TRAVELLERS have left a recreational area in Chandler’s Ford where they stayed for three days.

The group broke into the park land by Glendowan Road on Thursday, June 22. Cllr Alan Dowden first spotted them around 8pm with around 10 vans, lots of vehicles and a large number of children.

The councillor spent three days responding to concerned residents’ calls and emails before the Travellers left the Valley Park area around 9pm on Sunday, June 25 following the bailiff's notice.

A Test Valley Borough Council spokesperson said: “The council was made aware of an unauthorised traveller incursion, where they had forced entry to gain access to open space off Glendowan Road in Valley Park.

READ MORE: Councillor says no area is safe as travellers take over recreation ground

“We worked hard to get them removed as soon as possible, liaising with the police, instructing bailiffs, issuing a section 77 notice and securing a court date within 24 hours. The travellers have now moved on, and we are in the process of clearing up and re-securing the site.”

A spokesperson for Hampshire Police said: “We can now confirm that the encampment has since moved from the site.”

Valley Park Parish Council said: "The Travellers left some rubbish behind and the playground rubber flooring was slightly damaged in places. Residents also reported detritus deposited in Monksbrook and excrement in the adjacent woodland. They seemed to have used the woods as a toilet and excrements and toilet paper were found on the grounds next to the playground and in the woods. 

"Test Valley Borough Council was going to meet with the police and discuss tightening the security measures. Residents also raised awareness of potential other access areas into the field. Test Valley mentioned they would look to make improvements around the main access point into the site and would explore options for resolving the other potential access points."

Cllr Dowden and the parish council kept residents informed via social media groups and by responding to emails and calls.

As previously reported, ward councillor Alan Dowden believes the district continues to be at risk of Travellers pitching up in open spaces until a transit site is introduced.

The Housing Act places a duty on local housing authorities to regularly assess the accommodation needs of Travellers living in the area.