Different groups of Travellers have visited Muddies near St. Nicholas Lane in Laindon over the years – the site has been used as a stopping off point by them for some considerable time. Some have kept the area tidy and bagged up their rubbish ready for collection by Basildon Council before moving on – because of their regular use, they’ve generally treated the place with a bit of respect. Muddies is now no longer a community asset, it’s a building site. Basildon Council and developers Redrow have trashed a lovely natural space and children’s playground, for profit. Travellers can no longer use the space, nor can the local children.
A group of Travellers moved on to a field surrounded by trees across the road from Muddies, fly tipped loads of rubbish in the area and then moved on. This is a sad reflection on their lack of respect for a beautiful space and for themselves. It’s also a reflection of the problems caused by the hike in the cost of using legal tips and recycling which has lead to a rise in fly tipping. Now instead of having a proper public service for the control of rubbish we have privatised companies offering the cheapest service which is run as if the main aim was to leave rubbish lying around and limit the use of recycling centres and to make money partly by fining people who carry out cleaning work for their communities.
On housing estates, as we’ve written previously: Show some pride and have some respect for your neighbours! – https://southessexstirrer.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/show-some-pride-and-have-some-respect-for-your-neighbours/ it only takes a minority of dysfunctional households to drag a neighbourhood down. It’s the same with Travellers – it only takes a minority to tarnish the reputation of the whole community. A situation exacerbated by Basildon Council and the Echo newspaper demonising Gypsies and Travellers which encourages the racist few longing for an excuse to find a group of people to pick on and feel superior to.
Fly tipping is a rotten, antisocial thing to do. The rabid racists who jump on the bandwagon to make racist remarks on social media such as “bomb them” and “disgusting animals” are also guilty of spreading filth. Gypsies and Travellers are one of the few last groups not yet properly defended from racist abuse. Many deny them being an ethnic group at the same time as being happy to discriminate against all of them on the basis of the actions of a few.
When we condemn the rogue elements living in our estates for their actions, we do so on the basis that the majority of people treat their neighbourhood and each other with due respect. We’re not being censorious curtain twitchers when we do this – it’s because we recognise that these elements are bad for community morale and solidarity.
It’s with this in mind that we condemn the Travellers who turned up and decided to treat St. Nicholas Lane as their own personal rubbish tip with total disregard for residents in the area and their fellow Travellers who do treat the sites they visit with due respect. This group must have been aware of the grief that the Travelling community gets yet they took a course of action which will ensure that the hate and persecution are cranked up to an even higher level. Basically, whoever is responsible for this flytipping has stabbed their fellow Travellers in the back, and the non Traveller racists and haters make all of us non Travellers look bad. We all need to look after one another and care for the environment we live in and are dependent on.