Decision Maker: Assistant Director - Property, Procurement & Commercial
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: No
1.Purpose of Decision Record
To record the decision for Kevin Fisher to take enforcement action under the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 in accordance with his delegated powers contained within the Council’s Constitution.
2.Background and Action to date
On Friday, 13th of October we were notified by Environmental Services Manager that caravans had parked on Coach Street Car Park, in Skipton. A site visit and welfare needs assessments have been carried out on the 17th of October by our Housing Team. This has established that there is no welfare needs.
Where a welfare need is present NYC’s policy states the following:
‘The County Council will seek to identify any relevant welfare needs of the site occupiers. Where needs are identified the County Council will try to assist or refer the matter to the relevant service or agency.
Where welfare needs are identified the case will be assessed on its own merits and any appropriate occupation period agreed. The situation will be monitored and the occupation period will be extended as the County Council deems necessary.’
Coach Street Car Park is an operational site. It is an unacceptable location and as such, in accordance with adopted policy, the occupiers will be served with notice to leave the site without delay to enable the operational service to resume.
The Council has a power under s77 Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to give a direction to leave land to people residing in vehicles, including caravans on land forming part of a highway, other unoccupied land or occupied land on which there are residing without the occupier’s consent.
The Council may give a direction that those persons and any others with them are to leave the land and remove the vehicles and any other property they have with them on the land.
If a person knowing that a direction under s77(1) has been given which applies to him –
(a)Fails, as soon as practicable, to leave the land or remove from the land any vehicle or other property which is the subject of the direction, or
(b)Having removed any such vehicle or property again enters the land with a vehicle within the period of 3 months being with the day on which the direction was given,
commits an officer and is liable upon summary conviction to a fine.
Then the Council may apply to the Magistrates Court for an order under S78 requiring the removal of any vehicle or other property which is present on the land and any persons residing in it.
A welfare needs assessment was conducted on 17th October 2023. Having regard to the Human Rights 1998 and Equality Act 2010 in particular in regard to the occupiers needs and welfare it would be proportionate when balancing individual needs against the wider public interest having regard to the unacceptable location of the unauthorised encampment to serve a direction under s77 for the removal of the vehicle(s) and person(s) from the site. Given that the location is unacceptable, relevant authorities are aware of the welfare needs on site and an appropriate occupation period has been afforded to the families, it is now in line with the Authorities Policy to serve notice without delay.
Failure to have the ability to open the Park and Ride site could create reputational damage to the Authority and have an impact on the wider tourist economy of the local area.
Therefore, we authorise Kevin Fisher for action to be taken under Sections 77 and 78 Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to secure the removal of those vehicles or other property and any persons residing in it from Coach Street Car Park, Skipton site in order to prevent trespass and protect the Council’s interests and enable the Council to continue to carry out its functions on the site.
To ensure service delivery can resume at Coach
Street following occupation of part of the site by an unauthorised
Publication date: 25/10/2023
Date of decision: 24/10/2023