Bit of advice?

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by indianwells, Aug 4, 2012.

  1. indianwells

    indianwells
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    Background. I run a holiday park in the leisure industry. For the past 3 years I have had regular complaints about the behaviour of one families children. The complaints have been varied, some trivial and some more serious. I decided to issue a warning that unless their behaviour improves they are leaving. We have a licence agreement they sign each year to agree they will abide by the terms.

    My problem is I haven't witnessed them doing this myself. I rely on other clients telling me of their activities. To date I have had reports of these incidents from 12-15 different and unconnected couples and also from my own staff.

    In reply I have had feedback from the parents that their children could not possibly have done any of the things I have informed them of. It is quite a diatribe and they are demanding a meeting with me.

    I'm open to meeting them but they are adament their children would never do such things and I am equally adament that so many adults would not have complained without reason. This I fear would be a meeting with emotions running high with both parties going round in circles and not achieving anything but bad feeling.

    I know some people think their kids cannot possibly do anything wrong and will defend them unconditionally but I was also a kid once and if my parents asked me if I had done something I would deny it. It's what kids do. I will compose an email back to them, just wanted to tap into the experience on here first if anyone could offer some help. I don't mind doing it through pm, in fact that may be better.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Eric

    Eric
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    We sold our static caravan because of this same thing. Unruly kids and nothing was done about it. Running around the park at 11pm at night, banging on the side of vans.

    IMO, get rid before people start to leave themselves!
     
  3. Miss Mandy

    Miss Mandy
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    You've got a business to run and you've got to look out for not only your own best interests, but also that of the other guests. If it was a one of incident or the same people complaining all the time, I wouldn't be too concerned, but as its lots of different people complaining that would suggest there is a problem there.
    I would hazard a guess that the parents generally have no idea what the kids are ever doing as they probably just leave them to run around entertaining themselves while they do other things.
    I would agree to a meeting and just make sure you stay calm and stick to the facts of the complaints. You'll get further in the long run by at least trying to resolve the issue with these parents. Don't let yourself get too heated up as it'll end up a mess. Explain clearly that the problem has to stop or they'll be banned from the site.
    As with zerpico's case above, if you can't nip it in the bud you risk losing customers over this family, and that's not the way you want it.
     
  4. Trollslayer

    Trollslayer
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    Can you get some of the complaints in writing? On a simple form perhaps? These will not be shown to the problem fmaily, just so you have a record.
    As Mandy has said, you state what has happened, under NO circumstances let it turn into a negotiation or argument.
    Sadly there are people who will lie with a straight face and lie to themselves as well.
     
  5. Autopilot

    Autopilot
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    I agree with the above post, get the complaints in writing.

    CCTV an option?

    Not nice, but could be better than losing customers. If I was one of your customers I would expect robust action, if not I would leave.
     
  6. Eric

    Eric
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    We found the parents of the kids where we were, were either just as bad or in denial like yours seem to be. Get rid or eventually you will have people like us, which just left in the end. It also was not just us that went! At £2,500 just for ground fee's per year, its a lot to loose!
     
  7. indianwells

    indianwells
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    Thanks for the input, some very valid points and I know I have to address this sooner rather than later. I have some meetings now but I will be online tomorrow am and will certainly come back to everyone!
     
  8. 961

    961
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    Have you any friends in the industry who could recommend a solicitor that deals with such problems?
    Ensure the licence agreement is watertight
    Ensure details of all complaints are kept in writing, you know the drill
    It needs sorting for all the reasons in this thread, but I'd suggest if a meeting is to take place it needs to be with your solicitor present otherwise it will descend into a slanging match
    I wouldn't reply by e-mail. I'd get your solicitor to write
    It may cost a few hundred but it may save thousands
    If they know you mean business they may just keep their kids in order
     
  9. paulyoung666

    paulyoung666
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    not sure if it has been mentioned , but you deffo need someone to take minutes at the meeting , that will be agreed upon and signed by both parties .....
     
  10. walleee

    walleee
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    why speak to a solicitor or have someone take minutes, is this holiday park on public land or something?

    If it's private (which I'm assuming it is) can't you decide who is and isn't allowed?
     
  11. Trollslayer

    Trollslayer
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    Taking minutes means that IW has a record of the meeting as well as a second person present.
    This way if the family try to cause legal problems he has evidence and they don't.
     
  12. simon ess

    simon ess
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    I'm with walleee on this.

    I don't understand why you can't just ask them to leave or not take their booking.

    If there is a reason, could someone enlighten me?
     
  13. shahedz

    shahedz
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    Also , just because you havent witnessed it isn't so much of an issue. The fact there have been numerous complaints and more importantly your own staff have witnessed it is more than enough.
     
  14. unique

    unique
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    i'd suggest finding out where you stand legally to see if you can stop the problem family without any proof

    you also need to think about what you ideally want to happen. if you don't get rid of the problem family you might lost business from other families, so whilst you would lose business from the problem family it might save you losing more business, and i presume you could potentially get more business to cover the family you may want to kick out
     
  15. simon ess

    simon ess
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    This is the bit I'm not getting.

    Surely a private business can choose to sell to / serve whoever they want. No legal stuff required.

    Am I missing something here?
     
  16. unique

    unique
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    they aren't doing a simple sale or supply or services, they are providing something in relation to accomodation. as to what it's not quite clear if the caravan is owned by the park and rented to the family, or if the family own the caravan and rent the land in the park where it resides

    thus as it relates to accommodation, other rules may apply. notice may need to be given to terminate the lease, etc etc etc. some people reside in caravan parks so presumably there are laws preventing them being made homeless, so similar laws may apply to some degree

    these are the things that the businesses lawyer should know and be able to help with, including helping to ensure the appropriate paperwork is used to terminate any residency if required
     
  17. simon ess

    simon ess
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    Aah right, thanks. I get that.

    But didn't the OP say it was a holiday park?
     
  18. unique

    unique
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    yes, but the mention of a yearly lease. nothing to say that it was only open for certain times of the year. some caravan parks are open all year round and some live in them permanently
     
  19. simon ess

    simon ess
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    Perhaps the OP could clarify that bit.
     
  20. indianwells

    indianwells
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    Sorry, I didn't clarify that. It is a privately owned caravan which we allow to be pitched on our land in return for an annual pitch fee.
     
  21. indianwells

    indianwells
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    Thanks all! I've sent them a letter, very carefully worded, non-threatening and a little conciliatory, but letting them know they are at the last chance saloon. Tread softly but carry a big stick sort of thing. Let's hope it does the trick.
     
  22. Thug

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    You have go to ask yourself, would you rather keep these 12/15 couples as customers or this one 'possible' troublesome family?
    You may need to choose at the end of the day, and do so BEFORE people jump ship.
    Dont forget not everyoner will complain, so you can gaurentee that there will be more than 12/15 as others will have seen it too. Not only that but people talk and you could see a lot more jumping ship.

    The choice is yours, but i know which i would rather have.
     
  23. shahedz

    shahedz
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    Do you think it's worthwhile letting all the people know that have complained you have taken action? There could be others that haven't gone as far as making a compliant but have been inconvenienced by this family.
     
  24. Trollslayer

    Trollslayer
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    Good.
    One obvious point, keep a copy of the letter. A paper trail may shut them up if they try to argue again.
     
  25. indianwells

    indianwells
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    Thanks, yes, every letter or email goes into their file.I learnt a long time ago that a paper trail is vital when disputes arise, especially when a case of "they said this we said that" arises.
     
  26. indianwells

    indianwells
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    Thanks all, your advice is really helpful. Although I have been in this game for 23 years I am always conscious of the fact that you never know everything, even if you think you do!

    I've replied in a calm and professional manner (I hope) so fingers crossed they will too. I am hopeful as they are not the proverbial scumbags and are very intelligent people, they just refuse to believe their "little angels" are capable of such behaviour. If not then hey ho, I can be a git if necessary.:smashin:
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2012
  27. walleee

    walleee
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    I was thinking that there was likely some sort of lease or contract, but it sounds like you've got it under control anyway. They've been given a warning, logic suggests if you get more and more complaints they haven't sorted out what ever the problem is and won't really have much in the way of a defence if you decide to terminate/ refuse to renew their contract...
     

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