WORK to keep unwanted travellers from occupying a public space has been welcomed.

Flintshire Council has started putting in place barriers at Buckley Common to ensure there is no repeat of this summer, when the authority had to apply for a court order to remove gipsies from the site.

While the travellers occupied the site, there were reported clashes with residents and the council also had to fork out for portable toilets.

The work now being carried out includes a huge trench similar to that of Offa’s Dyke, around the circumference of
the park.

Park furniture will be rearranged to block access from Liverpool Road and Higher Common Road, while decorative carved stones, high barriers, and removable bollards are also expected to feature as part of the measures to keep travellers from the space.

Observing the ongoing work, Chris Blackwell, walking his dog Dulcie, said: “I walk my dog on the common pretty much everyday and I think this trench is a great idea.

“I can’t understand why it hasn’t been done sooner because we’ve had a lot of problems in the past.

“We’re spoilt to have such a decent sized common on our doorsteps and a lot of people use it.”

The Mayor of Buckley, Pentrobin councillor Dennis Hutchinson, said he was delighted to see the work start.

“I think it’s fantastic”, he said.

“They have started on schedule and it’s going well. I know it’s only early days and it is a big job for them to complete but I am quite pleased and satisfied so far.

“We’ll be keeping a watchful eye on it but this is what the public wanted.

“There was a consultation which was very well-attended not only by residents who live near the common but from further afield by other people who use it such as dog walkers.

“What is happening now came out of the interest shown then, so I’m pleased to see progress being made.”

Pictures and video by Geoff Abbott