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Bell Pottinger North - Client News
Wednesday, March 22, 2006

One of the leading players in the holiday park market, John Morphet, has made his largest ever acquisition in the UK, Billing Aquadrome, Northampton, in a multi-million pound deal. The site is one of the largest independently owned parks in the UK.

Billing Aquadrome is set in 235 acres of parkland with nine lakes and provides sites for 2000 static and touring caravans. It offers an extensive range of leisure facilities, including a jet ski lake, fishing, licensed bars and a variety of entertainments. It also offers floating moorings on the park’s marina lake.

Its location makes it an ideal touring base for the many attractions in and around Northampton including Althorp House, Silverstone Raceway and Whipsnade Zoo.  It is also used extensively as a venue for a variety of rallys and themed weekends.

Included in the acquisition is the smaller Cogenhoe Mill Holiday Park just two miles from Billing Aquadrome. Adjacent to the River Nene, this provides waterside settings for 112 static caravans as well as thirty moorings.

The deal is the most significant domestic acquisition by Mr Morphet’s Pure Leisure Group and is part of his overall expansion plan for the Group in the UK.

He commented: “This leisure park is in a prime location in the middle of the country, easily accessible to the M1 and other major routes. There is considerable potential for upgrading the facilities at the park to improve the holiday experience for existing visitors and to attract new holidaymakers. We will be introducing a small rental fleet as well as introducing high quality lodges at the park.”

The park’s previous owners, the Mackaness family, had been connected with the estate for over 600 years.

Finance for the deal has been provided by HSBC, RBS and Barclays. Professional advisers to the Pure Leisure Group were KPMG and DLA.


For further information please contact: Vicki Baxter or Joanne Fletcher-Wall at Bell Pottinger North on 01625 617611 or vbaxter@bellpottingernorth.co.uk <mailto:vbaxter@bellpottingernorth.co.uk> or jfletcher-wall@bellpottingernorth.co.uk <mailto:jfletcher-wall@bellpottingernorth.co.uk>

Notes to Editors

Pure Leisure Group
The Pure Leisure Group is owned by UK based leisure entrepreneur John Morphet. Included within the group is South Lakeland Caravans a fast-growing company, which specialises in developing and operating holiday parks, with caravans and timber lodges for sale or hire. At selected parks there are also pitches for touring caravans. Established in 1988, it now has 12 UK locations ranging from smaller caravan parks to larger holiday villages complete with leisure facilities.

The UK locations are:

White Cross Bay Leisure Park & Marina, Windermere
Limefitt Leisure Park, Windermere
Fallbarrow Leisure Park, Bowness, Windermere
Gatebeck Caravan Park, Endmoor, near Kendal
Ocean Edge Leisure Park, Morecambe
Regent Leisure Park, Morecambe
Hawthorne Caravan Park, Morecambe
Marina Caravan Park, Glasson Dock, near Lancaster
Fell End Caravan Park, Hale, near Milnthorpe
Hall More Caravan Park, Hale, near Milnthorpe
Little Todber Caravan Park, Gisburn, Clitheroe
South Lakeland Leisure Village, Borwick, near Carnforth

The Pure Leisure Group also has three developments overseas:


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