Tankerton Bay Beach Hut Owners Association
URGENT NEWS URGENT NEWS
IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT BEACH HUT OWNERS RESPOND AS SOON AS POSSIBLE TO THE DRAFT DOCUMENTS WHICH HAVE BEEN SENT TO YOU BY THE COUNCIL.
Please do not delay. Send your views to Richard Griffiths at the address given to you in the documents, and please send us a copy too, so that we may keep a record of comments.
WE NOW CANNOT DO THIS ALONE. We have been told that your comments will carry weight with the Council.
DO NOT WASTE THIS CHANCE!
The Tankerton Bay Beach Hut Owners' Association
27 Fitzroy Road
Kent, CT5 2LG
TANKERTON BAY BEACH HUT OWNERS’ ASSOCIATION & BEACH HUT WATCH SCHEME
12th November 2013
FOR YOUR URGENT ATTENTION
As you are well aware, we have been in negotiation with Canterbury City Council for a very long time about the Lease under which we all rent our Hut Sites from the Council. During the summer we have been working hard in the background, and now have a number of things to report to you.
There are two strands to the negotiations. The first concerns the Lease document. The second relates to the future of our Rental arrangements.
Back in June, we were advised that the Council’s legal team were taking external advice about certain definitions concerning the legality of some clauses in the proposed Lease document. Since that advice was received, we have repeatedly asked for the conclusions, but so far have not been allowed to see the advice in full nor even a summary of it.
As recently as 5th November we were told by Suzi Wakeham (who heads the relevant department) that the new Lease will be sent to all hut owners on Wednesday, 13th November.
We have seen this today, and there are many things for us to consider. On the upside, it appears that we have been granted our full Right to Buy and Sell, as we have always enjoyed over the years. However, there are swingeing rental increases to concern us.
The Council embarked on a “Benchmarking Exercise” in the summer, which we and the Herne Bay Beach Hut Owners’ Association have been involved in. This has been carried out to compare our rental arrangements with a number of other councils around the South East of the country. In all, about 50 individual localities were brought into the calculations, and a number of points of comparison were registered. We attempted to find out the annual total cost of running a hut, together with the cost rated by the area of the huts.
It is not at all clear, however, that the Council has taken the result of this exercise into consideration – hence our surprise at the suggested new annual rents.
What happens next?
We have two meetings with the Council, scheduled for 20th November regarding the Benchmarking exercise, and 4th December regarding the Lease.
We will be giving urgent consideration to the various documents and will be writing to all members very soon.
Beach Hut Insurance
Another matter that we need to discuss is the question of Beach Hut Insurance. We had previously warned you that the new Lease requires us all to have Public Liability Insurance with cover of £5 million. The market for Beach Hut Insurance is definitely a niche market, and we are also aware that many members do not presently carry insurance on their huts. However, despite our endeavours over a long time, the Council will not accept this situation.
We would stress that this is not just a requirement of our Council. It is now mandatory with Local and National Government that everyone MUST have Public Liability Insurance. It is possible that you may insure for the insurance company’s minimum amount, but you will still receive the full benefit of £5 Million of Public Liability Insurance.
If you already have Beach Hut Insurance, you will already have the £5 million cover required.
We are not yet aware of exactly when the new requirements will take effect. However, this is one of the questions that we will be asking at our next meeting with the Council.
There are three principal players in this insurance market. You will be aware that we have been on friendly terms with TL Risk Solutions. However, Towergate took over TL Risks, and the team that ran TL Risks split off and has now formed Love Your Hut. Ryan Insurance is the third.
The companies have excellent websites that will help your considerations, and there is information on them on our own website.
Please do read through the Council’s documents carefully when they arrive, and make contact with us as needed. Please also write to the Council expressing your views about the new Lease and Rental structure, and copy us into your comments, either by email or letter. In that way we will be able to present your views to the Council, either at our face- to- face meetings, or at the Council’s Executive Committee meeting on 12th December, which will be held at the Guildhall in Canterbury. We may well ask you later to come to Council Meetings in support of our presentations.
Thank you for your continuing support.
Alan Buckett Chairman, Negotiating sub-Committee
John Marsh Chairman & Treasurer, Main Committee
Marilyn Richards Secretary
The Tankerton Bay Beach Hut Owners’ Association
If you wish to contact us by email or post, write to Marilyn Richards at:-
27, Fitzroy Road
Kent, CT5 2LG
"AGM for 2013?"
You will all have been waiting for this year's Notice of Annual General Meeting, which we usually hold in late October/November of each year. However, for the second time in three years, Canterbury City Council has strung out our negotiations with them (and postponed two of our most recent meetings) with the result that we still have nothing concrete to tell our members about the plans for our new beach hut leases at an AGM. We are still hopeful, however, of a good result, and have two meetings now arranged with the Council (on the 20th November, regarding the beach hut benchmarking exercise) and on the 4th December (regarding our leases).
This does not give us time enough to prepare for our AGM before Christmas, and so we plan to hold this in the New Year.
However, once we have had our second meeting on the 4th December, we will send out a Newsletter giving you all an idea of what we have been able to negotiate. The Council knows that we will refer the results of these negotiations to all of our members, and so it will be vital for as many of you as possible to attend the AGM in the New Year, in order put your views forward. We may not be able to do everything that you have asked us to do, but do know that we will have tried our very best. Your support of our work at the AGM may make a difference in the end.
If any of you have any queries or suggestions in the meantime, do let us know.
The Tankerton Bay Beach Hut Owners' Association
Since 2001 we have been representing our members who own beach huts in Tankerton.
Our aim is to represent the interests of our members and provide services to them.
We aim to make the area safe, pleasant and a fun place to visit.
We are run by a team of voluntary helpers and if you would like to become involved in
any way, we would very much like to hear from you.
Annual Membership is from only £5 per year and is open to anyone who owns a
beach hut in Tankerton, so if you would like to become a member, simply click here to join.