Travellers could face arrests if they return to Croydon sites after eviction says council


An agreement between the authority and police is being drawn up.


By Lamiat Sabin

Travellers thrown out of Croydon could face arrest and tough sanctions if they return to the same sites, the borough’s Conservative council said yesterday.

Fifteen caravans were evicted by council officers and police from Lloyd Park on Thursday July 4 after causing damage to the sites and leaving behind rubbish heaps.

An agreement between police and the council is being drawn up to see travellers facing arrest under a section 61 notice. 

Councillor Simon Hoar, cabinet member for community safety and public protection, said: “These travellers were a particularly nasty group, who were threatening and abusive.

“Thursday’s operation sends out a clear message that we will not tolerate this type of behaviour in Croydon.”

Travellers are said to have caused mess requiring a £25,000 clean-up after they stayed at Croydon Athletic Football Ground near Mayfield Road.

Mounds of builders’ rubbish, domestic waste and an entire caravan were also left in Sanderstead Recreation Ground last week.

A total of 37 encampments were moved on this year with the majority found in parks, the public highway and council-owned land.

Council officers dealt with 83 unauthorised encampments last year, which in some cases required bailiffs, at a cost of more than £128,000. 

Superintendent Rob Atkin, Deputy Croydon Police Borough Commander, said: “We will be working closely with local partners and the council to ensure we’re using the full range of powers available to us all to tackle any illegal encampments on the borough.

“Any groups that continue with this behaviour can expect to be dealt with robustly.”

Photo courtesy of Councillor Tim Pollard, with thanks.

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