Felixstowe: Demand still high for beach huts and chalets despite rent rises

Angry beach hut owners gathered on Felixstowe's promenande to march against beach hut and chalet re

Angry beach hut owners gathered on Felixstowe's promenande to march against beach hut and chalet rent rises at Felixstowe. - Credit: Archant

TOURISM bosses say there has not been a rush for people to hand in their chalet keys or give back their beach hut sites following this year’s big rent rises.

Suffolk Coastal increased the cost of hut sites by 12% and chalet rents 20% to raise extra cash to pay for resort services, saying there was a demand for huts and chalets.

One person who had been waiting for a chalet for several years said they had been moving up a few places on the list each year.

He said: “We had been around 150 places from the top of the list last year and then this year we received a letter offering us a chalet – very unexpected.”

A Suffolk Coastal spokesman said the claim appeared to be “quite wide of the mark” as numbers on the list had been growing by 20 to 30 a year.

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He said: “As is always the case, just because someone is on the waiting list does not mean they necessarily take up the option of a chalet when it is offered to them, as it may not be in the position they want and they may be prepared to wait another year or two.

“However, the facts are that we had written to the top 50 on the waiting list and 11 of our 16 vacant chalets have now been taken up. “This week we wrote to the next 20 to fill the remaining five and are very confident that all the chalets will soon be taken up.

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“There is always a turn-over of chalets every year at this time for licences to be renewed and we only have five more empty chalets to offer than we did this time last year.

“So while there has been a very small increase in vacancies this year compared to last year, the demand to fill those chalets does show that the council is correct in its view that this service remains very good value for money.”

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