Opposition expected to potential Gypsy sites in Stockton

Stockton Borough Council

Stockton Borough Council

First published in News
Last updated
The Northern Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter (Stockton/Hartlepool)

SIX potential new Gypsy and traveller sites have been identified by a Tees council.

Stockton Borough Council has to identify space for at least 26 pitches under Government rules and a consultation exercise has been planned.

Councillor Bob Cook, leader of the council, said the authority was braced for “lots of comments and reaction” but stressed the authority had no choice but to identify the land.

The six areas so far identified for possible Gypsy sites are: land off Yarm Back Lane, Hartburn; Frederick Street in Stockton town centre; land between Bowesfield Crescent and the River Tees, Stockton; Mill Lane, Billingham; Eltham Crescent, Thornaby and land between the Tees and Thornaby Road, in Thornaby. The Hartburn land is privately owned, the others areas are owned by the council.

Coun Cook, Labour, said the current thinking was to have only one average-sized site and others with just one or two pitches.

He also stressed the council was not planning to actually build and run a site.

Instead it would be up to a private developer or Gypsies themselves to create one if planning permission was eventually granted. The council’s responsibility is simply to designate areas where a site could be created.

“We don’t want a giant one,” he said. “We’re thinking more of an average sized one and one or two pitches here and one or two there.

“This is something we have to do under the local plan. We’ve got to do it, there’s no choice. All councils have to do this.”

A council report, to be considered by Stockton council’s cabinet committee in Stockton Central Library on Wednesday, January 15 at 5pm, explained that if the council didn’t have enough areas designated for Gypsy use, the council’s planning committee would lose much control of where the sites could be built if private applications were submitted.

A public consultation exercise is scheduled to begin on Monday, February 3 until Monday, March 17.

Former council leader, Ken Lupton, Conservative, has one of the potential sites in his Hartburn ward. He said: “It’s very difficult. The Government are requiring this and we’ve got to find somewhere. I would expect local resistance and I will investigate and circulate information in the ward.”

The council does own one Gypsy site with 28 pitches on Bowesfield Lane and there are smaller, private ones on Darlington Back Lane and in nearby Maltby.

Comments (7)

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6:42pm Wed 8 Jan 14

loan_star says...

No doubt they'll all end up in Darlington!
No doubt they'll all end up in Darlington! loan_star
  • Score: 6

9:27pm Wed 8 Jan 14

Walker one says...

So council owned land which OUR council tax pays for is being considered for a PERMANENT settlement for TRAVELLERS does this mean they will be PAYING COUNCIL TAX? If. They are travellers why are they not TRAVELLING why do they need a permanent settlement???? We should not have to pay for land that they live on TAX FREE!!!!!
So council owned land which OUR council tax pays for is being considered for a PERMANENT settlement for TRAVELLERS does this mean they will be PAYING COUNCIL TAX? If. They are travellers why are they not TRAVELLING why do they need a permanent settlement???? We should not have to pay for land that they live on TAX FREE!!!!! Walker one
  • Score: 22

9:12am Thu 9 Jan 14

Jackaranda says...

"Opposition expected to potential Gypsy sites in Stockton"

What? They'll be welcomed with open arms, just as they are wherever they turn up, these God fearing pillars of society!!
"Opposition expected to potential Gypsy sites in Stockton" What? They'll be welcomed with open arms, just as they are wherever they turn up, these God fearing pillars of society!! Jackaranda
  • Score: 7

10:39am Thu 9 Jan 14

pager11 says...

Emigrate FAST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!!!
Emigrate FAST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!! pager11
  • Score: 5

1:03pm Thu 9 Jan 14

giggitty says...

If the councils obligation is to just designate areas and not to actually develop them, as Cllr cook says.

Why the heck are DBC spending £1.8m (or was it £1.2m) on a site up Neasham Road?

This is a genuine question. I'd prefer if the usual people didn’t spurge out the usual unsubstantiated bile! EG Craiggraham
If the councils obligation is to just designate areas and not to actually develop them, as Cllr cook says. Why the heck are DBC spending £1.8m (or was it £1.2m) on a site up Neasham Road? This is a genuine question. I'd prefer if the usual people didn’t spurge out the usual unsubstantiated bile! EG Craiggraham giggitty
  • Score: -2

1:13pm Fri 10 Jan 14

pager11 says...

giggitty wrote:
If the councils obligation is to just designate areas and not to actually develop them, as Cllr cook says.

Why the heck are DBC spending £1.8m (or was it £1.2m) on a site up Neasham Road?

This is a genuine question. I'd prefer if the usual people didn’t spurge out the usual unsubstantiated bile! EG Craiggraham
You could try contacting the Chief Execs office at the Town Hall, call reception on 380651 and ask to be put through.
[quote][p][bold]giggitty[/bold] wrote: If the councils obligation is to just designate areas and not to actually develop them, as Cllr cook says. Why the heck are DBC spending £1.8m (or was it £1.2m) on a site up Neasham Road? This is a genuine question. I'd prefer if the usual people didn’t spurge out the usual unsubstantiated bile! EG Craiggraham[/p][/quote]You could try contacting the Chief Execs office at the Town Hall, call reception on 380651 and ask to be put through. pager11
  • Score: -1

12:30am Fri 7 Feb 14

dstaps says...

Its good to see local authorities finally making moves to meet the needs of our communities. Only hope the sites are not next to a rubbish sites or behind some substation. As long as people keep taking the stance of not in my back yard there will always be division and lack of understand about different cultures within in our communities. Every one has a right to a home in my experience travelers/gypsy's cant just travel as even they need to rest. With local authorities not allowing or providing lawful .areas for stop overs where are they supposed to go. As for the usual comment of not paying ctax etc wheres your evidence. You also need to take a good look around how many people are on benefits do they pay ctax they cant all be gypsies.......
Its good to see local authorities finally making moves to meet the needs of our communities. Only hope the sites are not next to a rubbish sites or behind some substation. As long as people keep taking the stance of not in my back yard there will always be division and lack of understand about different cultures within in our communities. Every one has a right to a home in my experience travelers/gypsy's cant just travel as even they need to rest. With local authorities not allowing or providing lawful .areas for stop overs where are they supposed to go. As for the usual comment of not paying ctax etc wheres your evidence. You also need to take a good look around how many people are on benefits do they pay ctax they cant all be gypsies....... dstaps
  • Score: -1

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