GREY nomads and caravan owners from across the northern suburbs are concerned they won’t have anywhere to park their vehicles from next month.
More than 200 people have stored their caravans, mobile homes and trailers on Monty Shipman’s Jandabup property, but the City of Wanneroo said it was not allowed in the general rural zone.
Mr Shipman received a notice from the City of Wanneroo this month ordering him to stop using the land at 90 Rousset Road as a storage yard.
He was given 61 days from August 2 to remove all unauthorised stored items, including caravans, boats, scaffolding and building materials.
If the property owner doesn’t comply, he will be liable to pay up to $200,000 and $25,000 for each day after the deadline that the offence continues.
The City’s planning and sustainability director Mark Dickson said the storage yard use was not permitted in the general rural zone, while home businesses, rural industry, agriculture and stables were allowed.
“A property owner wishing to offer storage capabilities on their lot must either have a zoning which permits a ‘storage yard’ or have the City’s approval for this use on their lot,” he said.
“The owner of the property does not have either of these.
“A storage yard is a permitted use in the general industrial zone and a discretionary use in the services industrial zone, and is not permitted in other zones.”
Mr Dickson said the City received and investigated a complaint that more than 50 caravans were parked at the property.
Butler residents Jan and Reston Monck were told they couldn’t park a caravan out the front of their property so Mr Shipman’s facility provided a service they needed.
Mrs Monck said owners found out this week that they would have to remove their vehicles.
“Everyone is up in arms,” Mrs Monck said.
“It inhibits us living our life the way we want to.”
Her husband said it could mean people would have to sell them and a drop in demand could affect caravan manufacturers.
“This is going to affect tourism,” Mr Monck said.
Mr Dickson said people were allowed to store one caravan within private property in residential areas.
While the City was not aware of specific vehicle storage premises within its boundaries, Mr Dickson said storage yards could potentially gain approval in industrial estates such as Wangara or Neerabup.
Grey nomads Richard and Helen Wood said there was huge demand for the service and the vehicles would “end up littering the gardens and house fronts” without it.
“The owner of this facility has always provided us with a safe and secure place to store our caravan,” they said.
“This business is doing absolutely no harm to the environment and is providing a much needed facility.”
Several owners said they didn’t have space at their homes to store caravans, including Sorrento resident Mark McNally who lives in a townhouse.
“A lot of us live in properties that don’t have anywhere to store them,” he said.
Darch resident Mervyn Barrett said he and wife Cheryl lived in an over 55 village located between two schools.
“We have nowhere to store our caravan in the area,” he said.
“Without economical storage we will be forced to sell our caravan.
“It seems pedantic for the council to take such a hardnosed approach to caravan storage when there is such a strong demand for the service.
“The location is away from the residential area, among market gardens, horse properties and undeveloped bush land.”
Currambine resident John Willett said it would be a challenge to fit his caravan on his property and the service was valuable to those storing caravans, mobile homes, campers and large four-wheel-drives.
“There is a significant need for this kind of facility in Perth and the number of people availing of the space is growing each week,” he said.
“The caravan or camping industry is a significant growth industry and figures are available to show that in the 35 to 55 age group the increase is quite extraordinary.
“Add this to the ‘grey nomad’ and you have one of the strongest sectors in the economy.”
Site a former nursery
MONTY Shipman said he ran a wholesale nursery on the Jandabup property for 20 years from 1988 but stopped that when the area was flagged for future development.
To earn a living, he started storing scaffolding material in 2008 and then expanded to caravans and other vehicles in 2016.
“I’ve got no income,” the 73-year-old said.
“Because of the value of the property, I can’t get a pension.”
While the area is set to be rezoned urban deferred for future development, Mr Shipman said houses could not be built on it at the moment.
“I can’t sell it now because there’s a mushroom farm across the road and we are in the 500m buffer zone,” he said.
His partner Jackie Swailes said while they could run the nursery by growing plants in pots, the proximity to Jandabup Lake meant they could not plant crops on the property.