Published: May 28, 2012
Burnham-On-Sea holiday parks and MP welcome caravan tax U-turn

Holiday park bosses across the Burnham-On-Sea area have welcomed the news that the government is to downgrade its controversial plans to start charging VAT at 20 per cent on static caravans.

It comes after first reported earlier this month that park bosses had met Burnham's MP Tessa Munt to express their concerns about the proposals, which they claim would have led to job losses across the area.

Now, the government is set to reduce the intended 20% charge which was due to be levied on static caravans to 5%.

Steve Atkinson from Burnham's Home Farm Holiday Park told "This is much better than the 20% originally considered - I'm very happy and welcome the news."

And Michelle Ludlow from Brean's Dolphin Caravan Park said: "To have gone ahead with the full 20% tax increase would have been disastrous for the holiday industry and local jobs. The 5% increase is not ideal and any tax increase is bad, but this smaller increase will make a big difference and I'm greatly relieved."

MP Tessa Munt told on Monday evening: "This does look extremely good news and I am very pleased for all the caravan owners across the Burnham area. I congratulate them for coming forward and backing me up in arguing against the 20% tax increase. They put forward very strong arguments and I am delighted for them."

The U-turn from Chancellor George Osborne's Budget follows a large-scale protest by caravanning enthusiasts. The new 5% rate on static caravans will be delayed from October until April next year.

Earlier this month, Tessa Munt held a meeting in Westminster where a number of local caravan park owners met with Treasury Minister David Gauke MP to explain at first hand the impact a planned rise in VAT on static caravans would have on Somerset's economy.


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