Travellers site to become permanent for Seamer Horse Fair despite objections

Scarborough Council is set to allocate a field just outside the town as a permanent home for an annual travellers horse fair.

Monday, 8th April 2019, 12:43 pm
Updated Monday, 8th April 2019, 12:49 pm
For the last nine years, the fair has been held in a fieldoff the B1261 between Seamer and Crossgates

The Seamer Horse Fair has origins which date back to a Royal Charter issued in November 1382 by Richard II.

However, it was not until the 1900s that the fair became associated with travellers.

For the last nine years, the fair has been held in a field off the B1261 between Seamer and Crossgates and the number of those attending the fair has fallen sharply.

Previously, travellers had been known set up camp on parcels of land around the area which had led to conflict with residents of the village.

The council has planning permission to use the site to house the travellers but the planning application granted in 2015 specified that it would be re-examined after three years.

Scarborough Council has applied to use the site on a “continuing” basis and, on Thursday, the authority’s planning committee will be asked to approve the change.

The planning application submitted shows the decline in the numbers of people attending the fair.

At its peak, more than 230 travellers set up their homes on the field but this year that number dropped to just 55.

One person who lives near to the horse fair site has written to the planning committee, urging it to refuse the application.

In their submission, they state: “Over the nine years of having to endure this event we have experienced many problems and suffered harm to our residential amenity.

“These include breaking into our grounds, trespass, damaging fences, hedgerows and trees, theft from our property, excrement being thrown over our hedge, defecating and urinating on our property, rubbish thrown into our property.

“The erection of two-metre high Heras fencing around our boundaries has mitigated the instance of trespass and criminal damage but does significantly impact on our residential amenity as we are forced to live behind a steel cage with restricted access to our paddock.

“It also serves as a continual reminder of the event. We are unable to relax at home during this event and must always remain vigilant. We must stress that without the Heras fencing the situation was intolerable.”