Saturday, 9 May 2009

The annual plague

I have been round the Roman camp again this afternoon, the first time since last weekend, and I see that the travellers are still camped in the Wild Park. Every summer we suffer from travellers' illegal camps in parks and on fields in and around Brighton. If the Council acts quickly enough, they can be moved on easily, but this does need action within 24 hours of their arrival. Naturally, they usually set up camp late on a Friday afternoon, so nothing can be done until Monday at the earliest. Then it needs a court order to move the travellers, and that usually takes three to four weeks. Ridiculous!

What really annoys most Brighton residents is that:
a) dole money is delivered to the camps by taxi;
b) most people are hesitant (or downright afraid) to walk past one of the camps because of the out-of-control dogs;
c) the men start going round the houses with 'a bit of left-over asphalt if you would like your drive resurfaced' or offering to fix that 'dodgy' slate and then 'finding' other work that needs doing immediately. "Don't have the cash to pay my exhorbitant demand? Mever mind, I'll come to the cash point with you."
d) it costs a small fortune to clear the site of rubbish after they have finally been persuaded to move on.

And if this seems like a moan, IT IS!


Uncle Skip, said...

This sounds like it has been a continuing, if intermittent, situation. Doesn't the Council have the capacity to anticipate it and thereby prevent the occurrence?

Brighton Pensioner said...

Part of the trouble is that I can think immediately of 15 sites that are used, and I've probably overlooked some. Granted, steps have been taken to make it almost impossible to get caravans into a few of those sites, but it just isn't possible to do that with all of them. It doesn't help that some of the Council officials are sympathetic to the travellers!

Brighton Pensioner said...

The site in the picture is one of those that couldn't be blocked off because vehicular access is needed for/by authorised users.

Uncle Skip, said...

"...some of the Council officials are sympathetic to the travellers..."Obviously they've never been inconvenienced by the antics of the travellers.
It seems that the simple answer would be to declare them unauthorized users.