Other parishes should open sites for campervans, says Constable

Other parishes should open sites for campervans, says Constable

Tomorrow evening, a meeting is being held at St Peter’s parish hall where it is hoped members of the community of campervan owners that uses Le Port and other users of the site can resolve their differences.

Around 80 people are understood to be attending the private meeting, including members of the Jersey Camping and Caravan Association.

Infrastructure Minister Kevin Lewis recently imposed restrictions on Le Port, converting the area into a car park where vehicles can only stay for 12 in 24 hours, in an attempt to curb usage of the site by motorhome owners.

The move came at the request of parish Constable Richard Vibert, who received a number of complaints about anti-social behaviour in the area last summer.

Paul Hymas, a spokesman for the Le Port campervan community, said he hopes this week’s meeting can help highlight issues and establish a set of ‘ground rules’ so users can self-police the site.

‘I spoke to the Constable last week and there are many more things that we agree on than disagree on,’ he said.

‘We agree that there are issues with safety and using the sand dunes as toilets. Some people have also raised concerns about anti-social behaviour and we want to address that.

‘We have to work together with everyone who uses the area and hopefully we can establish some ground rules, so that there is no further behaviour that people feel is antisocial.’

He added: ‘Some people have also said that they feel intimidated in the area and we want to understand why they feel like that, because we don’t want people to be intimidated.’

Next month the States are due to debate a proposition lodged by Senator Steve Pallett calling for the restrictions at Le Port to be lifted but tighter regulations to be imposed on campervan usage at the site.

He has also proposed that more designated and regulated areas should be opened around the Island, with licensed vehicles restricted to staying at a site for no more than 24 hours in any seven-day period.

Mr Vibert said that the Senator’s proposals were similar to those already put forward by the Jersey Camping and Caravan Association.

He added that he supported the idea of better regulation and more sites being opened across the Island, as this would take pressure off Le Port and his parish officers.

‘The parish doesn’t even own this site, yet we gradually became expected to police it,’ he said.

‘It belongs to the States and it should really be environmental officers and planning officers who are enforcing the legalities.’

He added: ‘We don’t want to stop people from doing something that they enjoy but we need the right regulations and that may involve a permit system being put in place.

‘Also vehicles should have the right facilities. I would like to see other areas opened around the Island so it is not just in St Peter, where it has become overcrowded and is becoming dangerous.

‘We need to discuss this with all the different people who use the area at the meeting. We will hear everybody’s views and bring those groups together to find a way forward.’

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