Zero tolerance approach to unauthorised encampments
Newark and Sherwood District Council has today pledged a ‘zero tolerance’ approach to bring a halt to unauthorised caravan camps.
Priority will be given to stopping such incidences following a spate of recent cases which have adversely affected the lives of local residents and cost the council time and money to deal with.
In the past few weeks unauthorised encampments have been set up in a number of locations in and around Newark, including the car park at the Newark Sports and Fitness Centre off Bowbridge Road, Sconce and Devon Park, Thorpe Oaks Playing Field in Coddington and public space off Marston Moor Road.
District council leader Councillor David Lloyd said: “Like local residents, I am fed up with the surge of unauthorised encampments which are affecting the same communities too regularly. In recent cases we have acted immediately, within the law, to serve eviction notices.
“But I want to make Newark and Sherwood a no-go area for such unauthorised encampments and I am overseeing meetings with colleagues and other agencies to ensure that full and proper procedures are in place to deal with this.
“This will include a review of public open spaces. I want to make it more difficult to drive onto them, without damaging the enjoyment of them by residents all year around. Albeit this won’t happen overnight but we will prioritise those areas that are most regularly affected. I intend to work with all landowners to increase early-warning alerts and resilience. There is a clear message: There are more suitable places where they can go without impacting on the local community. Anywhere else is improper and unwelcome and will not be tolerated.”
Members of the public can also assist by reporting any incident of criminal activity anti-social behaviour or public nuisance, that may be associated with such encampments, to the police or the council as appropriate.