Over the last few months, the same group of travellers has moved from green space to green space across the borough - Shirley Hills, Addington Park, Rowdown Fields, Lloyd Park, South Croydon Rec, Sanderstead Rec, Shirley Oaks and Spring Park Rec to name just those I have been notified about.
Each time, it costs owners of the land (the Council in most cases) money to serve an eviction notice and to clear up the mess they leave behind, which often includes human excrement. On top of that, law-abiding Council Taxpayers feel unable to use the green space in question while the travellers are there. This is unacceptable.
If people want to live an itinerant lifestyle they have every right to do so, but they do not have a right to illegally occupy public land or make everyone else pay the cost of cleaning up after them.
I have spoken to the Council about this on numerous occasions and I am pleased to learn that they are now looking at the possibility of securing an injunction banning this group from the borough altogether. I have also written to Government Ministers to see if councils can be given further powers - for example, at the moment the Council can impound their cars but not their caravans, which would clearly be counter-productive since it would mean they then wouldn't be able to move their caravans off the site in question. If they could impound both, that might act as a serious deterrent.
The bottom line is this anti-social behaviour cannot be allowed to continue.