Thanet council notified of Traveller encampments in Ramsgate

Local authority's are advised to use negotiated stopping agreements

Thanet council has been notified of two Traveller encampments in Ramsgate.

The small groups set up at the Marina Road car park at the Eastcliff and at the Western Undercliff, at the West Cliff.

Both areas have previously been used by Traveller groups as stopping points. The group at the Marina Road car park left the site today (June 17). Council officers carried out welfare checks with the people at the Western Undercliff yesterday and they remain on site.

Government guidelines are that to minimise risk during the national coronavirus emergency, unauthorised encampments should not be evicted.

Local authorities are encouraged to adopt a negotiated stopping approach for unauthorised encampments instead.

This involves a contract between mobile Travellers and councils that allow the Travellers to camp for up to three months on specified areas of vacant council land.

Thanet council doesn’t currently have Gypsy and Traveller provision. However, this has come under scrutiny following a huge rise in incursions from just two in 2013 to more than 50 last year.

Residents have complained of mess and faeces at both sites and the blocking of the path at the Undercliff.

One resident said: “The small Southern Water building opposite the motorhomes is mounding up with human excrement They have blocked the path with inflatables, boxes of beer and kids toys and it is now impossible to walk along the prom.”

Thanet council has been using negotiated stopping agreements in line with central Government guidance to cease evictions of unauthorised encampments during the coronavirus pandemic due to welfare and safety concerns. The authority says this will be reviewed when this guidance changes.

The Friends, Families and Travellers organisation says that in light of the known health inequalities within Gypsy and Traveller communities local authorities should take action that is based on the level of risk experienced by these groups.

Friends Families and Travellers have created guidance for people living roadside or on Traveller sites, including an audio version for people with low literacy.

A Thanet council spokesperson said: “We have been aware of unauthorised encampments at two locations in Ramsgate this week. The Western Undercliff site was visited by the council on June 16 and advice was given to the group about disposing of their rubbish appropriately.

“Our hardworking street cleansing officers have since cleared rubbish at this site.  Another group which were located at Marina car park have now left the area. The Community Safety team notified our Street Cleansing department that this site also required attention. The cleansing team responded promptly, clearing the area within a matter of hours.

“The Government has set out guidance which states that local authorities should not evict encampments while in lockdown. The council’s Community Safety team will continue to monitor the other encampment.”


  1. Does anybody know if this group includes the person that was said to be covid-19 positive that was in Dane Park? If so, why have they not been taken to somewhere remote and made to quarantine!

  2. I appreciate that TDC aren’t carrying out any traveller evictions during lockdown. However, what are they doing about the littering, flytipping and defecation? Surely these are separate offences that they can do something about so why aren’t they?

    For all the talk about getting tough on tourists leaving litter on the beach and treating the place as a toilet nothing is ever done about travellers doing exactly the same.

    • Have you seen Thanet’s streets, parks and beaches ? Thanet council very rarely takes enforcement action against Local residents that litter and turn our streets into a toilet so there’s no chance they will enforce it against the travellers.

  3. Nice to see they are keeping the place tidy and respecting others by blocking the promenade at Western Undercliff. They just don’t seem to understand, if you treat the place like a dump and take over an area that you have no right to be in, you will not be made welcome.

    Anyone that defends these people needs to have there heads checked. Unless of course you like fly tipping, abusive and threatening behaviour, breaking the law and have no regard for the people who’s tax pays to clear up there never ending mess they leave behind.

  4. They were in Margate yesterday, at the Turner Centre, occupying disabled spaces. Some of their rubbish was in bin bags (very unusual), but they had dumped the bags in the car park, I took photos, but don’t know how to add them on here.

  5. As a footnote, I congratulated one of the chaps who were cleaning up around the marina car park area just after these people had left and I could see the bags of rubbish and of what looked like human excrement being collected up from bushes and the foreshore. Not a very nice job for them but as he said it’s all part of the job.what I want to know is why these people are allowed to wander the countryside!

  6. As so many motor homes have been stolen the police should check the details of each and every one wherever they turn up

  7. The Council can not tell the travellers when they have to leave. But they could always lock the barrier at the Western Undercliff now so they know when they leave, and not let them in again. One thing they do not like is have their vehicles trapped in so they can not work or shop, do the other things they do.

  8. Thanet council should be disgusted with themselves. Covid 19
    and yet they evicted a young mum with a young baby On the streets. What does covid 19 mean to them as long as they are self isolating behind their desks!
    They can evict a vulnerable young person but not a group who clearly have disregards our community. They young mother never left feaces and rubbish at the place of living.

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