New Gypsy and Traveller sites for district

New Gypsy and Traveller sites were recommended for approval at a heated public meeting on Thursday afternoon.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 28th February 2013, 5:00 pm

Hundreds of protesters descended on Central Beds Council’s Chicksands offices as the sustainable communities overview and scrutiny committee put forward plans for the new sites.

Possible sites in east Bedfordshire could be installed on land east of Potton Road and Ram Farm in Potton, south east of Park Corner Farm and south of Dunton Lane in Biggleswade and south of Fairfield and west of Stotfold Road in Arlesey.

Kennel Farm Holdings to the east of Biggleswade has also been recommended as a potential site for travelling show people to use.

Meanwhile in west Mid Beds two possible sites could be installed near Pulloxhill and Tingrith.

Protesters travelled to Chicksands from all over the area, many of whom were barred from entering the council chamber.

The council set a limit of 180 in the chamber but many more tried to enter before the meeting started at 10am.

PCSOs and security staff were called in to hold back the angry crowd.

Members of the public from towns and villages across the area appealed to members of the committee to consider the adverse effects that they claim new Gyspy and Traveller sites could have on their neighbourhoods.

Representatives from Potton were particularly vocal.

Central Beds Councillor for Potton Doreen Gurney said the town already had a well-established site in place and the one put forward in the council’s Gypsy and Traveller plan was not suitable for this kind of purpose.

The sites will now be considered by the council’s executive committee before going to full council.

They will then be subject to a public consultation.