Joint statement on unauthorised encampment at Heatherside
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Surrey Heath Borough Council has this afternoon (26 June) served the members of the unauthorised encampment on Heatherside Recreation Ground with a legal notice to vacate the site under Section 77 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994.
There are 23 caravans and 31 associated vehicles at the encampment.
Surrey Heath Borough Council Officers have visited the site to undertake welfare checks and, given the number of people onsite, have arranged for additional temporary toilet facilities which will be arriving on site shortly.
Surrey Police Borough Commander, Inspector Alick James said, “I am aware of the large encampment in Heatherside and several of my officers and I have attended this afternoon. I appreciate the concerns that this encampment may cause to local residents and businesses, especially with Coronavirus still in the forefront of our minds. It’s important for the public to know that we can only respond to concerns that have been officially reported to us either online, via 101 or 999 if there is crime taking place right now. These reports form the basis for our evidence-based decision-making, you can use reference PR/ 45200066001, and I will be applying the National Police Chiefs' Council guidance on authorised encampments published at www.npcc.police.uk. Officers will continue to have a presence in the local area to provide reassurance to the community."
The Council will take the next legal steps and apply to the Courts when they re-open on Monday if those in the encampment fail to comply with the notice to vacate.