Spoilt for choice

Spoilt for choice

John, from Harrogate, is a company director working in the property sector (“though semi-retired now”), whose knowledge of the housing and property development business may explain why he took his time investing in HPB. “Whether you’re talking residential, commercial or holiday accommodation, there are things to look out for, things to be aware of,” he says. “I knew about HPB for a while, but I wanted to be sure that the offering was right for my wife, Margaret, and me – in terms of the range of holiday properties available; but also that the company was run along professional lines by people who knew what they were doing. We went to Rosedale, the Bond’s North York Moors home, a few times as guests of other Bondholders, and loved it – and extrapolated (correctly, as it turned out) that the other sites would be of a similar standard. So that ticked that box. But also it was an opportunity to observe how HPB was run. Once I was comfortable with that side of it as well, I had no hesitation in investing.”

John’s travels have taken him to most of HPB’s UK locations. Lodge Yard, the Bond’s Yorkshire Dales home, merits a mention; as do Barnham Broom, in Norfolk; St Brides Castle, in Pembrokeshire; Sibton Park, in Kent; Upper Norton, in Shropshire; and Tigh Mor Trossachs, HPB’s grand former hotel in Perthshire – twice visited, and something of a favourite. Buckland Court, in the heart of the Cotswolds, remains on the wishlist; and there are hopes of a trip to Langton House, in Dorset’s Purbeck hills, next spring. “The locations are diverse, as you’d expect,” says John, “but all are equally lovely in different ways. I like walking - though I can no longer manage the sort of hikes I used to do, sadly – and all the sites are in beautiful walking country. I’m keen on gardening, too - and HPB's homes are surrounded by spectacular gardens. I suppose you could say I’m a fan of the great outdoors – and what’s outside HPB’s doors is great indeed.”

But this recent break saw John and some of his family in Portugal, where this picture was taken. Holidaying are John’s son David, grandson Eddie, granddaughter, Ella, John, and daughter-in-law Sue.

So, how was it? “Fabulous!” says John. “Warm - as you would expect; there’s not much chance of frostbite in the Algarve in July. And the site is beautiful: the properties are easy on the eye anyway, and the bougainvillea everywhere softens the contours even further. But I can really see the benefits of a shared site, there – the swimming pools, the shops, the restaurant, the cafe… HPB has – what –
50-plus units at Rocha Brava; but the facilities are such that Bondholders really are spoilt for choice.”

Son David echoes this view, adding:

“The activities and excursions on offer are fantastic. We went on a boat trip to the Benagil Sea Cave – just magical. And had we wanted to we could have planned an excursion for every day of the holiday, and still had some left over. But we were happy mostly to chill out on site.”

So is John now a convert to HPB’s overseas portfolio? “I wouldn’t say that exactly,” he avers. “I love the UK, and I love the Bond’s British sites. I do winter abroad, but I go long-haul – Australia one year, Barbados the next. But Rocha Brava was a revelation to us all – and I’m sure David and family, and my other two sons, will make good use of Dad’s Bond to explore some more of Europe’s loveliest locations.”

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