RESIDENTS in Poole have said that more must be done to stop travellers from moving on to land close to their homes.
People who live in Christopher Crescent in Fleetsbridge say that they have had to put up with travellers for the past two weeks, on land next to Staples car park, on Fleets Lane.
Council officers from Borough of Poole have today gone to court to apply for an eviction order, which would give the owners of the three caravans and two motorhomes 24 hours to vacate the Fleetsbridge site.
However, Paula Holloway, who lives on Christopher Crescent, says that this has taken too long and once gone, preventative measures must be put in place by Borough of Poole to stop the caravans returning.
She said: “We have had no feedback from the council and we have had to put up with high-speed racing and somebody trying to plug their electrics into the system. If the travellers want to camp here, then they need to abide by some rules and regulations.
“Over at Baiter Park, they have had some Purbeck stone put in to stop the travellers from coming back, so once they leave here, we want the same by Christopher Crescent.
“We need that site secured straight away.”
Clive Watkins, who also lives on the road close to the travellers, said: “We can’t open the back gates for our home because one of the motorhomes is blocking it.
“It makes me feel like refusing to pay my council tax because we are being punished and yet we haven’t done anything wrong.
“Generally, residents are completely baffled as to why it has taken so long for the court order to be issued, but in the meantime nothing has been done to help the residents who live here.”
Temporary toilets and a skip have been provided on site, in line with new Borough of Poole regulations introduced to address environmental concerns.
‘Lot of work has been done to protect sites’ SPEAKING in response to this site, and a number of other small traveller encampments that have sprung up in Poole in recent weeks, Cllr Xena Dion – the borough’s cabinet portfolio holder for planning – has moved to reassure residents.
She said: “We recognise that the recent unauthorised encampments in Poole are a cause of public concern.
“A great deal of work with local residents’ groups has been undertaken to manage the situation effectively and meet the needs of our local communities while meeting government requirements to support the travellers’ way of life.”
Cllr Dion explained the council cannot simply move on unauthorised encampments to a permanent site, which could happen within 24 hours, as the borough does not have such a site within its boundaries.
On the present situation, Cllr Dion said: “Working with local communities through ward councillors, considerable work has just been completed to protect six identified open spaces that residents consider particularly sensitive, such as those that have ‘Fields in Trust’ status.
“These improvements have made it harder for unauthorised vehicles to access these sites but no site is completely secure.”
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