Opinion: Annual holiday leases on caravan sites

Victorian government deems automatic renewal of Crown land leases unfair

Do you think a two to three-year wait for an annually-leased caravanning and camping site on Crown land unfair?

According to the Victorian government, it is.

Lyall Johnson, spokesperson for the environment minister, Gavin Jennings, said the government’s recent move to shut down the automatic roll-over of these leases was about giving other campers a fair go. Under the previous arrangement, existing leaseholders had an "unfair advantage".

"People could hold a permit and lock out a site for a decade or more," he said.

Mr Johnson said that waiting lists for annual camping leases on the most popular parks on Crown land were between two and three years. He said the Great Ocean Road Coast Committee, which develops projects to enhance the coast’s natural and cultural values, was one of the community committees consulted.

Victorian Caravan Parks Association (VicParks) executive officer Peter Corish said VicParks – whose members include leaseholders of caravan parks on Crown land – had not been consulted during the decision-making process. Mr Corish said he learned of the changes by reading an online news report, and that the VicParks would decide an appropriate response.

"Long term annuals are going to have to take their units from there and there will be financial disadvantage to them," Mr Corish said.

"Some of these people are paying $5000 a year."

  • Is the Victorian government’s move to cease the automatic roll-over of annual caravan and camping leases on Victorian Crown land a bid to ‘clean up’ prime real estate or is it fair?