The National Motorhome Organisation have submitted the following objections to East Lindsey District Council with regards their proposed new Order to restrict access to Skegness car parks.
—– Original Message —–
The following are the National Motorhome Organisation objections to the proposed new Order for Skegness car parks.
- Breach of the Equality Act 2010
The Statement of Reasons state:
“These car parks have been used on a number of occasions by groups of travellers to the detriment of the amenity of the area, and for purposes which are not authorised by the existing off-street car parking order. As a result of this the car parks have, to one extent or another, been unavailable for use by members of the public wanting to use the car parks for their authorised purpose. This has also resulted in significant costs to the Council arising from the need to tidy, and in some cases carry out repairs to, the car parks. The Council has therefore decided to counter such use by imposing height restrictions on vehicles proposing to use these car parks, which will be backed up by the installation of height restrictions barriers at the entrance to each car park.”
Since 2002 Gypsy and Travellers have been recognised as an ethnic group and are protected under the Equality Act 2010. In England and Wales the Census 2011 recognised monitoring of ‘Gypsy or Irish Traveller’ as main ethnic category for Ethnicity date monitoring of travellers community. However, there is diversity in self-identification and choice among Gypsy and Travellers community on how they view their ethnicity.
The main groups are:
- The Romanies or ‘Romany chals’ of England and Wales
- The Kale of North Wales
- The Romanies who have come to the UK from Europe in the last hundred years
- Irish Travellers
- Scottish Travellers
- Show and Fairground Travellers
- Bargees and other families living in boats
- New Travellers
As this Order is aimed at an ethnic group which are protected under the Equality Act 2010 it breaches the Equality Act 2010
- Adequate Publicity
Without advertising the proposed Order in the Motorcaravan Motorhome Monthly magazine ELDC have failed to inform those who the new Order may affect – motorhomers – in breach of their legal requirement to do so.
- Statement of Reasons
The Official Statement of Reasons is very different to what Jacqui Berridge stated on Wednesday 19 November:
“The Council’s intention is to ensure that the car parks are available for any person to park, as you will appreciate that parking is the service which the Council provides on its car parks – not camping. The Council is therefore not discriminating against any race in trying to eradicate camping, but rather trying to ensure that every person, of whatever race or creed, is able to use the car parks for their intended purpose.”
As there is no reference to camping in the Official Statement of Reasons ELDC have failed to inform the public of the true reason as part of the consultation in breach of their legal requirement to do so.
- Notice of Proposals
This will have prevented the public using the main form of communication to submit their objections. The contact details should be the same wherever the proposed Order is published.
- Disabled Legislation
There is no provision for disabled access in the proposed Order in breach of disabled legislation.
- Traveller Sites
Instead of unlawfully preventing travellers using a car park by introducing the proposed Order ELDC should provide traveller sites. There are no traveller sites in the ELDC area, as such no alternative can be offered to travellers.
- Use Current Order
As the Unofficial Statement of Reasons is regards issues relating to camping ELDC should use the existing order to deal with this as camping is already not permitted under the current Order.
- Objection or Enquiry
On Thursday 20 November Jacqui Berridge stated:
“For the purposes of ensuring that there is no confusion about whether or not a statement submitted actually comprises an objection, it would be helpful if the word “objection” could be included within the written submission.”
ELDC failed to inform those submitting objections that they should include the word “objection” in their submission. As a result complaints may have been dealt with as an enquiry.
If ELDC introduce the proposed Order the National Motorhome Organisation will request a judicial review.
“(Yorkshiremen are) richly endowed with that gritty determination, that wilful refusal to give up and that sheer bloody-mindedness that eventually prevails.” Sir Bernard Ingham