Unauthorised traveller encampment at Harlow Rugby Club

News / Wed 21st Feb 2024 at 04:36am

Statement from Harlow Council

LATE last night (20 February) an unauthorised traveller encampment set up at the Harlow Rugby Club car park. Harlow Council and the police were immediately informed and within hours, the encampment was issued a notice and has left the site. 

Commenting on the action, the Leader of Harlow Council, Councillor Dan Swords, said: “We were informed very late last night that an unauthorised traveller encampment had entered the Rugby Club car park. We took immediate, robust and decisive action alongside the police, which has resulted in the caravans and vehicles leaving the Rugby Club and the town.

“Thanks to the work of our Community Safety Team and Harlow Police, we were able to resolve this swiftly and safely and I have been in regular contact with the Rugby Club regarding the disruption this has caused the club.  

“We have an absolutely zero-tolerance approach to unauthorised traveller encampments, and that’s why we dealt with the situation swiftly and immediately working with the Police who used their powers to move the encampment on.

“The action we take will always be about upholding the law and protecting our green spaces, community facilities and the everyday lives of our residents and businesses.”


Update: The travellers have left the car park having been served with a police notice.

However, the rugby club will be closed for the rest of the day.

YH understands that an unauthorised traveller encampment has based itself at Harlow Rugby Club.

The encampment arrived late on Tuesday evening at the club car park off Howard Way in Harlow.

Harlow Council is aware and has been in touch with Essex Police.

More follows.

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24 Comments for Unauthorised traveller encampment at Harlow Rugby Club:

2024-02-21 05:22:41

Bloody outrageous. Get the First XV to kick them out. Disgusting, disrespectful people. The Police need to evict them without delay. We cannot have them in our town.

2024-02-21 09:50:29

Not the brightest place to camp knowing some of the members of Harlow Rugby Club.

The truth
2024-02-21 10:10:23

That’s racist they have the right to live there just like people entering the country illegally they have a right!!! I say give them hotels, phones and free food

2024-02-21 10:40:41

The truth, yes and free beer whilst they are watching the matches! All at the tax payers expense! Great idea!

2024-02-21 10:52:16

The Rugby club is one of the jewels of this town and our community. This is completely unacceptable. The police must enforce the law with full force and rigour. Travellers need to know they are unwelcome in Harlow and their criminal trespass will meet with zero tolerance. All credit to this Council for taking speedy and robust action.

Molly Buckle
2024-02-21 11:27:58

I hope the Police make them clear the rubbish and mess these travellers normally leave. How awful for members of the club and staff who work there having this. It is such a lovely club. I hope the police evict quickly and get them away from Harlow.

The truth
2024-02-21 11:28:27

We give terrorists homes but we can’t even give these a car park.

Mike Thioubeville
2024-02-21 11:40:11

It is the Rugby club car park not theirs. It is for club members and lawful visitors. It is a criminal trespass. Police have a duty to evict them. These people have no respect or dignity. We don't want them in Harlow.

Sam handley
2024-02-21 13:15:55

Must be a home game for Harlow this week then.

Sam handley
2024-02-21 13:19:09


2024-02-21 13:54:07

"Dropping litter is a criminal offence under Section 87 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. There are is no statutory defence in relation to there not being any nearby litter bins. The same applies to the disposal of bagged 'dog waste" Newham Council The Police can take action and fines up to £2500 for each offense. If considered flying tipping the penalty can be much higher.

Good shooting
2024-02-21 13:54:48

Bit early for grouse shooting , still could be good practice, what!

2024-02-21 13:56:33

No point asking the 1st team to push em off, they couldn't even push a scrum last week!

Matthew Kirkbride
2024-02-21 14:07:57

Interesting we hear nothing from Labour, the Lib Dems or Greens whenever we have illegal encampments in Harlow. They seem to always indulge these abusers and not stick up for Harlow residents. It's the same with London boroughs dumping their people in Harlow, never hear anything from those woke parties.

2024-02-21 18:43:21

Matthew Kirkbride Prove all the other parties indulge abusers ? I bet you can’t because it’s an unfounded lie.

2024-02-21 19:21:35

The truth , travellers don't pay their way , ie income tax , and council tax. So perhaps that's why they get no help. Don't bother the police , just leave to the members.

Matthew Kirkbride
2024-02-21 20:26:17

Rishy, the proof is evident. Just check when any of them have commented or condemned any illegal trespasses by travellers in Harlow over the last few years. Silence. There is your proof. Fortunately, the current council has supported Harlow residents and acted fast with the police.

Kim Oconnor
2024-02-22 09:41:59

Matthew Kirkbride, let me bring you up to speed, because clearly you don't always read comments from other party's. I've made my views very clear on travelling people on here. . We have had traveler's roaming our lands for centuries, if council s don't give them spaces to park, we will be getting unlawful pitch sites. Only way to stop this is to give them a site.. you should never put people in box's, we are all different, we seem to still have crime in this town,when travelling people are not around, so you should not put people in box's. .. green party member.

2024-02-22 13:05:03

Well Kim O'Connor, I am sure you and the Greens will get a lot of support (not) from members of the Rugby Club ! 🤣

2024-02-22 14:23:14

If they show up again, Police can step aside and give the rugby club members a free hand to deal with them! Don't think they will be back in a hurry after a stint in A&E!

2024-02-22 21:58:06

Kim o conner.. shouldn't we all just get given a patch a land to do as we please.. an no one wants to be put in boxes not just travellers.. but the rest don't have the option we have a stay where we are told to go.. Same as travellers can join a local council an housing list.. they choose to live apart from he rest of society then want sites handed to them.. go pay at the many camping sites around the country or rent land from somebody.. an they don't pay tax towards public services so why should they get access or help?

2024-02-22 23:46:17

Kim O'Connor, definitely got a few screws loose. Not all there. Vote for her!!! I would rather vote for a Big Mac! 😂

Kim Oconnor
2024-02-23 10:17:23

Dingle, and me, fake names ,, How would you solve the situation.??. There will all ways be travelling people, and have been for centuries, actually part of our history.. if towns and city's don't provide spaces for them, this will continue and continue.. . Costing more money in the long run.. It's a discussion, no need to be rude, we all entitled to an opinion... And just for the record vote for who ever you like.

2024-02-23 22:39:17

Listen to yourself. Your all so judgemental. What about the everyday joe blogs causing their neighbours hassle and making there lives hell. People stabbing others etc. Not one of you say we don't want them in our town. They moved on when given the notice so what's the issue. They did nothing wrong. There is nothing wrong with the traveler community. I agree with you Kim 100%

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