Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Travellers can stay on Newquay 'death trap' site

From the Cornish Guardian

A FAMILY of six Travellers has moved onto a "death trap" derelict hotel site in Newquay, the Cornish Guardian has learnt.

The group, which includes two adults and four under-18s, set up camp at the former Cedars Hotel at the junction between Mount Wise and St George's Road last week.

Police and social services visited the "rat-infested" site on Tuesday to check on the youngsters' welfare, but decided no action was necessary.

The resort's police chief, Inspector Ian Drummond-Smith, said the landowners were aware of the Travellers and had not requested eviction.

Cornwall Council's environmental health team has advised the family it is unsafe to live on the site. It is understood they had intended to move on but one of their children developed an abscess on her foot and needed medical treatment in the resort.

Mr Drummond-Smith said police would continue to monitor the site, adding: "We have limited powers to move Travellers from land. We have contacted the landowners and are happy they are aware of the situation. At this time we have not received any request to remove the Travellers."

The news has sparked fresh calls for the eyesore site to be better secured, or even demolished, after children were spotted playing on bikes within the perimeter fence.

John Coltman, owner of the nearby Trelinda Hotel and vice-chair of Newquay Town Residents' Association, said: "We've had enough. This has been going on since 2003 and the place is a death trap. Are they waiting for someone to get killed in there?

"I'm paying rates here on my hotel and just up the road we've got a site that's infested with flies and rats. It looks like something out of Slumdog Millionaire. This isn't Bombay, it's the main tourist town in Cornwall. This is negligence in a big way by Cornwall Council."

Kevin Brader, the council's senior environmental health officer, said two enforcement notices had been served on the owners, aimed at securing the site and removing rubbish. Contractors have been on site this week.

"The building is in a state of disrepair," he said. "We want it secured and we will ensure this is carried out. Any costs incurred will be recovered from the landowner."

A structural assessment was carried out on the hotel which found the building was not in danger of collapsing.

Mr Brader said: "If it was likely to fall down we could insist it was demolished but it is structurally stable so that isn't required."

An application was lodged in August last year to build 35 residential flats on the site. The site owners, believed to be Cornwall-based Rockmount Developments Ltd, could not be contacted.

Monday, 13 August 2012

St.Keverne and Coverack new sites

Despite the Councillors' fears that St.Keverne might become a 'hub' for Travellers, the New Travellers currently living in the quarry were unaware of the Coverack site and the proposed new pitches. Their arrival is coincidence.

From the West Briton

Parish council told of plans for official Travellers' site

MORE details have emerged of a potential official site for travellers in the Coverack area.

They came at Thursday's St Keverne Parish Council meeting when there was also concern voiced that the parish could become "a hub" for Travellers.

The remarks came after it was revealed that a group of Travellers has moved onto the Dean quarry site.

The parish has previously taken issue with the presence of a separate group of Travellers' at a car park in Coverack and fojavascript:void(0)r a time on one of the approaches to St Keverne.

Members were told of plans for six permanent pitches and two temporary ones if an official site is approved.

The meeting also heard that negotiations were taking place with Cornwall Council as part of an overall scheme for Travellers and affordable housing in the village.

But the exact location is not yet being divulged for fear of attracting more travellers to the area.

Earlier in the meeting, Councillor Anthony Richards said Travellers in vans and tents had moved into the former Dean quarry site.

He said: "Presumably they will be evicted in due course," but he also believed the council should make sure the landowners were aware of the situation.

"We should really push Cornwall Council into completing its Travellers' site within the parish."

Councillor Roger Combe questioned how the Travellers had got onto both the car park site a few years ago and now the Dean quarry location.

Councillor Dorothy Kemp said a lot of people living near the quarry site were concerned.

Councillor Bill Frisken also pointed out there had been gates at Dean quarry.

"It would appear Travellers generally have got wind of the fact there are going to be sites provided in this region," he said. "St Keverne is going to become a hub for travellers."

see also - Travellers move onto St Keverne quarry