On 9 Oct 2015 at 2:24pm Mark Ruddick wrote:
This may seem like a bit of an odd request but we are currently in the planning stages of an idea and trying to gather a little information from the people of Lewes. My partner and I will both be returning to Lewes in January 2016 to work seasonally at The Glyndebourne Opera House (She works in props and I am a fight choreographer/actor). For the past 4 years we have rented digs (I had one year camping on the downs) but this year we are exploring some money saving options by buying an RV and living off grid. The aim is to save some money and enjoy a little outdoor adventure at the same time.
We have bought a self sustaining vehicle (Gas and Solar with a compost toilet. No sewage to worry about! and we are now looking for some lovely people who wouldn't mind our parking up at the bottom of a field, end of a long driveway or similar out of the way spot. The idea behind our adventure is to save money for a real house together and unfortunately local camp sites work out more expensive than renting a room which defeats the object of what we are trying to do.
We are happy to offer a little beer money (£80 a month) or to take on a few odd jobs in return for letting us park up and for the occasional use of a tap to fill up our water. The vehicle is 26 feet long and has a slight retro feel, though it has been updated recently and is very quiet and when running. We are quiet, clean and unobtrusive working 9am till 6pm at the opera house and promise that we will always try and bring the fun. We simply need a patch to stop and some like minded people to help us on our adventure.
If you think that you may have a spot we could use then both Mel and I would be really excited to hear from you.
All the best
Mark and Mel
My number 07853343547 my email email@example.com
Mels Number 07742620391 Mels email firstname.lastname@example.org
Oh yea Mel loves Dinosaurs.
This means she christened our motorhome Dippy
On 9 Oct 2015 at 3:24pm Ducatipete wrote:
This must be a wind up.Are you proposing to pay anything into the system like Council Tax. If not join the other spongers who live on the Downs around Wild Park, Moulscombe and the top of Ditchling Road.
On 9 Oct 2015 at 3:27pm Chap wrote:
Brighton is ideal for crustie-vans; hopefully the Lewes zone is soon to be cleared up.
On 9 Oct 2015 at 3:33pm Belladonna wrote:
Maybe you could ask the Christie family - they have a lot of fields! Or you might ask the people who have a community out at Laughton. I think however £20 a week is taking the mickey a bit. You might also try the scheme where people get to live in accommodation for free but contribute through working the land - someone on Zu studios Facebook site will have contacts. Or you could talk to Crispin Tebbutt who is a local farmer and sometimes allows campers on his land....
On 9 Oct 2015 at 3:49pm Mark ruddick wrote:
Thank you Belledonna I appreciate the advice. I realise that we are not offering that much in way of cash which is why we are quite happy to offer our time and work in exchange to make up the short fall. thank you.
On 9 Oct 2015 at 4:36pm Cobnut wrote:
If I had the land I would welcome you, I hope you find somewhere
On 9 Oct 2015 at 5:56pm mavis wrote:
try the phoenix quarter, they all live free in caravans! mind you, yours sounds quite smart in comparison !
On 9 Oct 2015 at 6:34pm Colonist wrote:
As mentioned, the place that used to be Laughton Lodge. Previously known as a Colony for mental defectives.
On 9 Oct 2015 at 8:28pm Earl of Lewes wrote:
Try the J D Courtney website, which has farm property rentals. Quite a few farmers let campervan owners use their space for a small fee.
On 9 Oct 2015 at 9:47pm Chap wrote:
An answer about council tax etc would be appreciated please...
On 9 Oct 2015 at 9:57pm No Pot Pourri wrote:
£80 a month seems crazy small - especially as you want water included, but I would be really interested to hear how you get on.
Clearly not scroungers as both are working, and as they aspire to a home of their own they will doubtless end up contributing plenty to the system over the years.
There are times in life when a 'leg-up' is really helpful.
On 9 Oct 2015 at 10:06pm Tipex wrote:
If I had space you'd be welcome. Good luck.
On 10 Oct 2015 at 8:17am Earl of Lewes wrote:
Re: the tax issue - As they don't own a property and are barely using any of the local facilities, Council Tax isn't relevant. They will be paying Road Tax for the campervan plus tax on their wages at Glyndebourne, if they exceed the threshold.
I don't know why some people are hostile to a young couple who are, after all, working rather than living on benefits. I say good luck to them.
On 10 Oct 2015 at 9:40am Colonial boy wrote:
Ignore the thumbs down - drive to Laughton Lodge and ask the residents. It has artists and people of that ilk. They can only say no. It's on Google, and there are flats for sale there.
On 10 Oct 2015 at 1:06pm Horseman7 wrote:
Whilst I haven't got anywhere for you to park I would be happy to refill your water tank when required. I could also let you use my hoover and cleaning materials. In exchange I would ask you to clear my gutters (I have a long ladder) and put some stuff in my loft, i.e. a couple of tasks which are now beyond this creaky old woman.
As a self-employed sole trader I love to see a bit of enterprise. I'm in New Malling.
On 10 Oct 2015 at 3:23pm Mark Ruddick wrote:
Thank you very much for the kind offer. Both Mel and I really appreciate it. It looks filling up tanks is definitely a consideration and we will keep your offer in mind. Depends if the RV will fit down the small New Malling roads! Thank you for your support and if you can't find anyone to clear those gutters give us a call in January when we arrive.
On 10 Oct 2015 at 3:49pm Mark Ruddick wrote:
Colonial Boy, Colonist
Thank you for the advice. We went up there this afternoon and it was really helpful. Thanks for the encouragement.
On 10 Oct 2015 at 3:55pm Mark Ruddick wrote:
Earl of Lewes, Tipex, No Pot Pourri
Thank you for your responses. No Por Pourri we realise that the cash is low but on the advice of some farmer friends of ours we hope we can make our value in labour and that the commercial water rates for farms would make our water usage almost undetectable in the grand scheme.
Earl of Lewes thank you for the back up. We are indeed paying road tax, income tax and national insurance we are not looking to play the system, it is just unfortunate that the system we are in does not accommodate this kind of low income living arrangement.
Tipex Thanks for the kind words
On 10 Oct 2015 at 3:57pm Mark Ruddick wrote:
Thank you for the response we popped in to the Phoenix site this morning and it was very positive
On 10 Oct 2015 at 4:01pm Mark Ruddick wrote:
Thank you for your responses any feedback is useful when gauging a place to live. I appreciate your views but when Mel and I have been renting rooms in Lewes for the past 4 years we have not been paying council tax. Instead we have been paying private land lords for the use of a single room and been left in a situation where after a seasons work we are no better off than when we started.
Like anyone else we want to feel like we own something and are working towards that while still continuing to pay road tax, income tax and national insurance. We hope that by taking on this adventure we will be better off for it and in a situation where we can join the mainstream without getting swept away by it.
On 10 Oct 2015 at 11:15pm Belladonna wrote:
Another idea - contact the Isfield Community Enterptise (ICE) - they have a field behind the Laughing Fish. They already rent to campers, and might be amenable to a longer term summer arrangement.
On 11 Oct 2015 at 12:16am Chap wrote:
The idea of council tax is that the cost of providing council services for all is spread around everyone who lives in that area. Private landlords pay their share via the property they own for the people living in their property. If you live in a van, you will use those council services, unless you spirit your rubbish away, float over the footpaths, feel you shouldn't contribute to school running, etc etc.
On 11 Oct 2015 at 10:04am Earl of Lewes wrote:
@Chap - For goodness sake! I think your objections suggest that you've got a bee in your bonnet about people who opt out of the rat race. Do you watch 'The Good Life', fuming with indignation at the behaviour of Tom and Barbara?
There are lots of people who live in the town and use many of its facilities without paying any council tax, for various reasons. This couple barely use the local facilities and are largely self-sufficient. They are simply trying to live within their means and work towards a better future and we should be saluting them. It's tough enough for the young these days and the best the older generation can do is give them all the support we can, not split hairs over trivial issues.
I'm sure that once this couple have established themselves, they will be making their full contribution.
On 11 Oct 2015 at 10:48am Smudge wrote:
Is Firle too far for you? Give the Estate office a ring. They might let you use somewhere in exchange for working p/t on the estate in some capacity.
On 11 Oct 2015 at 5:21pm Chap wrote:
I enjoyed The Good Life, which was fiction.
In real life, I pay lots of council tax towards schools whilst I don;t have kids; why should working folks opt out of doing the same just because they think they're smart by living in a van, thereby saving themselves lots of other expenditure too? if we all did it, where would the money come from to run all of our councils?
On 11 Oct 2015 at 7:03pm Lewes Nimby Councils wrote:
We would tax static RVs simples
On 11 Oct 2015 at 9:10pm Earl of Lewes wrote:
@Chap - How many people would want to live in a van? I just feel grateful that I was able to buy a house when they were vaguely affordable and I don't begrudge paying more tax than a struggling young couple.
On 12 Oct 2015 at 3:40pm Rod wrote:
Why don't you park it on the Nevill?
There seems to be an abundance of RV's, Trailers and Caravans being parked on the public highway without being moved for months on end.
Sounds perfect for your requirements, and its free!
On 13 Oct 2015 at 6:17am King of Sussex wrote:
Isn't that what the Muricans call a camper van?
On 14 Oct 2015 at 3:47pm belladonna wrote:
If you are not a permanent resident of the district - ie only vsiiting for a fewdays a week or a month, then you don't pay council tax. (Like a holiday maker) As I understand it this couple will only be temporarily resident. I guess they could negotiate some sort of contribution with the owner of the land if they felt so inclined.
On 16 Oct 2015 at 5:09am Annette Curtin-Twitcher wrote:
As the owner of one of the Nevill camper vans (parked in the drive, not on the road), I'd just like to point out to Rod that most people don't camp this late in the year and that's why the vans, motor homes and trailer tents are staying put.