Travellers cost council £1,500, left rubbish strewn across Havant field and engaged in anti-social behaviour and public order incidents before leaving

TRAVELLERS who returned to a field in Bedhampton where they pitched up last year left rubbish strewn across a field, were involved in anti-social behaviour and public order incidents and cost the council £1,500.

Five caravans and two cars arrived at Havant Rugby Club next to Hook’s Lane on Sunday May 9 leaving locals concerned about the state of the land after rubbish was left dumped across the area last year.

The nomads have since fled the field after Havant Borough Council began proceedings to evict them.

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Travellers arrived at Havant Rugby Club on Sunday

But locals were unimpressed with the visit after last year’s arrival, with rubbish again left on the field after they had gone. ‘I’m a bit disappointed with the council as the travellers were here last year and nothing was done to stop them coming here again,’ one resident said.

‘Last time they also left rubbish everywhere including dirty nappies and grass patches were left bald and it was the same this time.

‘There were bonfires done again, vans driving across the field all times of day and suspicious behaviour when they were using a van to look around the border of the rugby club. There was a van that visited which had been out of tax since November and the constant drone of generators was annoying.

‘I would like to know if the council are going to anything to prevent further returns. A lot of regular dog walkers avoided the area.’

A spokeswoman for the council said: ‘No structural damage was performed at this site. Each unlawful encampment costs in the region of £1,500 which includes officer time, court costs and clearance.’

Councillor Narinder Bains, deputy leader of Havant Borough Council and community safety boss, said: ‘Council officers took robust enforcement action and served a court order within days. We will look at future target hardening at hotspot sites however acknowledge that locks and barriers don’t always deter incursions.’

A Hampshire police spokeswoman said: ‘We did receive a couple of low level anti-social behaviour reports and a low-level public order report at the location.

‘Officers conducted regular patrols in the area and engaged with the occupants, providing words of advice where necessary.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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