Kiveton: More than 1,000 say ‘no’ to traveller site

Inside the RMBC depot on Dog Kennel Hill earmarked to become a Gypsy and traveller site
Inside the RMBC depot on Dog Kennel Hill earmarked to become a Gypsy and traveller site

Formal objections from 1,354 local people have been handed to Rotherham Council, opposing a potential Gypsy camp on Dog Kennel Hill near Kiveton.

People from Dinnington, Anston, Kiveton, Wales, Todwick, Harthill and Thorpe Salvin are among those who have written to the authority.

Their responses were taken to the Town Hall on Friday before the 10 week consultation period ended.

The council’s Local Plan for future development across the borough shows how housing and employment land could be shaped over the next 15 years.

And a site for Gypsies and travellers is earmarked between Kiveton and South Anston.

It is proposed the former quarry, currently a Rotherham Council Streepride depot, could host 10 pitches or 20 to 30 caravans.

Kiveton Park Station Action Group has done research into the site, its heritage and suitability as a residential space.

A spokesman said objections had focused on beliefs that the proposals contravene green belt planning regulations and fail to consider more appropriate uses of the site.

They have suggested alternatives like much-needed car parking for the adjacent railway station and recreational activities along the Chesterfield Canal.

The quarry site, which forms the footprint of the proposed traveller site, is famous for supplying the stone that built the Houses of Parliament and is of historic interest.

The action group also claims Gypsies and travellers would be discriminated against if the proposal went ahead because they say the site is unfit for human habitation.

Local councillors, Rother Valley MP Kevin Barron and members of the travelling community have all pledged their support for the campaign.

“Hopefully the council will see validity of our arguments and look elsewhere for the right site in the right location, because this certainly isn’t it,” said action group spokesman Simon Bunker.