ILLEGAL gypsy and traveller encampments at two town centre parks will now be given just eight hours to leave before police are brought in to remove them.
The fast-track removal of encampments at Penny Pie Park and Keresforth / Broadway playing fields was approved by Barnsley Council this month.
Prior to this, the sites had to be assessed, welfare checks carried out and a meeting held between the council and the police before action could be taken to remove them - which could take up to ten days.
However, immediate action can now be taken as the two sites have been designated as 'special sites' by the council.
This is because Penny Pie Park, Pogmoor, must be kept clear as the landing point for an emergency rescue helicopter and Keresforth / Broadway playing fields adjoin a unit for people with profound learning difficulties and there are concerns over keeping them safe from harm and abuse.
Gypsy travellers set up at Keresforth / Broadway playing fields three times and once at Penny Pie Park in 2013/14.