Meeting called to discuss county-wide issue of unauthorised traveller camps

Travellers by the Pure Offices in Plato Close, Leamington.
Travellers by the Pure Offices in Plato Close, Leamington.
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Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner Philip Seccombe is to organise a county-wide round table meeting involving all agencies responsible for tackling the problems caused by unauthorised traveller encampments.

The meeting, which will be held within the next few weeks, will look at the current situation in the county and examine how effectively agencies work together.

Police and county council representatives – including the two gypsy and traveller Liaison officers – will be invited, alongside representatives of the five district and borough councils and the six county MPS including Warwick and leamington MP Chris White, Kenilworth and Southam MP Jeremy Wright and Rugby MP Mark Pawsey.

Alongside the current policies and practices of each responding agency, the meeting will also consider whether lessons can be learned from approaches taken elsewhere in the country and discuss if current legislative powers are sufficient.

Mr Seccombe said: “I welcome any opportunity to examine how well agencies are working together to solve the issues caused by unauthorised encampments by travellers, however this is a problem which affects all parts of Warwickshire and I think a county-wide approach is required and would be much more beneficial.

“I understand that the numbers of unauthorised encampments in Warwickshire have risen in recent years by around 30 percent and I fully understand the difficulties they can cause to local residents and to businesses.

“It is therefore vitally important that the agencies with statutory responsibility to deal with these issues work together quickly and effectively.

“By holding a county-wide round table meeting we can quickly understand what works well, what can be improved, what lessons might be learned from elsewhere and also how the existing legislation can be used to its best effect.”