Booking bungle: Campers call on council to clear up rules
It is an Aussie tradition.
A family’s annual migration to a beach side caravan park for a few weeks each year.
For Peter and Vikky Kerr, Burrum Heads has been the chosen destination for three weeks of fishing, camping and relaxing every year, for 33 years.
The couple watched their children grow as they played in the council owned caravan park and they developed lifelong friendships with other annual visitors to the area.
Now, after 17 years on the same campsite, a booking bungle and mixed messages from management means the retirees won’t be able to return to their favourite patch of paradise next year.
The couple want the council to clear things up so loyal tourists like them aren’t left in the lurch.
Rules on the campground website and on signs posted around the park clearly stated bookings would not be accepted more than 12 months in advance.
So, when the Brisbane couple arrived at the front desk exactly one year ahead of the booking and requested to rebook for the following year, they were surprised to learn the site had been claimed by a different family.
The couple managed to speak with the family who had booked the spot for next year and were told park management had told them they were unable to book the following year for their usual dates so instead offer them later weeks.
It started a chain of events which has impacted five families who have been coming to the park for at least 15 years.
Each group has been offered a different resolution which has left Vikky and Peter scratching their head.
“It isn’t fair,” she said.
One site were able to get their booking for next year on their preferred site reinstated after sending 32 emails to council regarding the issue, another set of campers were able to get in writing that they could rebook their most loved site in 2022.
BelgraviaPro management, which runs the park, have offered the couple an alternative site further from the beach at a discounted rate but the couple say it’s a matter of principle.
They’ve spent the past two weeks frustrated and say they are fighting for fairness amid concerns something that should have been simple has attracted conflicting responses from management and the council had until yesterday washed its hands of the issue.
The council responded to the couple to discuss the issue after being contacted by the Chronicle.
Fraser Coast Regional Council CEO Ken Diehm spoke personally to Peter and Vikky and he “will not intervene to cancel the other party’s booking.”
The Chronicle requested to speak directly with Belgravia Pro and the council responded on behalf of both.