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Home / Latest News / Cardiff’s search for Gypsy and Traveller community pitches goes city wide

Cardiff’s search for Gypsy and Traveller community pitches goes city wide

More than 100 extra pitches are needed to accommodate Cardiff’s Gypsy and Traveller community which is expected to grow by 51% over the next 14 years, a new council study has found.

A previous study had suggested 194 pitches were needed up to 2018 and they should be provided within 2km of the existing camps in the capital’s south-east.

But Cardiff council’s cabinet member for planning boss Ralph Cook said the figure had been revised down and the authority had widened the search for new sites to the entire city.

The council currently manages two Gypsy and Traveller sites at Rover Way in Tremorfa and Shirenewton in Wentloog, which have a combined 80 pitches.

Consultants hired by the council attempted to interview every Gypsy and Traveller family in Cardiff to establish the demand for more pitches in the future.

Of those interviewed, 73% said they were either “very satisfied” or “fairly satisfied” with their site. Only 13% expressed dissatisfaction – almost all from Rover Way.

However, 86% said improvements were needed. These include dealing with dogs, site management, road surfaces, safety and pest control.

The Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Needs Study also found:

* 80% of respondents had lived in Cardiff for the past five years or more;

* 95% had not travelled in the past 12 months;

* 78% identified themselves as Romany Gypsy and 10% as Irish Traveller;

* 49% of all household members were aged 16 or under;

* 6% were working in a permanent job, 52% were looking after family, 17% were retired and 9% sick or disabled.

An extra 108 pitches are needed up to 2026, according to the study.

Proposed sites will be announced ahead of the publication of the deposit Local Development Plan (LDP) in September. A public consultation will follow.

Coun Cook said nowhere had been “ruled in or out” of consideration and sites would be assessed against a new set of criteria, such as access to services.

“The Gypsy/Traveller community and the sedentary community have co-existed in Cardiff for about 50 years with few issues. There is no reason at all that anyone should fear a site being proposed not far from where they live,” he said.

Councillor Judith Woodman, leader of the Liberal Democrat group, said Gypsy/Travellers had previously said they would want to live in the vicinity of the existing sites.

The new study also found there was a need for a transit site of about 10 pitches located near the M4. Cardiff wants to talk to neighbouring councils about whether they could accommodate it.

A separate study is looking at options for the future of the Rover Way site, which could include relocation. Residents have previously told WalesOnline they don’t want to move.


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