Injunction banning encampments on council land
Last year Canterbury City Council successfully applied for an injunction banning unauthorised gypsy and traveller encampments on its land.
The sites protected by the courts included Kingsmead Field, the former Kingsmead coach park and Beverley Meadow in Canterbury, the Memorial Park and Neptune car park in Herne Bay, and the Faversham Road car park in Whitstable.
Anyone who illegally parks either a caravan or a mobile home on the land covered by the injunction is in breach of it and is required by law to leave immediately, or be in contempt of court.
This offence carries numerous sanctions including up to two years in prison and/or an unlimited fine.
There have been important decisions made by the courts in similar applications made by other councils during the last year which have limited the availability of this type of injunction.
The council is reviewing its position before deciding whether to apply to the High Court for the injunction to be renewed and is seeking views or information on the following:
- The principle of renewing the injunction
- Evidence or representations on the impact of the existing injunction on travellers, their travelling patterns and on individuals or families
- Whether the 83 sites listed in the current injunction should remain and whether they should be reduced.
Please email your views to Steve Boyle, Head of Legal Services, at email@example.com by Friday 5 June.
The idea behind the scheme is that it would limit the use of our ramps to those who have annual, paid membership – reducing the number of users, allowing the council to have a relationship with scheme members and enabling us to manage activity more safely. Ad hoc visitors would not be able to launch, there would be no capacity to sign up on the day.
Barriers would be installed at the ramps, with a padlock, keypad or fob which gives access.
If a scheme is introduced for jet skis, we would need to ensure that fishing boats and other craft would continue to be able to use the ramps too – whether part of a charging scheme or not.
The scheme would sit alongside the new byelaws, which reduce the width of the transit lanes and limit speed in these lanes to 8 knots (10mph) – pushing the noisier jet ski activity 300m away from the shore. In addition, we are consulting on new Public Space Protection Orders, which include prohibiting launching jet skis from our beaches – which would restrict launching to the ramps only.
Have your say
We are very interested in your views on whether we should introduce the scheme, and if so, how it should operate.
Give us your views by completing our questionnaire before 5pm on Sunday 30 August 2020.
These will be considered by a cross-party councillor working group before a formal decision is taken by committee on whether, and how, to proceed.
Published: 9 July 2020