Travellers move from illegal site near Sheffield after police act over threatening behaviour and intimidation

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Travellers have moved on from an illegal site near Sheffield after the police took action over reports of threatening behaviour and intimidation.

Around a dozen traveller families arrived at Catcliffe Recreation Ground, Catcliffe, last Thursday on the same day that four other caravans were parked up in Asda’s car park at nearby Handsworth, Sheffield.

They left the illegal camp in Catcliffe last night and an urgent clean-up operation has now been mounted.

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Last month around two dozen traveller families set up camp on the same site in Catcliffe.

Travellers who set up an illegal site near to Sheffield have leftTravellers who set up an illegal site near to Sheffield have left
Travellers who set up an illegal site near to Sheffield have left

They broke into changing rooms and toilets on the site during their week-long stay that time.

A clean-up operation was mounted after they left when human excrement and rubbish was found strewn around the recreation ground.

In the wake of the earlier visit, extra security measures were put in place but travellers still gained access to the recreation ground, where there are football pitches and a playground.

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Catcliffe Parish Council has issued a statement following the latest illegal visit.

In a letter to residents, it said the travellers left after being served a S61 notice by the police, which gives officers power to direct an encampment to leave once the landowner has made reasonable steps to remove the occupants.

The council said: “The police acted after receiving allegations of threatening behaviour and intimidation.

“Our immediate task is to carry out a clean up to make the recreation ground safe for everyone.”

It said extra security is now being ‘addressed urgently’.

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The council said it had been ‘bombarded with comp laints’ as to why it was seemingly not doing anything about the travellers.

“We can assure you we have been in constant dialogue with police, environmental health, solicitors, bailiffs and others. We have faithfully carried out the procedures allowed us,” the council said.

“We would like to sympathise with residents for the understandable distress during this episode. Hopefully you will appreciate it’s not been easy for us as both residents and volunteers.

“We can now concentrate on serving the parish to good effect and work with everyone to make Catcliffe a better place to live.”