TV’s gypsy millionaire has given his solution for how to solve the country’s affordable housing crisis following his acquisiiton of a park homes estate in West Berkshire.

Alfie Best Senior is the owner of Wyldecrest Parks and appeared on ITV’s ‘Undercover Big Boss’ in August this year.

His son, Alfie Best Junior, appeared on the viral Channel 4 video ‘Rich Kids Go Shopping’ when he was 17 years old, and more recently appeared on ITVBe’s reality TV series ‘Absolutely Ascot’.

Mr Best Snr recently acquired Pinelands Residential Park in Padworth Common for £1.6 million, and will invest £500,000 into it.

He believes park homes are the answer to the nation’s affordable housing crisis.

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But what are park homes? Park homes are one-storey prefabricated homes that can be transported on a chassis, effectively making them mobile.

Typically, they have two double bedrooms, but they can go up to four bedrooms, have walk-in wardrobes and sport the usual home facilities like bathrooms and kitchens.

The Local Democracy Reporting Service spoke with Mr Best Snr about the acquisition and how park homes could be the answer to the nation’s affordable housing problem.

Mr Best Snr said: “We acquired the park from a family interest who’ve owned it for a lifetime, but it’s lacked investment over the years.

“We will invest £500,000 into new drains, electricity supply, tarmac, five new homes and bringing the site up to 21st Century standards.

“If you categorically compare them,  park homes are the solution to the affordable housing problem.

“Compared with a like-for-like bungalow, park homes are at least 50-75 per cent less."

Reading Chronicle: Alfie Best Senior, the chairman of Wyldecrest Parks. Credit: Wyldecrest ParksAlfie Best Senior, the chairman of Wyldecrest Parks. Credit: Wyldecrest Parks

Mr Best Snr continued: “One of the most important reasons why they are the solution is that they stay affordable.

“There are no land registry fees, no solicitors fees, they are in council tax band A which is the cheapest band, and on top of that electricity is 25 per cent cheaper.

“You can live the life you’ve never lived in a Park Home, keep your money and live in a nice community.

“Ask yourself, would you prefer a brand new park home for £80,000, where you get the benefit of living in like minded community of other people, or living in a flat and pay three times as much?”

Some park homes estates are sophisticated, with the largest Wyldecrest Park having a shop, a hairdressers and even a swimming pool, with a doctor’s surgery on the way.

Pinelands, which Mr Best Snr recently acquired, currently has a total of 40 homes and about 80 residents.

But do park homes have longevity? Mr Best Snr answered: “They’ll last forever if you look after and maintain them, just like a regular house.”

Reading Chronicle: The park homes at Pinelands Residential Park in Padworth Common. Credit: Wyldecrest ParksThe park homes at Pinelands Residential Park in Padworth Common. Credit: Wyldecrest Parks

It’s fair to say that Mr Best Snr is a rich man, with a net worth of £341 million, which begs the question of whether he lives in a park home himself.

He answered: “I do have a house in Surrey and I’ve got a flat in Knightsbridge, but I will end up back in a park home. I’m a big advocate of them.

“I’m a gypsy. I was born in a caravan, this is second nature to me. I’ve found my passion in park homes.

“A man should never look for his passion in something he doesn’t understand, but I’ve lived in caravans all my life and I believe park homes will become mainstream.”

Reading Chronicle: One of the roads at the Pinelands Residential Park in Padworth Common. Credit: Wyldecrest ParksOne of the roads at the Pinelands Residential Park in Padworth Common. Credit: Wyldecrest Parks

But what can we make of Mr Best Snr’s ‘solution’?

The idea of downsizing and living a humble lifestyle is likely appealing to semi-retired and retired people, particularly those who are used to holidaying in the UK.

But for younger people who are seeking affordable homes on the housing market, the culture of buying a humble but modern first home in a town or city with a partner is much more prevalent.

Giving Mr Best Snr the last word, he said: “Park homes do carry a lot of stigma, but we’re breaking that stigma, this can be the way to for people in the future.”

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Mr Best Snr also owns Cranbourne Hall Residential Park in Bracknell Forest, located next to the derelict Squirrels pub which has recently become blighted with anti-social behaviour.

Other park home estates in Berkshire include Warfield Park and The High Pines in Maiden’s Green, both in Bracknell Forest, and Ravenswing Park near Aldermaston in West Berkshire.