One of Britain’s richest men, nicknamed “Bob the billionaire bungalow builder”, is being sued for more than £32 million over unpaid debts

One of Britain’s richest men, nicknamed “Bob the billionaire bungalow builder”, is being sued for over £32 million in unpaid debts.

46-year-old tycoon Robert Bull built his fortune by turning static caravan parks into bungalow villages.

But he became embroiled in a legal battle after he allegedly failed to hand over money in a deal with holiday park boss Tony Barney.

Earlier this year, Mr Bull was ranked 88th on the UK Rich List, with his net worth estimated at almost £2bn.

He told how he fought his way out of bankruptcy in 2016, owing £3.5 million to his creditors and falling into a “severe depression” which left him unable to work for three months.

And now Mr Barney, 59, claims Mr Bull owes two of his caravan companies – Baslow Parks and Baslow Holdings Developments, based in Nottingham – a whopping £32,290,532.

46-year-old tycoon Robert Bull (pictured), Royale's chief executive officer, built his fortune by turning static caravan parks into bungalow villages

46-year-old tycoon Robert Bull (pictured), Royale’s chief executive officer, built his fortune by turning static caravan parks into bungalow villages

Tony Barney (pictured), 59, claims Mr Bull's Time GB Group owes two of his caravan companies a whopping £32million

Tony Barney (pictured), 59, claims Mr Bull’s Time GB Group owes two of his caravan companies a whopping £32million

Mr Barney claims Mr Bull owes money to two of his parks - Baslow Parks and Baslow Holdings Developments, based in Nottingham. Pictured is one of his parks on the Isle of Wight, called Medina Park

Mr Barney claims Mr Bull owes money to two of his parks – Baslow Parks and Baslow Holdings Developments, based in Nottingham. Pictured is one of his parks on the Isle of Wight, called Medina Park

Mr Bull said he turned his fortunes around after spotting a gaping hole in the property market which led to him building bungalow villages for people looking to sell their homes and downsize. His company, which employs 2,000 people, is now said to be worth £4 billion.

He now owns a £4million collection of 12 supercars and lives in a £10million mansion in Southampton with 30-year-old Norwegian fiancée Sara Nilsen.

However, court documents show that a number of bankruptcy filings have been filed against companies run by Mr. Bull in recent months.

One of his companies, Time GB Group, appoints administrators. The court hearing is scheduled for September 29th.

And the new legal claim of fellow entrepreneur Barney, who owns a number of residential and lodge parks from Yorkshire to Norfolk, is said to be worth £125 million.

He says his two companies signed a “deed of settlement and release” in March this year in which Mr Bull agreed to make a series of payments from April 14.

But Mr Bull failed to make the first payment of £1.4 million that day, court documents show.

Mr Bull now owns a £4million collection of 12 supercars and lives in a £10million mansion in Southampton with Norwegian fiancée Sara Nilsen, 30 (pictured together).

Mr Bull now owns a £4million collection of 12 supercars and lives in a £10million mansion in Southampton with Norwegian fiancée Sara Nilsen, 30 (pictured together).

Earlier this year, Mr Bull, 46, (pictured with his fiancée Ms Nilsen in an Instagram post) landed at number 88 on the UK Rich List, with his net worth estimated at almost £2bn

Earlier this year, Mr Bull, 46, (pictured with his fiancée Ms Nilsen in an Instagram post) landed at number 88 on the UK Rich List, with his net worth estimated at almost £2bn

The Supreme Court statement of claim states that the total amount owed by Mr Bull, £32,290,532, became due when the payment was not made.

Mr Barney is also seeking interest of £5,308.03 per day.

Mr Bull denies the claim and says Mr Barney breached their agreement by failing to keep its terms confidential.

Mr Bull claims that Mr Barney made “a clear and unequivocal promise” that the payment deed would not be enforced while Time GB Group went into administration.

He claims that Mr. Barney wrote to him in an August 23 email: “I won’t be horrible or evil, I’ll still try to help you!”

“I have a clear conscience and will always help everyone if I can.”

The rows are the latest twist in the colorful life of Mr Bull, who has said he was “born with a platinum and diamond spoon in his mouth” – thanks to the success of the caravan park business set up by his grandfather.

Twice-married father-of-two Mr Bull (pictured with his new fiancée Ms Nilsen) told how he pulled himself out of the depths of despair

Twice-married father-of-two Mr Bull (pictured with his new fiancée Ms Nilsen) told how he pulled himself out of the depths of despair

He met Ms Nilsen (pictured) in a bar in Mayfair in 2019 and the couple now share his luxury home, which has a pool, gym and sauna, as well as its own three-lane bowling alley

He met Ms Nilsen (pictured) in a bar in Mayfair in 2019 and the couple now share his luxury home, which has a pool, gym and sauna, as well as its own three-lane bowling alley

Mr Bull and Ms Nilsen also share a £1million home together in Ms Nilsen's hometown in Norway

Mr Bull and Ms Nilsen also share a £1million home together in Ms Nilsen’s hometown in Norway

He said, “My three sisters and I were raised to have everything we could want.”

His father continued the success of the family business until he “lost everything in the banking crisis of the 1990s.”

Mr Bull rebuilt the empire and founded Britain’s second largest caravan group.

However, the company ran into difficulties in 2016 and he was declared bankrupt.

Mr Bull told how seven years ago things got so bad that he couldn’t afford the price of a takeaway for his children.

In an interview earlier this year, he said: “I inserted my card and it didn’t work.” The next card didn’t work either.

“I was pushing my youngest, Jack, in the stroller. I put my food back and said to my son Bobby, “Do you have any money?”

“I had to borrow the price of a KFC from my 12-year-old so my kids could have something to eat.”

Speaking about the legal battle, Ms Nilsen said of her fiancé (pictured):

Speaking about the legal battle, Ms Nilsen said of her fiancé (pictured): “I’m so proud of him.” He’s very worried about the business.

“I still get emotional about it. The woman in the bank cut my cards open in front of me. I felt like a piece of shit. That was my worst day and I hated it.’

Twice-married father-of-two Mr Bull told how he rose from the depths of despair and made a second fortune building bungalow complexes.

He met Ms Nilsen in a bar in Mayfair in 2019 and the couple now share his luxury home, which has a pool, gym and sauna, as well as its own three-lane bowling alley.

The property has six double garages that house his car collection, including five Rolls Royces, two Lamborghinis and a Ferrari GTS.

As a reminder, Mr Bull keeps a caravan in a corner of the property’s three-acre garden him, where it all began.

The couple also share a £1million home in Ms Nilsen’s hometown in Norway.

Ms Nilsen said: “I am so proud of him.” He is very worried about the business.

“I said to him, ‘What’s the worst that can happen? You lose everything. You’ll still have me, we’ll start again.”‘

Emma Colton

Janice Dean is a WSTPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Janice Dean joined WSTPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: janicedean@wstpost.com.

Related Articles

Back to top button