Housing and Strategic Planning Cabinet Member – minutes – 11 November 2008

26 (11) HOUSING AND EMPLOYMENT LAND ALLOCATIONS ADDITIONAL ISSUES AND OPTIONS FOR GYPSY AND TRAVELLER SITES 2008 – The Head of Strategic Regeneration, Housing and Development submitted a report updating on consultation received on the Housing and Employment Land Allocations Development Plan Document (DPD) additional issues and options for Gypsy and Traveller Sites 2008, and recommending potential sites for inclusion in the next stage of consultation as part of the DPD.

The Housing Act 2004 introduced a specific requirement for councils to assess the accommodation needs of gypsies and travellers within their area in the same way they assessed the accommodation needs of the settled community.

In 2007 the Salford Housing and Urban Studies Unit were commissioned by the council to undertake a cross boundary Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment (GTAA) with the neighbouring council of North East Lincolnshire.

The GTAA was finalised in May 2008. The study concluded that there was an additional need in North Lincolnshire for:

  • 34 residential pitches between 2007 and 2012;
  • 10 residential pitches between 2012 and 2016;
  • Two Showpeople pitches between 2007 and 2016;
  • 10 transit pitches across North and North East Lincolnshire between 2007 and 2016.

Through the ‘Issues and Options’ stage of the Housing and Employment Land Allocations DPD October 2007, the public were consulted and asked to submit any possible locations for Gypsy and Traveller sites. Unfortunately, no sites were identified at this stage, therefore the council looked to their own land for potential sites as outlined in the ODPM Circular 01/2006 ‘Planning for Gypsy and Traveller Caravan Sites’.

Following on from this the ‘Housing and Employment DPD Additional Issues and Options for Gypsy and Traveller Sites’ paper was produced in August 2008. This paper proposed seven potential sites, in council ownership, which may be appropriate for gypsies and travellers. These potential sites were then subject to extensive consultation with the public.

Gypsies and travellers were traditionally ‘hard to engage’ groups and as such were underrepresented in most public consultation exercises. To ensure that the gypsy and traveller population were consulted on the proposed sites, and their views documented, -the Salford Housing and Urban Studies Unit carried out a consultation exercise in autumn 2008.

The report gave full details of general and specific comments on each of the potential sites that had been put forward for gypsy and traveller accommodation, along with a detailed analysis of all options.

Resolved – (a) That the following sites be taken forward to the next stage of consultation as part of the preparation of the Local Development Framework Housing and Employment DPD:

  • Site reference GT7-3 – Caistor Road, Barton upon Humber
  • Site reference GT36-1 – Normanby Road, Scunthorpe,

(b) that following representations received for the other five potential sites, they not be taken forward, (c) that before any site for travellers be opened robust management arrangements be put in place, and (d) that outcomes of the petition hearings on the sites be fed into the consultation on traveller sites as part of the Local Development Framework process.