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Hampshire woman told she can't use caravan on her driveway to shelter homeless

  • Watch Kerry Swain's report below

A woman from Hampshire who lets rough sleepers stay in a caravan on her driveway, says she is prepared to do legal battle with her local authority, who tell her she is breaking the law.

Becky Catchpowle from Havant has been told she is breaking planning laws by Havant Borough Council and could face a £5,000 fine.

I've got this nice caravan that I did up, on my driveway, but I thought it's just a bit of a waste. There's a perfectly nice warm place for someone to stay and I just thought why not, it's a nice thing to do. Therefore I've got no sympathy because you're asking me to throw a gentleman out, back on the streets, when you should have given him a place to stay in the first place and he wouldn't be asking me to sleep in his caravan."

– Becky Catchpowle

Becky had previously renovated the caravan to use it for holidays.

She then decided to open it up temporarily for the homeless.

Council officials say the caravan is a self-contained dwelling that requires permission.

However Becky claims that because her caravan relies on her home's own running water and electricity supply, it is not a separate dwelling.

Havant Borough Council contacted Mrs Catchpowle explaining the acceptable usage of the caravan on her premises. We have also invited her to the Plaza to discuss this matter in person to try and resolve the situation. At this stage we have issued Mrs Catchpowle with a Planning Contravention Notice should she continue to use her caravan in such a way that does not comply."

– Havant Borough Council