Beauty spot ‘ruined’ by travellers’ mess

The site after the travellers left
The site after the travellers left

There was anger after a traveller encampment left a blooming Linslade wildlife spot brimming with mess.

Friends of Tiddenfoot Waterside Park contacted the LBO after the travellers were forced to move from the site off Mentmore Road last Tuesday.

Describing the area as full of debris and discarded waste, Mike Moran said the encampment had ruined two years of careful cultivation to create a wildlife spot.

He said: “There’s a hole in the side of the barn. They’ve hacked it with chainsaws and they’ve broken padlocks.

“The horses were eating the hedges and so on. There was rubbish everywhere.”

Mr Moran said it was a bitter pill for the volunteers who have been working at the spot to help cultivate local wildlife.

He said: “We’ve been working there for two years, and we got a Green Flag community award earlier this year for our wild park and now it’s been destroyed.

“It’s so much work and it’s all volunteers.”

Much of the waste was cleared away by the council later that day, but not before a number of residents spotted the damage.

Michaela West said: “I see the travellers have gone but the mess they have left is disgusting.

“Fences are missing, the height bar at the entrance has been busted open and there is rubbish all around the car park.”

Central Bedfordshire Council had given notice to the travellers to leave over a week ago, and it is understood they overstayed the notice period. In spite of magistrates being informed, a council spokesman said “this was not an extraordinary case”.

He added: “We understand that the travellers moved to private National Trust land, in which case we would only be able to act in an advisory capacity.”

A spokesmen for the National Trust confirmed to the LBO that the travellers had moved to its land in Totternhoe, but by yesterday had moved on.

The Gypsy Council failed to comment when asked to by the LBO.

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