Aldershot News & Mail : 2020-07-08

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4 NEWS & MAIL WEDNESDAY, JULY 8, 2020 News Truckloads of litter left at park after traveller camp UNAUTHORIS­ED ENCAMPMENT Tons of rubbish was left at Heathersid­e Recreation Ground QUITS CAMBERLEY PARK By EMMA PENGELLY served on Thursday morning. Following a hearing at Guildford Magistrate­s’ Court, the council was granted the legal document. Once passed to group members they promptly left the site by around 9am, a councillor confirmed to SurreyLive. The order means they are not permitted to return for the next three months. Overflowin­g bins full of rubbish have been pictured at the site since the group’s departure. There were also piles of litter behind portable toilets that the council had temporaril­y supplied. Council officers carried out litter picking and tidying at the recreation ground throughout Thursday. Lib Dem councillor Kristian Wrenn, for the Heathersid­e ward, said: “They have promptly moved along and within @EmmaPengge­lly A COUNCILLOR says at least two truck loads of rubbish were removed from a recreation ground in Camberley after a large unauthoris­ed encampment left the site. The group, initially made up of 23 caravans and 31 associated vehicles, was handed a notice to vacate by Surrey Heath Borough Council on Friday afternoon June 26. It asked that the group leave Heathersid­e Recreation Ground by midday on Monday June 29. However, some failed to comply and on Wednesday July 1 the council said 21 caravans remained at the site. Due to this, a more severe Section 78 notice of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 was obtained and PHOTOS: GRAHAME LARTER around 10 minutes we had the clean-up crew moving onto the field. They have been replacing the wooden posts and taking off the [portable toilets].” On Friday, Surrey Heath Borough Commander DI Alick James said that in order for the group to gain access to the site “wooden bollards were damaged” and a man was assaulted, but “not seriously”. He added: “I walked around the site this morning and there was quite a lot of litter. I would at least expect two truck loads, but it could have been more. There were piles of litter in different stashes, including some green waste. “I am very grateful we have managed to get [the court order] through in a timely manner. It was important it happened before Saturday July 4, as some local businesses will be opening up. It is really important that they had the confidence to reopen their businesses. Surrey Heath council contractor­s carried out a clear-up costing £10,000 “This is a major problem that has been county-wide for so long. What we need to do now is work in finding a proper block for both Heathersid­e and others across the borough; not the wooden posts we had because that proved to be close to pointless. Travellers: The facts and figures protected against race discrimina­tion. The highest concentrat­ion of travellers in the country is in the south east of England. The charity is lobbying for more councils to comply with their legal duties to provide authorised travellers’ sites. The number doing so currently stands at just eight. “But more than that we need to push the county council to have transit sites. “It has been quite a long period of time where everyone has been in lockdown and we have only got one park in the area that people can use, so it couldn’t have happened at a worse time for us as a community.” Three quarters of the 300,000 people classed as travellers in the UK live in traditiona­l properties rather than caravans. The remaining quarter live a semi nomadic lifestyle, travelling to fairs and events, according to the charity Friends, Families and Travellers. Of that one quarter, just 3,000 occupy unauthoris­ed land at roadsides across the country at various times, the charity says. The two biggest ethnic groups within this community are Romany gypsies and Irish travellers. They are classed as an ethnic group under the Equality Act 2010, meaning they are legally PRINTED AND DISTRIBUTE­D BY PRESSREADE­R PressReade­ +1 604 278 4604 . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY ORIGINAL COPY COPYRIGHT AND PROTECTED BY APPLICABLE LAW

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