A TEMPORARY stop site is being set up in Taunton for the traveling community passing through Somerset.
The facility will be set up at the Enfield car park in Tangier from 6 July. It will probably remain open until October.
Throughout the pandemic, communities of travelers, Gypsies and Roma have struggled to access clean water and comply with government rules on social distance, self-isolation and travel restrictions.
A multi-agency group has been formed in Somerset to ensure a county-wide response to these concerns. This group is represented by the Avon and Somerset police, the Somerset City Council, Devon and the Somerset Fire and Rescue, the Mendip District Council, the Somerset NHS Clinical Commissioning Team, the Sedgemoor District Council. , the Somerset County Council, Somerset West and the Taunton District Council and the South Somerset District Council.
The team took into account the national guidelines and recommendations established by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) to ensure that all parts of society are kept safe during this period.
The council says that anyone who arrives in Somerset or has already stopped here will have a safe place to stay.
This could mean welcoming people where they stopped by providing basic sanitation and support to join the national guide or move to one of the temporary sites in direct response to the pandemic that is taking place around Somerset.
The car park will not be used as a public car park while the property is in operation.
The temporary shutdown facility will provide access to clean water and sanitation. Household waste will be collected daily. There will be controlled access to the site. There are other similar provisions elsewhere within the county.
A spokesman for Somerset West and the Taunton Council said: “It is important to emphasize that it is a public health response to the Covid-19 pandemic and that the health of all who are currently in Somerset is paramount, be the communities traveling or living in established communities and to avoid preventable deaths.
“As national restrictions are relaxed, we are committed to working with people within the Gypsy communities, travelers or Roma to ensure that they are able to move forward safely under national guidance. In the meantime, all the agencies involved will provide support to anyone currently traveling through Somerset and the communities around them. ”
In June SWT instituted temporary measures at the Blackbrook Leisure Center to dissuade travelers from going to the site.
But the boulders were moved aside to allow the caravans to pass.
The council said it would work towards a more permanent solution.