Monday, 19 September 2011

So when will Barnet Council allocate it's 22 pitches for travellers families?

Back in 2009, the Barnet Eye reported that Boris Johnson had snuck through a legal ruling, requiring Barnet Council to allocate 22 pitches for travellers and their families.The Barnet Eye asked where these would be.

There has still been no satisfactory answer. We suspect that Boris and Brian Coleman are waiting until AFTER the elections for the Mayor & Colemans GLA seat before grasping this nettle. What strikes me as rather odd is the way Tory politicians scream blue murder about how travellers have erected an encampment, in contravention of planning law, but do nothing about :-

A) Their rich mates flouting planning law with all manner of overdevelopments on the Green belt and in the conservation area.
B) The failure of Barnet Council to obey the law and set up proper, well regulated sites

This blog is not going to pretend that there are not issues with traveller sites. What is 100% clear is that the problems are a million times worse with illegal and temporary sites than with properly run, well regulated ones.

Although it seems that Barnet Council has booted this into the long grass, it is a legal requirement and sooner or later they'll have to do something. I suspect that they know there will be a huge anti Tory backlash at the next Council election and they'll be out of power. Then this will just be yet another mess left for Labour to take over in 2014. I have it on excellent authority that Labour will site the 22 pitches on a site in the leafy ward of Totteridge, as there is plenty of space up there - a great site has already been identified. Brian Coleman can then explain to his constituents why he didn't sort the issue out when he was in the cabinet. I look forward to Mr Coleman nipping down to the traveller site for a spot of canvassing. I'm sure he'll be made most welcome.

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