Illegal travellers’ camps causing problems in Milton Keynes

Traveller camp in Bletchley
Traveller camp in Bletchley

Illegal travellers’ camps are proving a headache for residents in Bletchley and Tattenhoe.

Since last summer there has been a constant flow of camps in and around Tatt Park on Tattenhoe to the extent that residents say they do not feel safe walking in the linear park area.

Now another large encampment is causing problems in Bletchley’s Severn Drive, behind the RAF Club and Derwent Youth Centre.

“Dogs are fouling the field where children play football. Surely this is a health hazard. How long will it be before the council or police evict them?” said one resident.

Meanwhile in Tattenhoe residents say the travellers are using bushes as toilets.

“Who wants to be walking in the park to be confronted by someone relieving themselves in the bushes?” said local campaigner and former Tory councillor Edith Bald.

“Residents are completely fed up with the situation. The constant flow of travellers to Pendeen Crescent and into Tatt Park from last summer is just awful and it has got worse since the autumn. Unauthorised encampments here have been happening for many years but for reasons we don’t understand the frequency and troublesome nature of recent invasions has got much worse,” she added.

In Tattenhoe alone over the past year MK Council has spent more than £100,000 evicting and cleaning up after travellers, claims

Edith.

She has asked the council to issue injunctions on land around MK to deter travellers. She is also calling for a new designated and official travellers site to be opened in MK.

But the council’s response has been “woefully poor”, she said.

“Eviction is all very well but we need action to prevent the travellers moving in in the first place. Residents don’t feel safe using the parks and green spaces. There is a serious risk to public health from using open spaces as a toilet and the rubbish left after evictions is blighting the community. “

Edith added: “Why can’t we get an injunction from the court to stop invasions? I asked the council to look at this several months ago but all I hear is platitudes and excuses. It is time effective action was taken.”

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