Travellers on Front Lane Car Park

Residents may be aware that travellers have moved onto the Front Lane, train depot overflow car park, near the recycling bins.

The Council and Police have been fully aware of their presence and have undertaken a number of actions to ensure their removal from the site.

S61 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 gives power to the Police to serve notices. It only applies where there are six or more caravans or the occupiers have caused damage to the land or used threatening, abusive or insulting words/behaviour towards the occupier. It is up to the Police to use this power, but Council does not believe the relevant criteria to enable them to serve this notice has been met.

Where there is an incursion on Council owned land, consideration is given to the most effective way of bringing it to an end. In most cases travellers are persuaded to leave and agree a time for them to leave and removal is effective. Notice may also be served for them to leave under common law. Where there is failure to leave, Baliffs are appointed using common law powers. These powers are limited but it is the quickest way of achieving removal.

Officers have visited the site and assessed the welfare of the occupants. A common law notice to leave was served and bailiffs appointed. When the bailiffs tried to evict on Saturday the travellers refused to remove a minor from the caravan, preventing the removal of the caravans.

The Council has now moved to Section 77 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994. If the travellers ignore the S77 Notice, the Council can serve a summons to court. The Council would then be seeking an order from the Court under S78 to require the travellers to leave. This process will unfortunately take time.

In regard to penalty charge notice and rubbish clearance, this is unlikely to persuade the travellers to move. Consideration is also given to the risk council officers may be at when presenting PCNs.

Councillor Gillian Ford

  1. Suggest you lock the bar on the car park which will restrict movement of vans in and out. Relock daily as I am sure they will cut the locks as they must have done to access the car park. Suggest you serve penalty parking notices as you do not hesitate with local residents why do these A****holes get away with it.

  2. Funny how I was 12 minutes over in Aldi’s car park last week and received a £30 penalty notice. But I am a soft target of course, i, e. a law abiding citizen.
    Laws need to be changed to make sure these people can be moved on.

    • I agree Bob, it’s totally wrong that the rules and laws which govern us all are ignored by a few – and little is ever done about it!

  3. Where do they obtain water and dispose of sewage ?

  4. So if we look like we might physically harm your parking officers we can avoid a PCN with impunity?
    That is good to know going forward…

  5. Travellers are now on land behind the British Legion in St Mary’s Lane and they have also returned to the car park of the Pompadour pub in Harold Hill, after local residents cleared up the mess they recently left there.

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