Caravan restrictions meet mixed response

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Proposals to restrict the opening times of new caravan site licenses divided opinion among coastal councillors at East Lindsey District Council’s latest meeting on Wednesday.

The recommendations, which form part of ELDC’s Draft Core Strategy, prohibit new caravan parks from opening outside March 15 and October 31 to minimise flood risks.

Coun Mark Anderson reiterated his staunch opposition to the proposals, along similar lines to comments he made in last week’s Standard, when he said it would ‘kill’ the local economy. However Coun Neil Cooper felt Coun Anderson’s support for developing caravan park licenses beyond those dates would ‘risk lives’ and therefore was happy to endorse the report.

Planning committee vice-chairman Coun Steve O’Dare, commenting after the meeting, also wanted to stress the restrictions only applied to residential developments, so that appropriate business developments could still be supported.

“Skegness is 100 per cent open for business,” he said.

He was also eager to assure those in existing caravan sites that the recommendations only applied to new developments, so their current licensing periods would be unaffected.

As the Environment Agency is strongly opposed to residential developments operating in flood zones during the high-risk winter period and a powerful consultee in planning applications, Coun O’Dare felt it wise to formulate a development framework, which it would support.