Council faces big bill after travellers leave mess on Titchfield site

27/6/2011 (NEWS)''The recreation park in Mill Lane, Titchfield which was being cleared on Monday 27th June 2011 after travellers were told to leave the site.''Pictured is: Rubbish left by the travellers.''Picture: Sarah Standing (112290-47)
27/6/2011 (NEWS)''The recreation park in Mill Lane, Titchfield which was being cleared on Monday 27th June 2011 after travellers were told to leave the site.''Pictured is: Rubbish left by the travellers.''Picture: Sarah Standing (112290-47)

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THE bill to evict and clean up the mess left by a group of travellers will run into thousands of pounds, a council leader has said.

Bags of rubbish and human excrement were found at the site in Mill Lane, Titchfield, after the encampment of 32 caravans was handed an eviction notice.

112207-1251 FAREHAM TRAVELLERS (CB) MRW 20/6/2011 ''Hampshire police officers and Fareham Borough Council officials on the site at the bottom of Titchfield Hill on the corner of Mill Lane and Southampton Road where travellers have become encamped'''Picture: Malcolm Wells (112207-1251)

112207-1251 FAREHAM TRAVELLERS (CB) MRW 20/6/2011 ''Hampshire police officers and Fareham Borough Council officials on the site at the bottom of Titchfield Hill on the corner of Mill Lane and Southampton Road where travellers have become encamped'''Picture: Malcolm Wells (112207-1251)

While the exact cost has not yet been worked out, Fareham council leader, Sean Woodward predicted taxpayers would have to fork out thousands.

As reported yesterday, Cllr Woodward has written to the prime minister asking for tougher laws against travellers.

He said: ‘(The mess) is not as bad as I thought it would be from the sheer number of caravans but we did move in very quickly with skips and black bin bags. It is extremely disruptive. That’s why I have written to the prime minister. People can’t go about their normal business.

‘The balance of action seems to be far too much in the favour of the people who are causing the trouble.’

The travellers moved onto the site last week, and Fareham council immediately went to court to get an eviction notice.

The group left on Friday but a short time later pitched up at Burridge Recreation ground in Burridge, causing a cricket match to be cancelled and putting plans for a wedding on Saturday in jeopardy.

The couple had hired the village hall and were using the field as part of their wedding. They had to find another venue as a back-up plan. Fortunately, the travellers moved on and left the site on Friday evening.

Richard Harris, 64, from nearby Mill Street, said: ‘I haven’t got a problem with travellers per se but I am totally against the fact that they leave their rubbish behind. That’s pretty disgusting. When they do things like that then we do get upset.’

One resident from Mill Lane, who wanted to remain anonymous, added: ‘I can’t bear the fact that all that rubbish was left in a recreation ground where young children the day before were playing.

‘The last time they were there was about seven years ago. We don’t like the rubbish.

‘If they left the site how they found it perhaps people wouldn’t be so upset about it.’

The travellers had also stopped at Parkway in Whiteley and on St Margaret’s Way Lane in Titchfield.