Right to Roam

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UKHippy is a long running online community and of likeminded people exploring all interpretations on what it means to be living an alternative lifestyle -- we welcome discussions on everything related to sustainability, the environment, alternative spirituality, music, festivals, politics and more -- membership of this website is free but supported by the community.

  • The irish trash will kick the arse out of it and the decision could then get reversed as some of them just spoil it for all.


    Just wondering if there's a case for discrimination should I camp on public land as in my view I am entitled to be treated the same as they are no better or worse than me.............

  • I had always supported the cause for non discrimination when it came to travellers until a family moved in to an apartment on our very small street. Something to do with getting their kids registered. Anyway we all have a bit of ground outside at the back of the properties which is if not well, adequately maintained. These people dumped all their house hold rubbish outside, brought various vans, caravans and cars to be repaired or just abandonned along with the people required to do the jobs. They parked up blocking access to garages and houses and the list goes on. So I know that, as Wulfie said, it is a minority but unfortunately when personally affected it is very easy to tar all with the same brush.

  • Define traveller in the eyes of the law. You cant say its ok for one kind of traveller to legitimately roam while making it illegal for another traveller who lives the same lifestyle without creating discrimination.

    Anyone who moves about from place to place and lives permanently in a mobile abode is a traveller regardless of their nationality.If this law is good enough for one group its good enough for all.


    The biggest problem is yet to come with the proposed changes to permissable occupation of,or trespass on to private property.

  • interesting development but as with all these liberties, “the proof is in the pudding.” Proving ethnic status with documentation/historical records/statements/photographs and not forgetting strong support from the National Gypsy Council as mentioned and solicitors acting on their behalf. I don’t know how credible it is to falsify personal race/ethnicity in order to skirt the law.
    One day Hippy/travellers may become classed as ethnic/nomadic minority, until then, its do what you do best.

  • How perfect life would be if us hard working, environmentally friendly ,peace loving, slightly crusty, well meaning,very polite,law abiding,,animal owning, downright beautiful,British hippies could belong to something like the gypsy council, but that's just a dream some of us have!

  • Well that's not going to happen because theyre just as discriminatory as the British general public is to them.

    Im not really sure a representative organisation for us would work to our advantage anyway as so many mobile dwellers dont do it full time all their lives,most are either part timers or drift in and out of it according to circumstances,availability of accommodation or work.

    Most likely it would make the government more aware of how many of us there are,decide we are a probkem and motivate them to do something about us AKA get rid of us. They already try to do that to Gypsy Roma Travellers but they open themselves to being accused of racist.

  • Well that's not going to happen because theyre just as discriminatory as the British general public is to them.

    The Showmans Guild is just as clicky. If the state hadn’t clamped down on the newage traveller movement. It could have already become a ugly world for travellers of every orientation here in the U.K.. Just imagine the confrontation and subsequent public revolt/discussed. Not only would the numbers be great, EU immigration/migration would burst the bubble and put us all under the spotlight.
    Hand on heart. Travelling horsedrawn in the late 1980’s Every other village I went through, some local would acknowledge me, offer a park up place or advice, eggs, bones for my dogs, scrap metal or leave a pint behind the bar n the upcoming pub, after telling me to ”be kind to the horse”

    They saw my method of travel as nostalgic. However the number of times I travelled through Council housing estates to find gangs of kids throwing stones at us, my horse and wagon was on par with all the courtesy I received travelling out in the countryside.

  • To be honest most 'representative' organisations have their prejudices and agendas and power struggles. The main reason im against most pressure groups and especially against clubs and societies.


    I dont see myself remotely as a gypsy traveller nor would i think they see anything in common with any of us.

    I dont see myself as a hippy either even though there are some bohemian aspects of hippy/ alternative /nomadic culture i may identify with but plenty of other things i dont like or that would put me at odds with it.

    I certainly dont want anyone representing my interests for me,formally or otherwise. I can do that perfectly fine on my own.

    In my experience any kind of formal group or association inevitably leads to internal power struggles and self serving individuals pushing their own interests and dont fit my libertarian beliefs.


    It doesn't matter what walk of life you come from or exist in,youll find prejudice discrimination,envy, spite or if youre lucky some commonly shared motivations and mutually beneficial interest and peace.


    Its far easier (even if motivation is outwardly selfish ) to find your own niche in which to live,relatively unbothered by ' others ' than it is having attached a 'belonging' label to oneself and banding together. Banding together may offer strength and familiarity but it also leads to dependency and attracts unwelcome attention.

    I dont need or want that kind of communal lifestyle.I like the way i live and I dont want to see more and more folks enticed into our way of life spoiling it,nor do i want us having a representative body to fight our cause.

  • I'm alright Jack and fuck everyone else, sorry dont agree with your paranoia and views on this subject NRT. We have our contacts and lifestyle sorted, why do you want this way of life to be so inclusive?. I welcome all new travellers/ van dwellers with open arms , we dont have to fear them, they are not the enemy and we were new once too!!

  • The showmans guild and Gypsy council are the only two organisations for travellers that have the clout to lobby governemnt. When the Irish travellers gained official ethnic minority status a few years back the Gypsy council were adamant for that to happen new age travellers were not to be included asnd that went through and NAT's were left out of the equasion so any subsequentlaw etc willl not be inclisive of all as we are not an officially recognised ethnic minority. Do I care, no, I live my life how I choose regardless. The new court case ruling states Gypsies and travellers have an enshrined right, I do think that means the officially recognised sectors and as NAT's are not officially recognised minority, encampments on public places doesnt include us. So imagine if a load of NAT vehicles rocked up on a village common or supermarket carpark, we wouldnt last long. It also says it is now down to the governemnt to provide more adequate sites, bet your bottom dollar we wont be getting any.

  • True Boris we were all new once & I too always extend a friendly welcome to anyone with a van. Doesn't mean I would be ok advertising the lifestyle nationwide to all comers. Too many people seem to see a thing on the internet & jump on it without any real conviction, serving only to highlight the lifestyle to the wrong people....

  • I'm alright Jack and fuck everyone else, sorry dont agree with your paranoia and views on this subject NRT. We have our contacts and lifestyle sorted, why do you want this way of life to be so inclusive?. I welcome all new travellers/ van dwellers with open arms , we dont have to fear them, they are not the enemy and we were new once too!!

    You can call it what you like i dont actually give a fuck. I call it an interest in preserving our right to roam and live independently of the system as much as is reasonably possible without attracting the heavy jackboot of the establishment trying to curtail it.

    There are thousands of folk living how we do and thats not inclusive or exclusive, but attracting more and more into a lifestyle which for most will be a just a cool hobby will inevitably put pressure on everyone through lack of suitable parkups and attracting the unwarranted attention of law enforcement and repeatedly being told to move on or ending up charged for trespass or obstruction of the highway.


    If this was a country the size of the US thered be room for anyone who chose to to live a mobile life and even over there they get harrassed by authorities, so what chance do you think youll have of living how you love if 10 thousand or more new van dwellers hit the roads. I could guarantee youd be first on here moaning about having been repeatedly moved on or kicked off your farm stays and unfairly targeted by police oor local residents.


    I compared it to the menace of tourism because it would be a menace. We already see National Parks banning overnight parking in areas that have been used for decades because those parkups have been overehelmed by urban shitheads turning them into their own personal drug and drink fuelled camp,terrorising locals and running illegal roadraces and them dumping all their trash,shit,condoms etc etc for someone else to clear up. Unsurprisingly everyone is now banned.


    Not so very many years ago i regularly went travelling around the north of Scotland and rarely passed anyone in the remote highland routes. Now we have the NC500 a globally popular tourist route and you can struggle to travel any section of it without repeatedly encountering hikers cyclists campers motorbikers etc and the attraction of the route -its isolation and remoteness,the real wilderness factor - has gone. Its only going to get worse as it develops as a major tourist draw.


    Humans always fuck things up and id rather they didnt get much of a chance to fuck up the way we live...but inevitably they will.


    A lot of the twats on youtube and the like who are busy making attractive content to make living in vans look uber cool are making videos to make money, most of them dont give a fuck about the lifestyle nor want to do it fulltime,nor do they care about the social implications of thousands of extra van dwellers crowding onto the roads. When theyre bored and youtube gets saturated with van conversion channels theyll move onto something else to make videos about.


    If you think im paranoid and selfish wanting to preserve our lifestyle ill live with that.

  • There’s a great number of good souls, not taking advantage of a semi nomadic lifestyle, that would complement our community and even better, become ambassadors for nomadic/van dwelling lifestyles. Unfortunately just visiting a few campsite throughout the year, gives us a sample of the varied folk likely to be in the mix in the real world. Most of then I wouldn’t want living on my council estate with me.
    10 years ago it was suggested on here we post our park-ups thread etc. Many of us shared our concern about these places being hijacked by weekend tourists and hangouts for drug use sessions. We expressed our fear that any site that became popular would probably become closed off perminantly to prevent further use. So the park-up thread didn’t materialise. Word spreads and like our friends, we keep these park-ups close.


    20 years ago, I guess you could say back then I was paranoid. Although sadly this lifestyle didn’t explode with hippy chicks and mobile drug dealers, cool dudes, well wishers and free thinkers. It did become more variable and diverse. With an increase in those “I pay no rent and my giro is spent crews.” However paranoid or not, many of the traditional or potential parkups were eventually closed off by local authorities as a deterrent to prevent future use and problems, mainly from the Gypsy communities.

  • Changes proposed by Government to criminalise trespass and setting up unauthorised encampment should concern us all. Particularly prohibiting return for 12 months,reducing the number of vehicles deemed encampment to 2 and police having the power to remove trespassers from any land that forms part of the highway which will further make wildcamping illegal.


    Gov link


    • amending section 62A of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to permit the police to direct trespassers to suitable authorised sites located in neighbouring local authority areas
    • amending sections 61 and 62A of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to increase the period of time in which trespassers directed from land would be unable to return from 3 months to 12 months
    • amending section 61 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to lower the number of vehicles needing to be involved in an unauthorised encampment before police powers can be exercised from six to two or more vehicles
    • amending section 61 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to enable the police to remove trespassers from land that forms part of the highway
  • Changes proposed by Government to criminalise trespass and setting up unauthorised encampment should concern us all. Particularly prohibiting return for 12 months,reducing the number of vehicles deemed encampment to 2 and police having the power to remove trespassers from any land that forms part of the highway which will further make wildcamping illegal.


    Gov link


    • amending section 62A of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to permit the police to direct trespassers to suitable authorised sites located in neighbouring local authority areas
    • amending sections 61 and 62A of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to increase the period of time in which trespassers directed from land would be unable to return from 3 months to 12 months
    • amending section 61 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to lower the number of vehicles needing to be involved in an unauthorised encampment before police powers can be exercised from six to two or more vehicles
    • amending section 61 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to enable the police to remove trespassers from land that forms part of the highway

    Fuck, At least there's no power whatsoever to stop me parking in laybys or on the verge as long as my box is legal. I'd prefer further off the road but in reality there's a shortage of police to shift peeps off commons unless one's being a twunt and drawing attention sooo you're most likely to be left alone IF you're sensible.

  • Im wondering what the future is for being horsedrawn if this enablement of police to clear highways land. The few who hang on to that tradition rely on the highway verges to overnight.


    What will police deem as encampment if it suits them? What if you happen to be parked close to another living van? Do you get deemed an illegal encampment?


    I suspect how the powers are used will largely depend on area and the attitude of local residents and how much they perceive nomads as a threat.


    It just seems more than a coincidence these powers are being considered at a time ehen there are more and more folks taking to living in vehicles and homelessness is becoming more of a visible problem to the Conservative electorate.

  • Horsedrawn will never have a problem. Fck me on reading that word as I still have that hankering to go that way but too many muppets are taking to the road which'll draw attention before long and affect all. New Year I looked to stop at the Sanctury but it was overloaded with cnts. Just a big red flag and quite right that they should be fckd over for the twats that they were. I moved back to the Barge for a night passing empty parkups on verges enroute and as stands had a free night apart from a welcome meal.


    Cristmas before was shared with one guy, tranny travels on boobtube, two peeps and low profile. One regular had already moved off due to too many being there before me when a number had moved on then gone.


    A big stick is coming when too many gather in one spot so commonsense must prevail. One night and move on.

  • I'm just not seeing this explosion in Van's on my travels, maybe it's just the popular areas? As been stated, to stop peeps parking anywhere sensible for a nite or two will be almost impossible to clampdown on,the van being tidy and legal helps of course.

    And yes NRT I get pissed off now!, when I occasionally get the knock and asked to move but that's all part of vanlife it's not going to stop me and neither are these new stupid amendments.

  • Look whats happened to transient boat dwellers who have / had continuous cruising as their means of living on the canals living and moving nomadically. Due to the popularity of the tourist trade and boat hire and gentrification of the canals where it's become a status amongst rich yaughty and bohemian artists and muso's and retiree's who have cashed it all in and bought a 70 grand narrow boat. Boat travellers have all but lost the fight, they have been regulated and taxed to shit. With the rise in this modern day it's cool to have a 25 - 50 grand all singing all dancing van life, maybe there will be similar regulation like whats happened on the waterways, the equivalent of mooring fees at official stopping places, like the caravan and camping club thing. Who would want to see popular wild camping sites turn into mini visitor centres or a wild camping version of the caravan and camping club, little rowed up plots, a little jumped up warden with an official cap and badge etc etc, erm no not me. As there is an influx where more and more folk are pissed off with standard issue house living and going for van life which there is, it wont go unnoticed, and when things like this are picked up on the radar, the next step is regulation and more laws making it even harder for those who do not want a caravan and camping club style of doing it, like whats happened on the canals. Maybe in time of anyone buys a ready done van or converts and registers a self build, when you go for insurance you are forced to show a membership of the caravan and camping club like gas saferty certs.

    Due to what is mainly how the Irish travel and park up it has peaked on the radar and the authorities aint wearing it, just like they didnt wear the NAT convoy's and large groups that set up encampments. This recent court case that many see as a win isnt going to mean a licenced free for all for officially recognised ethnic minorities. As it said in the summary, it has highlighted a need to push the government for more sites where we wont be welcome.

  • Points taken Wiz but to be honest how many members of this site actually live on the road here and now?, not many of us me thinks ! I just dont buy into this new massive wave of peeps living on the road,we know it's no walk in the park and many will not last their 1st winter, so dont get too worried.