UPDATE: Travellers moved from Southwick Green ‘may head for France ‘

Travellers on Southwick Green. Photo by Derek Martin
Travellers on Southwick Green. Photo by Derek Martin

Travellers who set up camp at Southwick Green last night (June 8) have now been moved on by authorities.

Councillor Emma Evans said the travellers were moved at around 6.30pm this evening (June 9).

“They said they were going to France,” said cllr Evans.

“There were more in Fishersgate, who have also gone but only to the Albion Street carpark.

“They are going to be welfare checked by the West Sussex Welfare Officer tomorrow morning and the plan is to offer them a place on the Westhampnett transit site.

“If they refuse they have to leave the district and cannot return for three months.”

A police presence was also at the scene this evening.

On May 22, Sussex Police served another group of travellers at Southwick Green with a direction to leave under Section 62A of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994, and they all left that evening.

Authorities now direct groups to the West Sussex Transit Site in Westhampnett, just outside of Chichester.

Chief Inspector Will Rolls said: “After this encampment was reported to us we carried out a visit to the site to make an assessment and check on the welfare needs of the people there.

“This was carried out jointly with staff from West Sussex County Council.

“The use of powers under section 62 were authorised and officers gave the encampment a direction to leave as there were spaces available at the newly open transit site.

“The group subsequently left the location at around 11pm that evening.

“We have not received any reports over the weekend of damage or crime.”

A spokesman for Sussex Police added: “Section 62A gives the police additional powers to direct an unauthorised encampment to leave an area if there is space available on an appropriate transit site.

“This power has only recently become available in West Sussex for officers to use after the opening of such a site, elsewhere in the county, in April.”