Travellers moved off Chantry fields in Thornbury

SR_303_001     Travellers on the Chantry Playing Fields in Thornbury (8716438)

SR_303_001 Travellers on the Chantry Playing Fields in Thornbury (8716438)

First published in News

A GROUP of travellers were moved off Chantry playing field in Thornbury last Saturday after spending more than a week on the site.

On Thursday, July 17 six caravans moved on to the fields backing on to Stafford Crescent where they remained for over a week.

The Thornbury constabulary issued the travellers with a notice to leave the site within 24 hours on Friday morning and the last travellers left early on Saturday morning.

Nearby residents raised public health concerns, particularly regarding waste disposal before the travellers moved off the site.

One resident, whose house looks over the field, and did not wish to be named, said: “I’m outraged, we don’t want them here, the playing fields looked lovely and now they’re driving all over them, they will ruin it.”

Another resident, who is 65 and also did not want to be named, said: “The illegal occupation of the Chantry Field raises the pressing question of hygiene and public health since there are neither waste disposal nor toilet facilities nor clean water supplies on the field.

“There is also a real threat from the contamination of the land by rotting food waste and bodily waste unless steps are taken immediately to remove the campers before such contamination becomes widespread, rendering the field unsuitable for sports or leisure use for a considerable time.

“I am aware of several elderly local residents who are very concerned by the presence of the campers and the potential for increased criminal offences against property and the person, as well as the likelihood of public health problems arising from dumped waste on the field.

“I feel distinctly uncomfortable about the presence of these caravans on the field and have had to take increased security precautions because I feel that my property may be threatened.”

The Thornbury Town Council’s town clerk, Judith Payne said: “The main group of travellers left on Saturday (26th) morning. South Gloucestershire Council will be in charge of the clean-up.

“I went down to have a word with the travellers whilst the police and trading standards were there – we had to follow the procedure, we couldn’t just kick them off.

“We’re now building a bund to stop anyone getting on to the fields in the future and there will also be a height barrier which can be moved by unlocking it.

“South Gloucestershire Council acted quickly and efficiently and the travellers moved off after being asked to by the police.”

Similar installations are also being put in place at Mundy playing fields, in the town, to prevent anyone driving on to the fields there.

In 2008 a group of travellers moved in to the Thornbury Leisure Centre car park and after a long dispute a permanent traveller’s site was put in place at Tytherington Road Nursery in Thornbury.

Comments (2)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

2:21am Fri 1 Aug 14

Freda Piles says...

I would hope that the police checked that their vehicles were taxed and insured as well as requesting any litter be picked up from where they were camped. They should obey the rules as everyone else has to. Don't feel sorry for them as this is the life they have chosen.
I would hope that the police checked that their vehicles were taxed and insured as well as requesting any litter be picked up from where they were camped. They should obey the rules as everyone else has to. Don't feel sorry for them as this is the life they have chosen. Freda Piles
  • Score: 3

10:30am Fri 1 Aug 14

Thornburyboy says...

On the positive side. at least the travellers had a nice clean field to camp on, the result of the town council prohibiting dog walkers (ie council tax payers) many years ago.
On the positive side. at least the travellers had a nice clean field to camp on, the result of the town council prohibiting dog walkers (ie council tax payers) many years ago. Thornburyboy
  • Score: 4

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree