Travellers set up camp at beauty spot
PLANS to stop travellers setting up camp at a popular beauty spot have been scuppered – after they turned up before blockades could be put in place.
For the fourth time in six months travellers have camped at the bottom of Ferry Hill, just off the A47 at Castor, next to the northern entrance to Ferry Meadows country park.
Their arrival has provoked anger among local residents.
Peterborough City Council, the Highways Agency, Castor Parish Council and ward councillors had been looking at plans to put concrete bollards at the site to prevent the caravans getting access, following their last visit at the end of April.
Council workers had already put some mounds of soil down in an initial attempt to thwart the convoy.
Concrete posts were due to be put in this week.
But the travellers arrived on Monday night, before work could be done.
John Holdich, ward councillor for Glinton and Wittering, which includes Castor, said: “I understand there were plans to do some work to stop up the road this week but it looks like they have beaten us to it.
“We were intending to put some concrete blocks down but will have to wait now. There was soil down but they have ridden completely over it.
“I walked down there to the site, as they are parked on the road near the car park and it is not nice to walk through it.”
Peterborough City Council had previously looked into height and weight barriers for the site, but the idea was vetoed by the Highways Agency because it could stop legitimate vehicles getting access.
Castor Parish Councillor William Baxter said he thought the soil plan had been rather optimistic.
However, he said the parish coun- cil had worked positively with the city council to try to stop the travellers gaining access.
Mr Baxter said: “You have to remember this is a very busy road which is used by a lot of traffic and the city council are working with highways and are doing what they can with limited resources.
“The road is busy as the users include fishermen, dog walkers and-joggers – and on top of that there is a huge amount of commuters who use the route to cycle to work.
“When I walked down there today the visitor’s dogs were tethered and there were no children about but I know both motorists and cyclists worry that loose dogs and children playing near the caravans can make it hazardous and unsafe.
“We have a tenant who grazes cattle down there and we had two worried residents call us when they saw two cows choking on plastic bags left behind last time.
“Fortunately they were ok but the litter left behind is an issue.”
The city council confirmed they have given an eviction notice to the travellers, who must leave by Friday.
ILLEGAL CAMP: Travellers caravans on the old A47 which leads to Milton Ferry Bridge.