New: Caravan park on Stray - action this Friday?

The caravan on the Stray in Harrogate this week. (1806291AM3)
The caravan on the Stray in Harrogate this week. (1806291AM3)

There are no signs this morning so far of the caravan 'camp' on Harrogate's Stray moving on - but Harrogate council's efforts to move it on will hit a crunch point as early as Friday.

It’s not the first time this happened in Harrogate, though usually it happens outside of the centre of town in Pannal or Starbeck.

Legal action - Travellers on the Stray. (1806291AM1)

Legal action - Travellers on the Stray. (1806291AM1)

But the sight of the travellers mini convoy currently encamped on Harrogate’s cherished Stray has caused more alarm than for several years - with volunteers who protect the Stray saying the ancient parkland must not be allowed to turn into a "free for all."

After the clump of seven or eight caravans appeared in the middle of the legally-protected park land near York Place at the start of the week a social media storm erupted.
As it has done several times in the recent past, Harrogate Borough Council tried to move the camp on straight away but their requests were refused at the camp.
The next big moment will take place in court tomorrow.

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The unpaid volunteers who act as the Stray’s guardians have praised the council’s efforts but said the green should not be allowed to turn into a “free for all.”

Judy d’Arcy Thompson, chairman of the Stray Defence Association said: “Our council do an amazing job maintaining our beautiful Stray. Having been in touch with them we are reassured that that they have acted with great efficiency to ensure that the travellers are moved on as quickly as the law allows.

“The moving of vehicles, including caravans, onto Harrogate’s Stray is in flagrant breach of the Stray Act and would be unacceptable whoever did it. It would not matter who arrived on the Stray, whether it was scouts, guides, revellers or travellers. It cannot be turned into a free-for-all camp site.”

Harrogate council served the makeshift camp with a notice to move on Monday.
After the request was refused, the council decided to take the matter to court with a decision expected tomorrow, Friday.

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