Sutton braced for illegal traveller camps over the summer

Travellers on Rose Hill Park last year

Travellers on Rose Hill Park last year

First published in News
Last updated
Sutton Guardian: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

The borough is bracing itself for an expected surge in illegal traveller incursions in the coming weeks.

Annually, the number of illegal traveller camps set up in Sutton increases during the summer months with a spike around events including this weekend's Epsom Derby.

However, this year Sutton Council has said it is making preparations for potential incursions and is continuing with a programme if plans to prevent people bringing caravans on to the borough's green spaces.

A Sutton Council spokesman said: "The borough does regularly see an increase in the numbers of travellers over the summer months; however this is in large part due to work opportunities rather than specific events such as the Epsom Downs horse racing this weekend.

"We have worked closely with other local authorities and key partners to put together a package of short-terms and long-term measures to address the issue of illegal gypsy and traveller encampments in the borough.

Sutton Guardian: Travellers leave Rose Hill Park leaving mountains of rubbish

Rubbish left on Rose Hill Park last year

"We continue to carry out improvements to parks, highways and car parks that will make them more resistant to illegal encampments."

Last summer and autumn the borough was plagued with illegal traveller encampments prompting record numbers of complaints to the council and costs in excess of £20,000 in legal services and bailiffs to have them removed. Removing travellers cost the council just over £4,000 the previous year.

Rose Hill park was particularly badly hit and in October a group of travellers left mountains of rubbish that prompted a council investigation.

Earlier that month tonnes of rubbish including human excrement was left in Roundshaw Park.

Sutton Council said it has dealt with 13 illegal traveller encampments so far this year.

It has also installed preventative measures including raised bunds around the edges of parks and secure gates, although these measures have been bypassed by travellers in the past.

Sutton Guardian: Human excrement on a slide in Roundshaw Park

Human excrement was left on a slide in Roundshaw

 

Comments (7)

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8:36pm Thu 5 Jun 14

GreenBrown says...

When this all starts up again I do hope there won't be any complaints about it. The people of Sutton voted back in a Libdem council and we already know how ineffective they are at dealing with this issue. If you voted for any party other than Ukip or you didn't vote then you have no right to complain. These camps and these people are what you get with the status quo. They are protected by Eu minority laws and there is nothing anyone can do about it.
When this all starts up again I do hope there won't be any complaints about it. The people of Sutton voted back in a Libdem council and we already know how ineffective they are at dealing with this issue. If you voted for any party other than Ukip or you didn't vote then you have no right to complain. These camps and these people are what you get with the status quo. They are protected by Eu minority laws and there is nothing anyone can do about it. GreenBrown
  • Score: 11

8:08am Fri 6 Jun 14

adrianshort says...

It's got nothing to do with the EU. Simple trespass was a civil not criminal matter before the UK joined the EU and it'll remain so even if the UK leaves.
It's got nothing to do with the EU. Simple trespass was a civil not criminal matter before the UK joined the EU and it'll remain so even if the UK leaves. adrianshort
  • Score: -6

11:43pm Fri 6 Jun 14

GreenBrown says...

"It's got nothing to do with the EU"

Everything is to do with the EU, but I doubt you could understand that. Maybe you could explain why the number of illegal camps has grown massively over the last 10 years or so. Completely unrelated, but I think the minority laws that protect these people came into effect around ten years ago.
"It's got nothing to do with the EU" Everything is to do with the EU, but I doubt you could understand that. Maybe you could explain why the number of illegal camps has grown massively over the last 10 years or so. Completely unrelated, but I think the minority laws that protect these people came into effect around ten years ago. GreenBrown
  • Score: 1

4:10am Mon 9 Jun 14

Jonny English says...

Introduce a law that requires a special licence to tow a caravan/drive a motor home similar to a digi card currently used to drive a vehicle with a tachometer. Any caravan/motorhome used without a licence is immediately impounded. Illegal parking of a caravan can result in the immediate suspension of licence rendering the caravan to be impounded. Problem solved.
Introduce a law that requires a special licence to tow a caravan/drive a motor home similar to a digi card currently used to drive a vehicle with a tachometer. Any caravan/motorhome used without a licence is immediately impounded. Illegal parking of a caravan can result in the immediate suspension of licence rendering the caravan to be impounded. Problem solved. Jonny English
  • Score: 8

3:55pm Mon 9 Jun 14

rivacre says...

Nice picture of the human excrement on the slide. Are you sure it wasn't melted chocolate?
Nice picture of the human excrement on the slide. Are you sure it wasn't melted chocolate? rivacre
  • Score: 0

9:38pm Tue 10 Jun 14

Monstermunch17 says...

"It's got nothing to do with the EU"
Everything is to do with the EU

Brilliant. That should be your epitaph, Greenbrown.

In fairness, these 'minority laws' you talk about, are not an EU invention.

Societies have been evolving over centuries, all over the world, and at various points over the last couple of centuries, governments everywhere have written into law rules outlawing the persecution of minorities, or the perceived 'enemies within' - whether that meant witches, jews, blacks , irish, the gay community, etc, etc .

It's not the case that we can just leave the EU, and then start beating up anyone in our street who doesn't look like us, much as you may wish that were so.
"It's got nothing to do with the EU" Everything is to do with the EU Brilliant. That should be your epitaph, Greenbrown. In fairness, these 'minority laws' you talk about, are not an EU invention. Societies have been evolving over centuries, all over the world, and at various points over the last couple of centuries, governments everywhere have written into law rules outlawing the persecution of minorities, or the perceived 'enemies within' - whether that meant witches, jews, blacks , irish, the gay community, etc, etc . It's not the case that we can just leave the EU, and then start beating up anyone in our street who doesn't look like us, much as you may wish that were so. Monstermunch17
  • Score: 1

10:27pm Tue 10 Jun 14

LisaSutton says...

They didn't do the changes in time... currently 8 caravans on the other side of the road.
They didn't do the changes in time... currently 8 caravans on the other side of the road. LisaSutton
  • Score: 0

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