Number of rough sleepers going up

Outreach workers Neil Vass and Lucie Carroll at an area used by rough sleepers near Bridlington.
Outreach workers Neil Vass and Lucie Carroll at an area used by rough sleepers near Bridlington.

Volunteers say they have seen a rise in the number of rough sleepers in Bridlington in the past couple of weeks.

Teams working with homeless people have been made aware of four new cases in the last fortnight, and say there may be others they have not discovered yet.

Lucie checks on people who are known to be living in tents near Bridlington

Lucie checks on people who are known to be living in tents near Bridlington

Lucie Carroll is an outreach coordinator for Emmaus, an organisation which works with homeless people across Hull and the East Riding.

She was in Bridlington on Tuesday, meeting those who were out on the streets in torrential rain.

“It’s quite bad at the minute. Bridlington is very busy for us and we have had another four cases in the past two weeks.

“We support them with getting to medical appointments, signposting them to services for mental health and drug and alcohol help, because they live really chaotic lives.”

Lucie said the number of rough sleepers in Bridlington has gone up by more than 50% since she started her job.

“I’m not sure if people come from out of town during the summer months and head to the coast.

“But the numbers are rising across the East Riding.”

Lucie said that in Bridlington the rough sleepers are spread around the town centre and Sewerby.

The majority are men, mainly in their 30s and 40s, but there are a couple of women on the streets too.

“Some people want accommodation, some are happy to be outside. Some of the most entrenched rough sleepers have been out there for years,” said Lucie.

She believes homeless people are attracted to Bridlington because of the range of help available.

The Emmaus team visits the town two or three times a week to check on the health and well-being of rough sleepers.

The Kingfisher Cafe provides meals from Wednesday to Sunday and the Salvation Army and Emmanuel Church run kitchens on the other days.

“There are more provisions in Bridlington than anywhere else in the East Riding,” said Lucie.

“They can get a hot meal every day of the week from one of the services, but accommodation is the major problem.

“We have hostels in Hull, but there isn’t one in the East Riding which homeless people can access without a referral.”

She recommended that anyone wanting to help people on the streets should buy food or drink, rather than giving them money directly, or giving donations of clothing or underwear to churches in Bridlington which are involved with homeless projects.