Money approved to stop travellers staying in car parks

More than £65,000 is to be spent by Chichester District Council to stop travellers pitching up in two of its car parks.

It will be used to install barriers to stop high-sided vehicles – such as lorries and caravans – from entering the Northgate and Cattle Market car parks.

The council also approved five planning applications to set up a total of 14 traveller pitches in West Ashling on land around Newells Lane.

All the sites will include hard-standing and one will include a day room.

The council granted permission for a change of use of the land west of Beachlands Nursery for the new traveller sites.

Two sites will be allowed to hold one caravan each, another with a static van and a touring van, one with two caravans and one with four static vans and four touring vans.

Cabinet member for growth and place Harsha Desai said there had been a number of unauthorised encampments in council-owned car parks in the past.

She said: "Complaints from the public and local businesses have increased and car parking spaces reduced as a result of the encampments."

Council leader Adrian Moss said: “I think it is really important that our partners West Sussex County Council and the police understand the real enormity of this and the work we’re doing.

“And hopefully they’ll be working closely with us in the future to ensure that when we do get incursions, we can actually move them on and ensure that the police come forward and support us at the earliest possible opportunity.”

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