Success of Sir David Attenborough’s BBC series Wild Isles is supporting holiday homes boom, says boss of Willerby
Willerby has posted the best results in the company’s 77-year history as the business continues to capitalise on the growing popularity of staycations. In the company’s latest accounts, for the year to October 1 2022, Willerby recorded turnover of £217m, which is an increase of 67 per cent from the £129.9m recorded the year before. Operating profits rocketed to £15.1m, a fourfold increase on £3m the previous year, and adjusted EBITDA reached £17.2m, which is growth of 224 per cent on £5.3m recorded the year before. Willerby is the UK’s largest manufacturer of static caravans and lodges, building a third of new units destined for holiday parks. It also operates a growing residential park homes brand.
A spokesman said: “The company is at the forefront of an important and growing UK manufacturing industry, which is clustered in Hull and East Yorkshire and employs 20,000 people directly or indirectly within the region.”
CEO Peter Munk said: “There’s no doubt there has been a structural change in the market since COVID, which we believe will benefit our business and industry over the long term. The UK has some of the world’s most stunning locations, currently being showcased to millions of people in Sir David Attenborough’s beautiful BBC series Wild Isles. The appeal of the British countryside and coast has never been greater. We’ve also seen very significant institutional investment into the staycation market, especially in the holiday parks sector, and in upgrading facilities at sites across the country.
“That has all fed through to a sustained surge in holiday home ownership and bookings at holiday parks which has, in turn, generated very strong demand for our static caravans, lodges and residential park homes.”
Willerby Chief Financial Officer Sue Allan said: “Our results in the previous two business years were severely impacted by COVID and the latest full year was very much a game of two halves. During the first half of the year, performance continued to be hindered by the impact of
COVID restrictions on our own operations and our suppliers. However, once those restrictions ended in late February we were able to move forward and go from strength to strength.”