‘No magic answer over travellers’

Travellers who arrived at Jubilee Woods in June later moved on to Gypsy Road Playing Fields
Travellers who arrived at Jubilee Woods in June later moved on to Gypsy Road Playing Fields

There is “only so much we can do” says East Riding of Yorkshire Council after £28,000 bollards failed to keep travellers off a site in Bridlington for a second year.

The council’s Paul Abbott says he sympathises with residents’ frustration over the annual influx of travellers on Jubilee Woods.

But the public protection manager explained “the council has no magic answer” in deterring the yearly arrival.

He said: “We can’t turn it into Fort Knox, it would not look very good and we need access for cutting the grass.”

Having removed a bollard used by maintenance staff to access the site, more than a dozen travellers’ caravans arrived at Jubilee Woods on June 13.

And it cost more than £100 this year to clean up the mess left behind.

The group later moved on to the former Sports Centre’s playing field, near Bessingby Hill.

Residents even claim abuse was hurled at them as they walked through the site near Morrisons.

Mr Abbott added: “Firstly we have to make sure that they have no reason that the council should not take action against them.

“For example, if someone was about to give birth.

“Normally, we don’t find anything.”

Once the initial assessment is carried out, the council can issue travellers with a notice to leave. If they fail to do so, then they can be taken to court.

But some abandon their site before they are due in court. Mr Abbott said they have “a reasonable understanding” of the legal process.

“When you say that they do things that no-one else is allowed to get away with - the fact is no-one else does it,” he added.

It comes after South Ward councillor, Margaret Chadwick, said the law should be changed so travellers can be moved on more easily.