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Normandy bucks credit crunch trends

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SINCE we visited the Normandy Holiday Homes manufacturing unit a few years ago, production has almost trebled, as has capacity in the factory. The manufacturing units next door and over the road have been drawn into the production process – not a bad response to a recession!

Normandy was for many years a manufacturer that concentrated on the export market. Things have now changed, to the extent that approaching half of the units produced are UK-bound – indeed, one of the manufacturing units is given over exclusively to building twin unit homes for the UK market.

Normandy now offers a spread of four caravan-style holiday homes and eight standard lodges. There is no ultra cheap model, since the company concentrates instead on good build quality and spec.

The cheapest is a 35x12 Thornham caravan-style holiday home, at around £23,000 ex-works retail. At the other end of the price range is the twin unit Carrick, which, at 45ftx22ft 3ins, costs around £109,500. (Both prices exclude transport, siting and pitch costs of course.)

Still popular is the Helme, which has a mid-range price tag for a lodge, the 40ft by 20ft model costing a little over £79,000 ex works. Since its beginnings the Helme has been much improved, so it’s well worth a second look.

The latest range, designed especially for the UK, is the Bayeux, which is available in both caravan and lodge styles (and we’ll be reviewing it next issue).

Normandy enjoyed an encouraging show at the NEC this year, and is optimistic about the current market for holiday homes, with lodges particularly popular. An important development for Normandy is the setting up of its own sales team. Alison Brankley has been appointed Sales Manager, and she is very focused on what people want, and the price they want to pay. She is very approachable and a good person to talk to – you will not be pressurised.

A Normandy customer, Sammy Wood, was keeping an eye on the build of a Bayeux lodge for Burton Constable Lodge Park. “Normandy is a good manufacturer with excellent after-sales,” she told me. She is impressed by the three year warranty on holiday homes.

From a park that has taken models from Cosalt, Advent and Omar, Sammy is of the opinion that Normandy is “up there with the best of them”. Being fairly local is also a plus for her, as she can visit at any stage to see how a unit is progressing. She has been able to specify customised versions of the standard model.

The policy of Normandy to be open about their production extends to customers being able to chat to the lads on the production line. It is good to feel involved with your major purchase, or you may be on a park where, like Sammy, they will represent your interests.

Making an appointment to visit Normandy and seeing what you can get for your money could be well worth while. Or arrange to see an already sited model on a park – ask Normandy for details – and take it from there.


CONTACT


For more info, tel: 01482 475100, email: [email protected] web: www.normandy-holiday-homes.co.uk.


This review was published in the July 2010 issue of Park & Holiday Homes. To order your copy please click here

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