Caravan crackdown set to remove trailers from city streets

Posted On 22 Jun 2016 at 12:56 pm

Caravans, trailers and other engineless vehicles left stored on roads or pavements in Brighton & Hove are set to be towed after four out of five people said they would support a crackdown.
Councillors are being asked to approve the change in an attempt to tidy the streets and free up parking spaces.

It would entail the council invoking already-available powers under the Highways Act 1980. In a survey 82 per cent of respondents said they support action being taken.

So-called non-motorised vehicles or NMVs are seen as an increasing problem. Since 2012 the council has dealt with over 400 reports.

Historically the council has only ever removed NMVs using refuse disposal powers. But this requires them to have been abandoned. Lived-in vehicles are tackled by the council’s travellers team.

Until now there has been no policy on vehicles which are neither abandoned nor lived in.

However Section 143 of the Highways Act allows removal of structures from the highway – regardless whether they are owned or abandoned. Legislation requires the council to issue a notice. After a month the vehicle can be removed. Costs can be recovered from any identified owner.

Implementing the policy would cost an estimated £5,000 to £10,000 a year. Costs would be reduced where possible by charging owners for the return of trailers or by selling them.

Chair of the environment committee Cllr Gill Mitchell said: “It’s annoying for residents who have to buy parking permits and road tax to have their streets occupied by trailers which require neither. NMVs such as dilapidated caravans, burger vans or trailers bearing adverts can also make streets look an unloved mess.

“That’s why we had positive feedback on the proposal during consultation.”

For a council survey, 321 addresses in areas with many NMVs were sent a postcard asking for views and an online form was made available and publicised. 135 valid responses were received, via these or the council website. 109 (82 per cent) said they would support action being taken. Twenty (15 per cent) would not support it and four (three per cent) were unsure.

A report on the matter goes to the environment committee on June 28.

  1. Robert Reply

    Gill Mitchell should know better. Road tax is actually vehicle excise duty

  2. Ben Duncan Reply

    Will this equally apply to engineless vehicles that seem to clutter our parks and open spaces ?

  3. Isaac white Reply

    Final going to do something useful, about time

  4. bazza Reply

    what about all those vile vans and horse box vehicles that people are living in at surrenden road ,where local people pay a fortune in council tax.get rid of them from all our streets and roads.this city is looking more like a scene out of mad max.

  5. Matthew lewis fallow Reply

    My family and friends recently all chipped in to get me a caravan for my fortieth birthday. The gift they gave was of affordable holidays and adventures for my young family (2 year old boy and three month old baby girl). That gift was tainted today as a nieghbour apparently complained about the caravan, which is parked directly outside our terraced home, to the council and a lovely lady called Sarah was following up on that compliant. I can understand how in some circumstances some residents may have issues with other residents and thier choices however some residents have two or more cars or a car and work vehicle and I accept those choices. Why involve the council when my caravan is well maintianed, safely parked and upon consultation with our closest neighbours not a problem. A bigger issue maybe that we seem to geta lot of cars parked long term as we are not in a permit zone by people who live closer into town. Take time to consider others and maybe have a chat first before using the law especially when only a hundred odd brightonians seemed to respond to the consultation that I was not aware of in the slightest. I am awaiting my letter from Sarah and will be pursuing all polite avenues of response to ensure all parties are satisfied however if this is a further gentrification process I will not go quietly into the dark night.

  6. liz Reply

    The council have already slapped an orange ‘refuse disposal’ sticker on my vintage caravan. Its parked safely & legally – i use it every weekend in summer & pay for storage in another county in winter. It’s discrimination & frankly facist. Thousands of British people holiday in their caravans – always have. For others this is shelter, a home…

  7. bo Reply

    109 residents out 321!!! how on earth is that a majority… its a joke right!!! i understand there is problem with parking in some areas but having caravan in front of peoples homes, where its not in a way, for kids summer holidays will only bother sad bitter borring people who dont have better things to do in their lives then moan about anything and everything…

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