Revised plans for Temporary Traveller Pitches at two Thanet sites to be discussed

Travellers' site proposals Photo Gavin Wallis

Proposals for temporary Traveller sites in Thanet will be discussed by council Cabinet members – with two sites now removed from the proposals and two being brought forward.

In December approval was given for further work to assess Potten Street in St Nicholas-at-Wade, Tivoli Brook in Margate and Ramsgate Port for use as temporary tolerated stopping sites.

But both Ramsgate Port and Tivoli Brook have been removed from the plans.

Councillors will now consider the sites for Potten Street and a new addition of agricultural land off Shottendane Road in Margate.

Tivoli Brook has been removed due to “the potential commercial development and the opportunity it creates for income generation and employment,” while Ramsgate Port is scrapped from the proposals because it is “presently undergoing a feasibility study and the proposed area is in use for the storage of cars and is returning a revenue, it is also an industrialised area and not suited to families and young children.”

A new matrix to map out advantages and disadvantages now lists the land at Shottendane, with a report to councillors saying: “Over the last six months, especially considering the impact of the global pandemic there has been a significant amount of change and as part of this the council is reviewing how it delivers services in the future and how it can maximise the benefits of revenue opportunity from existing assets.

“It was therefore agreed by Cabinet to further consider agricultural land in the ownership of the council for the use as a temporary site, and that these would be assessed against those already considered and a suitable scoring exercise undertaken.”

The aim is to use the sites on a rotation basis to alleviate the issue of unauthorised camps on the isle.

Unauthorised encampments

Thanet currently does not have an authorised Traveller site, with the nearest being in Canterbury and Dover.

Unauthorised encampments at sites including Dane Valley, Marina Esplanade, Government Acre and the car park by Dreamland have risen sharply from two in 2013 to 55 last year.

According to a previous council report some 70 locations across Thanet have been assessed as vulnerable to vehicle based unauthorised encampments.

The report to Cabinet members says: “The two sites with the highest score were Shottendane (and Potten Street  and it is therefore recommended that both these sites are taken forward as the most suitable locations subject to engagement with relevant Parish Council/Ward Members.”

‘Tolerated’ pitches’

A need for 7 permanent and 5 transit vehicle pitches in Thanet was identified in a study for Thanet council. Temporary tolerated pitches are when unauthorised encampments stay for an agreed amount of time.

The council says this means smoother enforcement is easier on those unauthorised encampments which chose to ignore the direction and stay on other land.

A temporary tolerated site also allows easier management of amenities such as waste collection and toilet provision, reducing the impact on the local area.

The next steps will be for TDC to create a project plan for bringing the sites forward for use including full costs, timescales, resident engagement and site operational plans.

Further approval will be sought from members to agree the budget required to deliver the plan.


Speaking of the temporary pitch proposals Joseph Jones, of the Gypsy Council, previously told The Isle of Thanet News: “It’s nice to see a positive move towards a responsibility to provide, but I still feel there is room for a permanent site too. In Leeds, Yorkshire, they have a tolerated site policy, well tried and tested and it’s good that TDC are looking in that direction.”

Councillors will discuss the proposal at a Cabinet meeting on July 30.


  1. Should look at the lorries parked round Manston. I was shocked that the council has not fined them and moved them on.
    I was told they live litter and human poo all round the area… You need to see it. Deal with it. If you move travellers on. Move foreign drivers on ffs tdc

    • Rebecca Hooper, did you take DNA samples from the FOREIGN drivers and matched it with faeces around Manston to support your XENOPHOBIC COMMENT? When you have finished reading this comment, please read the book ‘Me and White Supremacy: How to Recognise Your Privilege, Combat Racism and Change the World’ by Layla Saad because I expect more and better from you

      • Haven’t been there personally – so can’t give definitive reply; but, if the majority of lorries parking there have non-UK plates, could this be the reason for Rebecca’s comment …… plus condescending recommendation to read the publication is not required – racism in this world is not confined to ‘white supremacy’ and ‘white privilege’ – open your eyes or take off your blinkers and examine the situation worldwide …..

  2. I cannot see why the old hoverport site could not be used. It already has water and sanitation pipes underground, and it is near enough to towns to give the travellers access to facilities, but far enough away for them not to be a nuisance to residents.

  3. That’s all Thanet needs we’ve seen the abuse of car parks on beach fronts and made into a dump ,a real joke council
    Go ahead for luxury flats on Ramsgate seafront and dump in car park …council get in order luxury or this can’t be both
    Bad enough all the drunks and drug dealers in town setting cars on fire and dealing drugs use some of the funds to clean up

  4. Who will pay for the upkeep of these ‘official’ sites for travellers?
    Will TDC be collecting council taxes and rent from those who use the facilities provided?
    Will these travellers be charged commercial rates to remove all the rubble and detritus that will inevitably left behind, as previous experience has shown to be their normal modus operandi?
    Will they be required to operate under the normally accepted rules of society.
    Answers on a postage stamp, please.

  5. The local plan already destroys a huge percentage of grade 1 agricultural land , which is unbelievable it was except on such scale.This removes yet more land out of production. All this cannot be replaced. Situating travellers of the Shottendane rd will only lead to huge issues locally. Coming up with , oh we have some agricultural land , lets site it there, really is not the way forward.

  6. Are they going to be charged rent to stay there in order to cover the cost of waste disposal etc? Everyone else has to pay for where they live….

  7. Once TDC have provided official stopping sites it is much easier to then deal with illegal stopping elsewhere in Thanet. Canterbury Council have done this very successfully with a district wide injunction preventing Travellers stopping on any other Council land other than the approved sites. If Travellers do this in Canterbury they can be evicted same day.

    Other Councils have also introduced a system of charges for using the approved sites. For example, TDC should introduce a weekly facilties charge of around £80 paid by card only to cover the costs of running the sites. They should also take a deposit from any Travellers turning up which is only repaid if they leave the site clean and tidy when they leave.

    These are all sensible things the Council have the powers to do which probably means, in TDCs case, they will do the exact opposite.

  8. WE who? The type of terminology you are using is problematic as it is inflammatory and divisive, and in this context, xenophobic. Address your fear of the traveller community by going to visit them next time they park up near by and get to know them (or go to – click on policy for great resources to gain knowledge and insights to this community) instead of pointing at them from afar and speaking ill of those you view as lesser beings.

  9. Instead of being known as THE GARDEN OF ENGLAND Kent is now known as the DUMPING GROUND OF ENGLAND sort it out

  10. Time to change the law.
    If unauthorised stops are made then when th pretty eviction health checks are done add an assessment for clearing up the site. If the travellers won’t pay then their caravans and vehicles should be seized and sold to cover the costs.

  11. That seems a good idea Thanetian Blind! I believe research has shown travellers do commit anti-social behaviour wherever they decide to locate, especially filth, and faeces! But £80.00 a week seems a bit stiff for renting a plot, which may put some off, so they move somewhere unlicensed!

    • The fee would cover TDCs costs in running the site, providing utilities and toilets etc.
      There is nothing in law saying these facilities have to be provided free of charge. You certainly can’t assume all Travellers are poor. If Travellers don’t want to pay it they might pitch up somewhere unauthorised but,as long as TDC get an injunction stopping them pitching up anywhere else apart from approved sites, they would get evicted same day.

      We have a perfectly working model of this in Canterbury. That’s why they don’t get issues with unauthorised camps. TDC, as usual, are way behind the curve.

  12. Potten street is not a great site, its a layby, where will the drivers go who park there for rest breaks and overnight parking, also is having children and animals next to a busy dual carriageway a good idea, this is asking for an accident to happen. Also whos going to clear up the mess that’s left,how do you expect to recover the extra costs for clear ups. find a brownfield site and use it. Laybys are no places for families to live

  13. If you read this correctly , this post is nothing to do with the ‘Traveller’ community. It is about the LORRIES heading to France. Drivers have to take mandatory breaks and they use this area to take their breaks. YOU are the only person who has mentioned travellers.

    • You are an absolute burke.

      Read it properly, look at all the comments from other about travellers. The clue is also in the title “travellers”
      Then look at the photo; travellers in caravans.
      Absolute stupid idiot, trying to make yourself look pathetic.

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