STAYCATION: Booming Sheffield holiday park company up to 400 staff

A Sheffield holiday park firm is up to 400 staff after spending millions on sites serving the UK’s booming ‘staycation’ market.

By David Walsh
Tuesday, 30 July, 2019, 15:50
Husband and wife team: Coppergreen chief executive David Copley and wife Donna Copley, financial director.

Coppergreen Leisure Resorts has just opened a 60-lodge site at Clumber Park, next to the National Trust site between Nottingham and Sheffield, a year after buying the land - and six months after starting on site. It has created 35 jobs with another 65 in the pipeline.

It is also building an extension on its hotel at Kenwick Park in Lincolnshire where it has just installed 17 luxury lodges, with plans for another 70.

The firm bought both sites last year for £25.3m.

David and Donna Copley at Coppergreen's headquarters in Deepcar, Sheffield.

Meanwhile, some 35 lodges have been added to its Piperdam site near Dundee and Woodland Lakes, near Thirsk, North Yorkshire, is having new amenities including a new spa.

Chief executive David Copley said they continued to see a “huge increase” in people holidaying in the UK due to factors including the exchange rate and widespread travel chaos.

Coppergreen had seen a 16 per cent in customers in the last year.

He added: “These problems are encouraging people, particularly families, to stay the UK.”

Coppergreen was eyeing two further sites, he added.

“The speed we can develop them means we can go from a field to a location generating income within six months.

“We started at Clumber just before Christmas and now have 60 lodges, all on rental, a reception and a shop. We are very pleased. I think the investment proves our concept is a very good one.”

The firm is supported financially by the Business Growth Fund, backed by a consortium of banks, and HSBC.

Coppergreen has recently added in-house HR, marketing and health and safety departments.

But finding people with the right skills was the firm’s biggest headache, Mr Copley added.

“We can’t operate a business paying standard wages. We have to pay above market rates.

“The struggle is in finding the right quality.”

The company had also lost migrant workers who had gone home post-Brexit referendum, he added.