May 21 2013 Latest news:
By sophie wyllie
Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Woodhill Park camping and caravan site at East Runton near Cromer, owned by the Norfolk family business Blue Sky Leisure, opened its larger combined reception area and shop yesterday.
The beach-themed wooden building cost £85,000 to refurbish and will offer a tourist information-type service for holidaymakers at the park and visitors to north Norfolk.
Mark Durrant, operations manager of parks and leisure for Blue Sky Leisure, said the building was a “one-stop shop” and created a “wow factor”.
He said: “If you don’t look to invest, unfortunately you are on a slippery slope.
“Business at Woodhill Park has maintained itself through a difficult economic climate. We recognise that and want to continue, hence the investment, rather than standing still and going backwards in terms of customer experience.”
He said visitor numbers had increased over the past four years; 60pc of people who stayed at the park each year were from Norfolk; and 81pc were returning customers.
Blue Sky Leisure bought the site, which is open between March and October, in 1989 and hires up to 25 people from the local area in peak season.
Woodhill Park currently has 16 caravans which are hired out, 300 pitches for touring caravans and tents and 50 privately-owned caravans.
Its sister site, also owned by Blue Sky Leisure, is Kelling Health Holiday Park near Holt, and the £85,000 refurbishment was part of a £500,000 investment into both parks.
The Woodhill Park shop sells everything from beach toys to locally made bread, chilli sauces and milk.
“Wherever possible, we are trying to source local food to boost the local economy,” Mr Durrant said.
He added: “Tourism is vitally important in Norfolk.”
The holiday park manager said 51,000 people in the county – 14.5pc of Norfolk’s working population – were employed in the tourism industry.
Mr Durrant said: “Norfolk is a great location because you have got the bucket and spade culture in Cromer, through to woodland walks in Sheringham and fantastic wildlife on the coast at Cley. There are also great beaches from Holkham to Hunstanton. It has got everything you would want.”
The £85,000 refurbishment project was designed by Great Yarmouth firm 99 Design. The contractor was Grace Contracts from Norwich.
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