Travellers finally moved off old gas works site in Broadstairs

The last of the Traveller encampment has now gone

Travellers have been moved on from a plot of land in Broadstairs – three months after they first arrived.

Some 10 caravans were initially on the old gas works site in Northdown Road in August. Land owners The Mockett Trust had to go through a lengthy process to finally get bailiffs on site to remove the Traveller encampment. The bulk of the group left before legal action was completed but the remainder was moved this week.

The land is currently subject to a planning application for homes. An application for 140 properties, sheltered housing and a scout hut was refused in September.

One resident, who didn’t want to be named, said: “There were lots of problems in the road but people kept giving the group work.

“It took a long time to get the bailiffs on there, the Travellers were there for about three months. I think they need more security, a patrol once a day.”

When Travellers move on to privately-owned sites the landowner can attempt to agree a leaving date with the group or take proceedings in the County Court under the Civil Procedures Rules 1998 to obtain a court order for their eviction as trespassers.

The landowner may be in breach of planning legislation and the Caravan Sites Act 1960 unless they have already obtained planning permission for a caravan site.

If there is no planning permission the council may take proceedings against the landowner to require removal of the illegally parked caravans.

Planning agents and architects Colwyn Foulkes & Partners confirmed the group has now been moved on but said there would be no further comment while their clients were involved with the planning application process.

The area now needs to be cleared.

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