A CONVOY of travellers turned away from a Poole car park by police later turned up at Turlin Moor recreation ground.
Around 15 large caravans towed by trucks and cars drove into the B&Q car park at Fleetsbridge at around 10am yesterday but were immediately directed out by officers in vans and cars.
By the time they gathered at Turlin Moor a couple of hours later, numbers had swelled to around 30 vans.
The occupants helped each other push some of the vans on to the recreation ground as they struggled, wheels spinning, to tow them up a small verge on wet grass.
Tempers frayed as more vans, many large and luxurious, queued to get on to the site.
As they waited, their children played football on a hard pitch at the site.
Residents from the nearby Turlin Moor estate watched across the recreation ground as the numbers of travellers grew and the grass was churned up by vehicles.
On a small piece of land near B&Q, three caravans occupied by travellers had already taken up residence the previous day behind bushes alongside the car park.
It is believed the others had been told about the site and may have been attempting to set up an illegal encampment when intercepted by police and sent away.
When approached by the Daily Echo, a woman in one of the three caravans said: “I don’t want you here taking any pictures – we have got children here and it’s an invasion of our privacy.”
Small children holding bottles peered out of one caravan as the woman told the Echo: “You’ve got no right to take any pictures of us.”
It is understood that an eviction notice has been served on the three vans and the occupants have been told they have to leave within a week.
A spokeswoman for Dorset Police said a patrol vehicle had been in the vicinity of Fleetsbridge during the morning and had stumbled across the convoy of travellers. She said police were not escorting the vehicles.