Code of conduct for caravan occupiers

This Code is issued to caravan occupiers and applies in all circumstances regardless of the decisions to tolerate or seek eviction from an unauthorised encampment. Non-compliance with this Code will be used in evidence in any action for eviction from the land. Non-compliance with the Code at a tolerated site is likely to lead to the commencement of eviction proceedings.

Caravan occupiers must:

  1. keep caravan groups small, normally not to exceed six caravans at any one time
  2. not create a road hazard or any health and safety hazard
  3. not dump waste and provide evidence, upon the request of authorised Council Officer, that satisfactory provision has been made for all waste, including human waste
  4. not burn rubbish that gives off toxic fumes, or cause any form of nuisance to neighbours or passers by
  5. park vehicles safely and in accordance with the law
  6. not damage fixtures, fittings, trees or hedges
  7. keep the site clean
  8. not threaten or use intimidatory behaviour towards Council employees, other agencies, local residents or other members of the public
  9. keep all animals under proper control
  10. not occupy the same land again for at least another 12 months
  11. once occupation has ceased, move at least 2 miles radius from the site occupied
  12. not engage in any form of criminal activity or anti social behaviour
  13. report incidents of unlawful dumping in the vicinity
  14. identify a spokesperson (with deputy) to represent the group, if requested by an authorised Council Officer

Camp locations that will not be tolerated:

  1. a park, public open space in regular use, public playing fields, sports and recreation ground
  2. a village green or other open area within a residential area
  3. public car parking facilities at a hospital, school, supermarket or leisure facility
  4. an industrial estate, retail park or business park (this includes a site under development)
  5. a site where pollution from vehicles or dumping could damage ground water or watercourses
  6. a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) where an encampment endangers a sensitive environment or wildlife.
  7. a public highway or designated highway land
  8. a location where there is, or is likely to be, a significant risk of harm to the health or safety of the caravan occupants (for example: a derelict area with toxic waste or other serious ground pollution; the verge of a busy road where fast traffic is a danger to occupants children)

Criteria applied when considering the need to evict:

  1. compliance with the code of conduct
  2. unacceptable antisocial behaviour has occurred
  3. environmental impact.
  4. camp location is not tolerated
  5. the welfare and social needs of the caravan occupiers
  6. no toilet, washing or drinking water supply available at the location
  7. the availability of authorised caravan pitches in the Tees Valley/Durham County/North Yorkshire
  8. Human Rights and Race Relations legislation
  9. complaints from nearby occupiers and the extent to which they are judged to be reasonable and justified
  10. the degree to which a lawful tenant or occupier cannot use the land as intended.
  11. the degree to which the occupation, on prolonged occupation, is detrimental to the interests of the public
  12. the financial costs incurred by the Council in the short and long term and any affected land owners and people having a legal right to occupy the land

Information on unauthorised encampments