South Links Park in Montrose has seen an exodus since a council letter demanding an extra £948 a year was presented to caravan owners.
The regular South Links customers say they have been dismayed at the Angus Council stance and are voting with their feet.
The once busy touring area of the local authority-run park is now nearly empty with only a handful of caravans left.
One resident, speaking from her caravan, said: “The pensioners have all gone, they can’t afford another £1000 on top of their yearly fees. Its such a shame but the holiday feel has gone. None of us have extra cash to pay for this.”
The council have announced they will close the park in February to ensure the caravan owners are not staying there all year round and have another address where they pay their council tax.
A spokesperson said: “Previous fees were paid to the former operator and were not received by the council. As the current operator, we now have a duty to try to recover, so far as possible, expenditure incurred through the safe running of the site. If they choose to move on, then that is clearly a decision for them. The fees relate to those who remain on site.”
The resident added: “We expected that. February is a cold month to be here anyway. The others all want to come back in March as soon as the new season starts.”
“To store their caravans elsewhere from now until March costs only £100 or so which is a lot less than the council are asking for.
“Our only worry is that the park is seen as under used and making a loss, and will then be closed down.”
The Spokesperson said: “Angus Council is keen for as many caravan owners to continue to locate their vans at the South Links Park. There are no plans to close the site.”
David May, Lib Dem Councillor, said: “I think the residents were led to believe they could stay for the whole year by WOW leisure but the council would never have allowed residents to stay for the full year. Unfortunately, unless they have something on paper, they have no legal standing. There was very little in the way of paperwork while Wow were operating the park.”