‘Permitting more permanent sites will have no impact’

UNWELCOME A recent travellers' camp
UNWELCOME A recent travellers' camp

Shoplifter in court for taking steak from city store

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I have been appalled to hear that Fareham Borough Council believe that by granting more static sites to travellers, that it would have any impact on the problem.

Reading an article in The News, I was shocked to read comments from my ward councillor Jim Forrest, who I know is a good man.

He said that granting a few more pitches on two small traveller sites could alleviate our annual traveller problem.

He advised us to read the plans before submitting our views to a public consultation. I would like to know how this will stop a recurrence of the recent invasions and trespass of private and council land?

In the past month we’ve seen these sites pop up all over the borough, causing mess when they leave and costing the tax payer, or private land owner, money to clear up. This new policy, of allowing a few more permanent sites, will have no impact on this type of traveller.

The large groups of travellers, who come from outside the area, will be unlikely to know about this new policy.

Secondly, I believe that the sites proposed for the sites were land grabs on our strategic gap followed by a bank holiday operation to put down hard standing and move caravans on.

This is something no other person could get away with.

Why do travellers seem to have special rights over the rest of us? I think it’s time we spoke up.

Our other ward councillor Kay Mandry showed some conviction when she stood up for residents who had signed a petition against the policy.

If the council is in favour of permitting settled traveller families to acquire our countryside in this way, we at least deserve an explanation why.