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A couple of stories concerning local councils caught my eye in the paper this morning. First of all was the mess Birmingham Council have made over the sale Harborne Clock Tower, after running around patting themselves on the back over the sale it has been revealed that the tower was sold for a measly £100,000 vastly underpriced. and this is after the Council has spent £80,000 over the last 12 months on scaffolding.
Next we have the case of the once Moseley tram depot at Trafalgar Rd and Moseley Rd, despite repeated warnings from the planning department the now owner a Mr Safdar Zaman seems to be doing exactly what he likes with the Grade II listed building. Whatever they say he takes no notice and won't even attend meetings to try and resolve the matter.
My last gripe is about Solihull Council is now about to evict the protest camp at Meriden that was set up nearly two years ago in opposition to a gypsy encampment. The decision that the camp was illegal was reached last year, but nothing has been done to remove the remaining residents of the site. Though it seems they are prepared to move the protesters.
it is getting a very tricky situation with travellers sites these days. when land is sold off (and this we are told is green belt land and a nature reserve) so why was it sold to anyone. here in redditch as i am sure in other parts greenbelt land is sold off and private dwellings are built on the scale of dickens heath (which i absolutely hate) so why is it that travellers cant buy green belt land and settle.
before anyone comes back with the usual retort - travellers are rogues - i dont doubt they have a lot of their community that does illegal things, but so do our communities - but we fall over backwards to accommodate other origins and their cultures.
many years ago i found myself in the situationof having to go to a 'refuge' then known as a battered wives home - next door was a family of travellers, they were not posh but very friendly and helpful and would watch out for us ladies. my young son made friends with one of their boys and would go round after school for tea, i had no problems with them.
it always amazes me that these travellers are highly religious and attend the catholic churches and they are ready to take their money but no one wants them to live in the community. has any one seen the state that some of the farm yards and fields are in the country - a disgrace with broken farm equipment left lying around really spoiing the country.
i have come across many travellers on my many walks and they are always polite and friendly.
i am sure this will open a big discussion
I have been hired to clean up sites after Gypsies have vacated them. I have also been hired to clean out the houses on the Allen's Croft estate after Birmingham Council tried housing some Gypsy families there. Neither were very pleasant jobs and I won't go into details, enough to say that in both cases my lads had to wear the full anti contamination gear.
Yes I will agree that not all Gypsies can be tarred with the same brush, the only trouble is I am still waiting to meet some of the good honest hard working courteous kind.
We had “Travellers” in Yardley Park some time ago it cost the council £6000 to clear the mess and human excrement etc after they got rid of the filthy Tramps, who incidentally also stole lead off the roof of the 800 year old Church.
I started out with nothing and I've still got most of it lef
Yes, I agree and know where you are coming from. I used to work for a housing association in birmingham many years ago and the state of some of the houses was just terrible, these were not gypsies.
There are of course different types of traveller, the Irish traveller, the tinkers, romany (who originated from india) they are all different. I don't know how the Irish travellers get on in Ireland do they act the same way and are they treated the same.
Perhaps living out in rural Worcestershire the travellers I come across are diff. when they leave they usually leave rubbish in black bags (when people complain about this I explain they don't have a permit for the tip). We do out here in Redditch have a group of travellers who regularly park around the town they live in the old style gypsy caravans that are pulled by horses and they have a camp fire (not for me) but you never get any complaints about them. I am not sure if they are really gypsies but have just chosen the life, I have heard one of them talking on his mobile and he has a plum in his mouth.
My argument is what do we do with these people, they have bought some land - without terminating them all they are just going to move on to another piece of public property. A lot of building companies go about the job of building estates on green belt land that has been sold to them and do something without planning permission and get away with it - I know this for a fact. what I am trying to say is why should there be one law for one section of the community and a diff one for another.
I have got no personal axe to grind about these travelling people, over the years they brought me quite a few quid cleaning up after them and making sites safe from invasion by them.
What annoys me is that around the country there are many half full permanent sites that they could use, there is one in Birmingham that has never been more than half full so I hear. They won't use them for the simple reason they have to pay rent and rates and other everyday household expenses that we all have to pay.
The other thing is with a permanent address other things are traceable back to them, such as driving licences, vehicle road tax, vehicle insurance, waste carriers licence, operators licence, Income tax, national insurance. and all the other little things like that that they don't want to pay.
The thing is though every one of them have got accommodation addresses where they get income support, family allowance and old age pensions sent to.
I know what you mean phil, but surely if they are on their own sites as perm residents don't they have to comply and pay council tax etc. So solihull council as the case with Meriden can collect their rubbish. Perhaps I am looking through rose tinted glasses.
The site in Birmingham, is that not the one the Docherty family live on and from what i've heard they won't let anyone else live there.
I must admit that I have come across some very nice gypsy families, they've been out in the Evesham area, and they've come for the fruit picking and veg picking, which their families have done for centuries.
However, I don't agree with some of their ways, dog/cock fighting and the way they grab their girl friends, but there again i don't agree that we should allow other ethnics to carry on with their cultural ways that are illegal in britain,
It has just started snowing here.
Yes I was taking about the site in Birmingham that you mention, but the reason you outline is only used as an excuse. Lets face it if anyone made a serious application to take up a tenancy there it would be sorted. Once again I don't care how they react to each other nor does their ethnic diversity bother me.
Though at least they could pretend that they have some concern about our laws and ways. Other cultures at least do obey some of the rules.
Sites - Areas - Councils, nothing makes any difference to most of these Caravan Tramps. The only contribution any of these unwelcome visitors have made to our area in to the crime figures.
I started out with nothing and I've still got most of it lef
Never met a good one yet,coniving,scheming,two faced scumbags.
Come down here and see the state of the places they leave, when they are finally got rid of,there are two official sites locally which only have about 3 vans between them despite there being room for about 50.
From the opinions expressed on here, it seems you have been very lucky with your experience of travelling people. The only ones that I will admit to good feelings for are the New Age travellers who are very environmentally friendly and we never seem to hear of anymore.
i do understand that the travelling community do tend to habour illegal rituals.
as i said before we have a group of travellers in redditch who move around the borough, but they live in horse drawn caravans and their horses are left to graze on the side of the road, all the little caravans are in a circle with a fire in the middle, no one complains about them but i dont think they are proper gypsies, just decided that was the life for them.
however, i reiterate i have met several genuine gypsies and they have been friendly. for instance when i have been walking in the country i have come across them on the road side and i say good morning and they have always replied politely, some have even engaged in pleasant conversation.
again as i previously said, when i was in 'the battered wives home' a gypsy family lived next door and they were very friendly and would look out for us ladies as a lot of the husbands would try and come and find us, we felt safe that the family next door were there. my son used to go around after school because he had made friends with one of the children and they would play on the computer and then he would have his tea there sometimes. there is good and bad in all communities.
i live on an estate and we have metal theft, man hole covers, two local boys were caught.
as for the people of meriden i think they would be protesting if a council estate was being built there.