Government’s caravan U-turn is welcomed

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Lorraine Blackburn

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THE managing director of a caravan park in West Sussex has welcomed a government U-turn.

The government yesterday announced it will not be introducing 20 per cent VAT on static caravans, but will instead add five per cent.

VAT on static vans was previously zero.

John Bunn, of Bunn Leisure based in Selsey, said: ‘It was estimated that the increase would result in at least 4,000 job losses at holiday parks across the UK, 1,500 in the manufacturing sector and an additional 1,500 at suppliers.

‘In fact one manufacturer, Willerby Holiday Homes had already announced that about half of its 688-strong workforce could be made redundant and issued a 90-day notice to that effect.

‘The mercurial change from George Osborne’s Budget follows a large scale and effective campaign by the industry trade body, the National Caravan Council, park operators, manufacturers, suppliers, caravan owners and holidaymakers, all of whom put pressure on the government to engage and listen to the industry and it now appreciates the devastating impact of the original proposals.’