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Parents angry after Travellers set up camp by Ilford school

PUBLISHED: 12:18 21 September 2017 | UPDATED: 12:18 21 September 2017

Travellers on land next to Cranbrook Primary School. Picture Ken Mears.

Travellers on land next to Cranbrook Primary School. Picture Ken Mears.

Archant

Parents are angry after Travellers have set up camp next to a school in Ilford.

More travellers are entering the siteMore travellers are entering the site

Police were dispatched to Cranbrook Primary School, The Drive, yesterday, and have been in talks with teachers.

“They are making an absolute mess there, it is disgusting,” a parent to three children told the Recorder.

“The ones that turned up first fair enough, but more are coming and they are being let in – we have heard they are coming from other sites in the borough and nearby boroughs.”

Other parents have alleged that the Travellers have thrown stones at schoolchildren and bricks through sheds.

One resident, whose property borders the school, said she had seen children from the community standing on her outbuilding roof and throwing bricks.

“I have seen them in my garden and shouted at them to go away,” she said.

“I called the police, but I think there is little they can do.”

A Met spokesman said they were aware of the site in question and officers had attended.

“We have liaised closely with the school, the landowners and the Travellers,” she said.

“During this time two calls were made to officers involving allegations of theft of tyres and throwing of stones.

“Officers on the ground promptly investigated these reports and found no evidence of any offences and there were no arrests.”

Police will be reviewing the situation and will continue to be in close contact with all parties concerned.

Redbridge Council said it is aware of the situation at the school as well as “a number of sites in the borough that have groups trespassing on them”.

In the last month Travellers have set up camp in Tesco Goodmayes, The Valentine pub in Gants Hill and the Doctor Johnson pub in Clayhall.

The council spokesman said: “Where these sites are on our land we are working hard to swiftly evict and clear them.

“Where the sites are on private land we are actively giving support and advice to the landlords affected and helping them through the eviction process.

“Barriers have been installed at many council sites to make them more difficult to access.”

He added that there have been several evictions either using police or council powers in the last few days and “work is underway to find a longer term solution”.

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