It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Austin, and to speak in this debate. Helen Whately made a convincing case for the need for protection of leisure park homes. She also painted a lovely picture of her constituency. Is it any wonder that people want to go to the rolling hills of the north downs and retire there? What a terrible thing it is when they find that it is not quite what they expected.
We heard tales of pitch fees increasing, and about the culture of fear and mis-selling. Sir Desmond Swayne rightly asked who some of the people running these homes are, and what can be done about the problems. Jim Shannon asked why nothing had been done, when he has been raising these issues for some years. Gillian Keegan talked about people feeling almost “stateless”, which is a strong and apt word.
Peter Aldous talked about his role with regard to previous legislation, and made a really important point about the need to protect the tourism industry. Anything that we do must not damage that. James Heappey told us that his area is second only to Skegness in its concentration of caravans, and we must listen to what he has to say.