continues to want to know everything that our JUSTICE Campaign is doing and we are so lucky to receive his valuable help and advice; we will of course keep him fully informed of all JUSTICE Campaign business

Lord Ted expressed his thanks for the many get well messages that he has received and has said that in due course he will answer them all.




GOVERNMENT CALL FOR EVIDENCE

You have until the 27th May to take part in this consultation and a copy of the Consultation Document is available at:

Many of you have contacted me because you were understandably concerned at providing your name to the evidence you may give in the consultation.  I have emailed the DCLG with regard to this.  The DCLG have stated that you should have no fears in providing your name to any evidence you may give.  Your submission will only be seen by DCLG and NO members of the Working Group, APPG or the Industry will have sight of your submission.  If any of your evidence is used, all personal names will be redacted.

You have also asked what the section  in the consultation paper regarding FAIRNESS OF CHARGES means - and if it includes the 10% commission charge.

Although that section does not specifically mention the 10% commission charge, I strongly recommend that you add your feelings on the 10% charge to anything that you might write in your submission regarding FAIRNESS OF CHARGES.  I say this because in answer to my letter to the Minister following our rally in London, which asked the Minister for an Independent and Transparent Review of the Commission Charge with sight of the site owners certified accounting - and following my comments to the Minister at the APPG which reminded him of the 30th October debate in 2014 when MPs unanimously voted (without division) for an Independent and Transparent review of the commission charge,  as reported in HANSARD - I received on 26th April the following letter from the Minister's office.

Dear Ms McColl

Thank you for your email of 22nd March to Gavin Barwell MP about the commission paid to a park home site owner on the sale of a mobile home.  I have been asked to reply.

The Minister has noted your concerns in addition to your comments raised at the recent APPG meeting.  As you are aware, as part of the review of the Mobile Homes Act 2013 the Government has published a call for evidence on fairness of charges, the transparency of site ownership and on  experience of harassment.

From the Minister's above reply; although the consultation document does not specifically mention the  10% Commission Charge.  I strongly recommend that you include reference of your views on the 10% Commission in the section that deals with FAIRNESS OF CHARGES and the need to change the  RPI pitch fee increase to CPI (which is inline with your pension increase.)

Many of you have contacted me to say that the wording of the consultation document is not very easy to understand.  Certainly if you are members of IPHAS or NAPHR and feeling a little unsure of the wording of the consultation document, may I suggest that you ask for their help if there are areas that you are not entirely sure about.

Due to the effort that all Justice Campaign Members have made, our 10% Rally and call for the change from RPI to CPI on the Pitch Fee Review went very well and many MPs supported us.  Now, until the general election is over, we can only wait to see which MPs will be re-instated and then target them again. 

However, before our Rally; RPI to CPI was definitely not on the table and the 10% Commission Charge had been effectively buried.  Together, we have turned that around and I hope you will agree that it is now very important that we all put our views forward to the requested questions in Part 1 of the consultation as this will no doubt be our last chance to do so. (Don't worry if you can not answer all the questions - but please do put forward the 10% and RPI to CPI as we must not give them any opportunity to say that you did not respond regarding those topics.

Apart from trying to convince the MP candidates  - who will be calling on you - about our need for their support (if elected) of the 10% and RPI to CPI issues, there is little that we can do until after the general election - and I will write to you with a full update of the information that your JUSTICE Campaign will be sending to all the elected MPs.

If you do have a problem or want to talk to someone in confidence, please call our
Park-help-Line  on 02038466601. 
Our Free, Friendly and confidential service is open from 10am to 5pm Monday to Friday.

Park-help-Line is sponsored by Paul Baker of PB Insurance Services.  You can call for a free insurance quote on 0800 0385033 and if you mention that you are a member of the Justice Campaign you will get a 15% discount.

Although our JUSTICE Campaign is not political, may I take this opportunity to thank our Vice President Natascha Engel for her valued assistance to our JUSTICE Campaign.  Natascha was the MP for N.E. Derbyshire and I am sure that  as our Vice President, we all hope that she will retain her seat in the coming election.


Sonia






PLEASE NOTE
As from 2nd May 2017
The New Email Address
for the JUSTICE Campaign will be:








MP's attending  the contentious 10% Commission Charge Meeting
in Portcullis House on 21st March 2017
gave important advice to
PARK HOME RESIDENTS
who voiced concerns that their MP's and Local Authorities
did nothing to help them with their
problems arising from Site Owners not fulfilling their obligations
 regarding Park Home Living.

Many JUSTICE Campaign MEMBERS said they were fed up with being fobbed off by MP's and Local Authorities.

They were told by attending MP's
that they were NOW a very strong lobbying group and to

NAME AND SHAME THEM.

Our Park Home Owners JUSTICE  Campaign applauds those MP's
and
whilst it will be vitally important for  residents to show evidence of this lack of support by MP's and Local Authorities

 IT IS TIME FOR YOU ALL TO CONTACT YOUR LOCAL MEDIA IF THIS IS HAPPENING TO YOU

AND DO AS THE MP's SAY.

NAME AND SHAME THEM.








THE COMMITTEE MEETING IN THE PALACE OF WESTMINSTER IS NOW FULLY SUBSCRIBED AND  ADMITTANCE WILL BE RESTRICTED
TO THOSE WHO HAVE ALREADY BEEN PROVIDED WITH THE NECESSARY IDENTIFICATION

Any Park Home Residents who still wish to come to London are very welcome to support us at the Rally.

If you should wish to attend the Rally's in Cardiff or Scotland - Please contact Sonia McColl who will put you in touch with
the Welsh and Scottish Co-ordinators.

Press Release.


The    THREE NATIONS PROTEST RALLY   (EnglandScotland and Wales)

Organised by Sonia McColl OBE, founder of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign

At 11.30am on the 21st March 2017, hundreds of retired park home owners will PROTEST outside of Downing Street when their petition to challenge the 10% commission charge paid to site owners on the sale of a park home is delivered to number 10 at 12 noon.  Conservative MP for Christchurch, Christopher Chope OBE who is also the Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Park Homes will accompany Sonia McColl and Park Home Owners for the presentation. 

At 12.15, protesting banner waving retired park home owners from every part of our country will march (some in wheelchairs) to the Palace of Westminster to attend a meeting in Committee Room 10 from 2pm to 4pm.  Every MP with park homes in their constituency has today been invited to this meeting by Christopher Chope MP who is chairing the meeting supported by Sonia McColl and Vice President of the JUSTICE Campaign  Natascha Engel who is the MP for North East Derbyshire and Deputy Speaker.

Pensioner park home owners on static incomes that increase by CPI will attend this meeting and voice their views to MP's on the 10% Commission Charge (that TRAPS them in their homes) and call for their ground rent increase to change from RPI to CPI.  A CPI increase is already enjoyed by(Park home owners in Wales.

Simultaneously to the London Protest; under the banner of the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign,  park home owners in Wales and Scotland will  protest and  attend Committee Room meetings in Cardiff and The Scottish Parliament.

Background

In 2014 the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign - who initiated the need to stop "Sale Blocking" by site owners which ultimately brought about the New Mobile Homes Act 2013 (as amended) -  delivered  its first petition for an Independent Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge to Downing Street.  A Commons debate led by Dame Annette Brooke OBE took place on 30th October 2014.  MP's voted unanimously for an Independent and Transparent Review of the Charge. 

HANSARD QUOTED. " 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% of the sale price of a park home."

The Minister side stepped the issue saying: "He would be very happy for the working group, under its own auspices to consider a wider review of the issues that were raised today" when putting forward recommendations for the 2017 review of the new legislation.

This was not what MP's had unanimously requested.  Sonia McColl. founder of the JUSTICE Campaign was  invited to be a member of that Working Group.  Although she tabled the 10% issue, it was largely ignored.  Why? because the Industries trade bodies, as members of that group were never going to recommend the Independent Transparent Review that all the debating MP's had requested.  Therefore no agreement was ever or could have ever been reached.  The subject -effectively side stepped by the Minister - disposed of an awkward problem.

A change of Government ensued and all that  MP's and thousands of park home owners had worked for  on the 10% issue would be effectively buried - but the Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign and its Park-help-Line continued to receive distressing calls from Residents who felt TRAPPED in their homes because after giving 10% of their equity from the sale of their homes; they could only afford to move into a cheaper home of inferior quality.   Park home ownership is generally  for the retired person; those who need to sell their home to move into care are also seriously limited to the amount and quality of care they can afford.  The Campaign was urged by residents to continue the 10% fight against this outdated and inequitable charge.

Many Site Owners  live in mansions, drive luxury cars, fly helicopters and are prominent in the "Rich List."  Cash strapped residents watch on TV as a certain site owner who owns in excess of 40 parks flaunts his luxury mansion,  expensive cars and purports to have a 250 million pound fortune while still requiring 10% of home owners equity when they sell their homes - and he is not alone.  There are many just like him and even the smallest site owner is a millionaire in land value. 

The Industry states the 10% Commission Fee is a necessary income strand for the site owners business, without which businesses would flounder.
Residents challenge this statement and demand proof of the likely business failure. Site owners do absolutely nothing for the 10% that home owners are forced to pay them when they sell their home.  The average Park Home will sell for two hundred thousand pounds - that  produces  a gift to the park owner of twenty thousand pounds.  On the initial sale of the average home, site owners will make at least 60.000 pounds profit.  When the home is sold they receive 10% of their own profit.

PENSIONER Park Home Owners  demand PROOF THAT  MILLIONAIRS NEED their equity to prevent their businesses from failing.  They want an Independent and Transparent Review of the 10% charge that includes sight of the site owners certified audited accounts.  Only a thorough investigation by Government will provide proof that  site owners such as the  millionaire with a two hundred and fifty million pound fortune will suffer without 10% of the pensioners equity. 

No previous review has ever done a thorough independent inspection that looked at certified proof of accounting;  At a recent PACEC review in Wales, site owners were provided with a form and asked to fill it in.  Therefore, that report was part based on the site owners honesty!!! as they could write exactly what they liked with no given proof.  A fact referred to by researchers of that report.  

Our petition signed by park home owners from over 1000 parks demands  an Independent, Transparent Review of the 10% Commission Charge  with sight of the site owners certified accounting - along with a change from RPI to CPI on the annual increase to the pitch fee.

Sadly, because I have heard that Site Owners have threatened to pull their advertising from certain industry magazines if they publish our protest rally, they will not report fully on this subject. 

This is an affront to the elderly Park Home Owner who is being ripped of by an Industry that wants to paint a very different glossy picture of park home living.

That is why the Park Home Owners of EnglandScotland and Wales need the help of the media.  So may I respectfully ask you to please give our THREE NATIONS PROTEST RALLY  as much coverage as you can so this important issue can not be pushed under the carpet again.










WARM HOME DISCOUNT ANNOUNCEMENT


Last winter Charis Grants administered a government backed pilot scheme which gave park home residents the chance to apply for a £140 rebate for their electricity bill.

More than 1600 park home residents received rebates last year (including many supporters of the Justice Campaign).

From 5th December 2016 the scheme will be open again for applications, including those people who received an award from the pilot scheme earlier in the year.

For more information about the scheme and to apply for your £140 rebate, please visit www.parkhomeswhd.com or call the Charis team of dedicated agents on 0330 380 1040.





President of the National Park Home Owners JUSTICE Campaign


The Rt. Hon. Lord Graham of Edmonton (Lord Ted)


Quoting Hilaire Belloc.









26th March 2013


Such a bitter/sweet day.  The day we had all worked for.  The day when Her Majesty the Queen gave Royal Assent to the Bill.  The day that brought about the legislation to stop “Sale Blocking” and the day we received the new Mobile Homes Act 2013 (as amended.)  A momentous day for all Park Home Residents – but I have to say that it was a day I will never forget and I can honestly say that I had no thoughts on that day of the Bill that had consumed my days for some years.  It was sadly the day my husband Tony McColl - who was the rock behind me and the mountain behind our JUSTICE Campaign - passed away.
From the many cards received, I found comfort in the messages from park home residents throughout our country and the simple words of Lord Best will remain with me:  “Tony’s name will be forever enshrined with the Mobile Homes Act 2013.” 
Since that day (as Tony would have wished) our JUSTICE Campaign has listened to the plea from so many residents who asked if we could try to do something about the 10% commission charge - and we are trying to do something about it.
We have already delivered a 30,000 plus petition to Downing Street and this was followed by a debate in Parliament in October 2014; when all MP’s unanimously voted for an independent transparent review of this charge.  Sadly, the Minister did not grant this (but after all, he is only one man) and we are not going to accept this; notwithstanding that we now have a new Housing Minister.  We had to fight to get “sale blocking” stopped and we will have to fight to get justice on this front.
Sadly, there has been some scaremongering that if we should get a reduction or an abolishment of the 10% that it would be added to the pitch fee.
This is absolute rubbish because if MP’s know that an independent body - after completing a transparent review of the 10%  (which looks into the audited accounting of park owners)  - then declares that the 10% is not the necessary income strand without which the site owners business’s would go bankrupt; they would have no grounds to make any additions to your pitch fee.  AND LETS NOT FORGET THE MANY SITE OWNERS WHO FLAUNT THEIR WEALTH ON TELEVISION, FLY HELECOPTERS, LIVE IN MANSIONS, OWN MANY PARKS THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY AND DRIVE LUXURY CARS.   They are not reliant on 10% of your equity (which is also a totally unquantifiable charge as no one can guarantee how many homes would be sold in any one year.)  We must also not forget the site owners of single parks.  They are not poor as many purport to be; and I would take a guess that all are millionaires simply in the value of their land. 
So, it is put our best foot forward.  Our fellow park home owners in Wales have already obtained a transparent review of the 10% charge and are awaiting the outcome.  Their pitch fees also rise by CPI (which is what our pensions increase by) and not RPI which we in England have to endure.  Therefore, we are asking Government to do the right thing by us and change the rise in our annual pitch fees from the current RPI to CPI.
However, we must keep the pressure up and to that end; if you have not already signed the 10% petition, please download it from this site and get all your friends and relatives to sign.  The closing date for this petition is August 31st 2016.
Following this.  The presentation of this petition will take place at Downing Street in the spring of 2017. This is being arranged with the police and a rally of banner waving park home residents will accompany it to the Palace of Westminster. Not only will this be a fun day; but more importantly, it will show those at Westminster that we are not going away.  I believe this is the only way forward.  We have done it before and together we can do it again – but it will need park home residents from every part of our country to make the effort and come to London and I will publish the actual date on the 10% page of our JUSTICE Campaign as soon as it is confirmed. 
For the moment, our story lingers here and hopefully, very soon, the final chapter can be added.  One which I hope will see justice for all park home residents.  A change from RPI to CPI and a change in the crippling, outdated and inequitable 10% commission charge.