TRAVELLERS are back in the Uttoxeter area just weeks after two camps were dispersed by police.
After itinerants finally left town earlier this month, around a dozen caravans set up on the cricket pitch in Sudbury on Tuesday.
They have been issued notice by bailiffs enlisted by the National Trust, which owns the land in question, and must leave by 11am today.
Police are ‘monitoring the situation’ and have visited the site ‘several times’ since the caravans arrived.
However, they are unable to say whether the gipsies are the same ones who ‘invaded’ Uttoxeter’s Dovefields Industrial Estate and leisure centre in July.
Villager Geoff Hodson told the Post and Times there had been ‘no trouble at all’ since the travellers arrived.
He said: “It started with four caravans earlier in the week, then five, and on Wednesday they all started coming in their droves.
“Obviously gipsies have a reputation and a lot of people in the village are quite wary about them being here but we’ve had absolutely no trouble from them so far.
“You get to know if anything happens very quickly living in this village and I’ve not been told of any problems.
“This is the first year the pitch hasn’t been used for cricket so it’s not been cut and has become overgrown, which I think is a bit of an invitation for the travellers.
“Everyone would be pleased to see them removed as this is an idyllic village and we could really do without this.
“In the past trouble has followed when travellers have moved so, as soon as they do, everyone’s automatically worried.”
Jenny Layfield, general manager at the National Trust’s Sudbury Hall and Museum of Childhood, said: “A group of travellers are currently parked on National Trust land, leased to Sudbury Parish Council, at the front of Sudbury Hall and used as a cricket pitch.
“We are in contact with the group and have been liaising with them since they arrived. Bailiffs have served notice on the group requiring them to vacate the site by 11am on Friday 30th August.
“We have been working closely with local police who will be monitoring the situation to ensure that the travellers do vacate by the notice deadline.”
A Derbyshire Police spokesman said: “We received a call on Tuesday morning reporting that travellers had moved onto land at Sudbury Hall.
“Officers have visited the site several times over since this report was made and liaised with the travellers and staff at the hall. We will continue to monitor the situation.”
Itinerants disrupted businesses when they set up camp at Dovefields Industrial Estate in July.
Business owners described their behaviour as ‘intimidating’, particularly citing gipsy children being instructed to defecate on the car park.
Last week, the Advertiser reported how MP Andrew Griffiths backed the rejection of an application for a legitimate travellers’ camp in Draycott-in-the-Clay.