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  1. Ian Lang

Conwy traveller calls for more permanent sites

Pressure is growing on councils to provide more sites for the gypsy and traveller community.

Some Welsh councils currently do not provide any official sites at all.

In future all local authorities could be required to provide enough legal sites, proposed in a bill to be introduced later this month.

One traveller in Conwy says she has been forced into hiding because of hostility - and says an official site would be the answer to her dreams.

Proposal to make councils provide traveller sites

The Welsh Government says it wants to impose a new legal duty on local councils, to force them to provide new gypsy and traveller sites where a need has been identified.

Jeff Cuthbert, Communities and Tackling Poverty Minister, announced that the Wales Housing Bill will be introduced on 18 November.

He said: "if the proposed new legislation is passed, it will result in the creation of new sites where there is evidence of need - this in turn will reduce the number of unauthorised encampments."

Proposals for new sites in various parts of Wales have proven controversial in recent months.


Travellers leave Royal Gwent Hospital site

Aneurin Bevan Health Board can confirm that the travellers who were occupying our car park at the Royal Gwent Hospital have now left the site.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank our staff and patients of the hospital for their continued patience during this time.

We would like to particularly thank our facilities staff and security personnel who have managed the site for us over recent days.

– Aneurin Bevan Health Board

Travellers set-up camp in Welsh hospital car park

Royal Gwent Hospital workers in Newport were unable to use the staff car park. Credit: Wales News Service

Doctors and emergency staff have been turned away from their own hospital after a group of travellers moved in. Hundreds of NHS workers were blocked from parking at the Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport after the French travellers set up camp in the staff car park.

Surgeons, doctors and nurses were turned away after 14 caravans moved onto the staff-designated car park. Hospital spokesman Julian Hayman said the 300-space car park would be closed to staff for three days after the travellers told them they will "move on shortly".

Mr Hayman said medical staff would need to make alternative arrangements for parking until the caravans moved on.

Newport City Council said the creation of permanent sites for gypsies and travellers in the region went out to consultation last month and the final version of the plan will go before full council later this year