Injunction sees travellers get ban from 3 more parks in city
MOVE MEANS EIGHT BEAUTY SPOTS NOW HAVE LEGAL PROTECTION
BIRMINGHAM City council chiefs have secured a High Court injunction banning traveller camps from three more city parks.
Extra protection is now in place at Sarehole Mill and Chinnbrook Recreation Ground, in Hall Green, and the Dell off Manningford Road, Druids Heath.
The move means eight parks now have legal protection that makes it easier for police and council officials to get rid of travellers who set up camp.
The other five are Selly Oak Park, Selly Park Recreational Ground, Hazelwell Park in Stirchley, Perry Park and Alexander Stadium in Perry Barr and Swanshurst Park in Kings Heath.
Coun Lou Robson, who represents Hall Green North, welcomed the news.
“We have experienced repeated problems at parks across the city,” she said.
“This gives the council and police more power to act quickly to move on travellers. “It’s very good news for local communities who have been pressing for action for some time.”
Hundreds of people signed a petition calling for action to thwart travellers from setting up base at the beauty spots.
Sarehole Mill, famed for its links to JRR Tolkein, writer of The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings, was hit by a series of unauthorised camps at Shire Country Park in the summer.
At one point dozens of caravans were camped on the fields next to the historic water mill, triggering complaints of noise, nuisance and antisocial behaviour. In July tragedy struck at one of the camps when a 19- month- old toddler was hit by a van and killed.
A spokesman said: “High Court injunctions are a tool available to us to prevent anti- social behaviour and flytipping associated with unauthorised encampments.
“We work closely with West Midlands Police on this matter and last year we successfully gained two High Court injunctions covering five city parks – banning anyone from setting up illegal camps until July 2019.”
Breaches of the orders can result in arrests, charges for contempt of court, fines, assets seized and even imprisonment.
A travellers’ camp at Sarehole Mill