Travellers fail to stop 'tea and tidy up' at popular Northampton park

Some of the volunteers helping to clear up Becket's Park
Some of the volunteers helping to clear up Becket's Park
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Travellers pitching up on a popular park in Northampton almost put paid to a 'tidy up and tea' event, organisers have said.

Buddies of Beckets (BOB) had organised the event for Sunday July 16 as part of the National Love Parks Week activities. The group looks after Beckets Park in Northampton.

The event was organised by Buddies of Beckets

The event was organised by Buddies of Beckets

Nick Stephens, chairman of BOB, said: "Last week the event was in doubt as a large group of travellers drove into the park and took over the main field with vehicles and caravans.

"Fortunately, they did not stay long and the borough council acted quickly to clear the litter and debris after they had left. I believe measures will be taken by the council to ensure vehicles cannot be driven on to that field again.

"The 'tidy up and tea' event went ahead and it was really great to see so many new faces who volunteered to come out and help.

"The park is looking so much better in many places now but there is still quite a bit to do. After the hard work we treated all the volunteers to refreshments and made it into a social occasion. It would have been very difficult to have held the event had the travellers not left," he added.

Some of the rubbish bags collected by the volunteers

Some of the rubbish bags collected by the volunteers

About 25 volunteers helped out weeding and tidying the park. Cake and tea were provided and music was played by violinist Andrew Rackham.

Photographer Matthew Toresen took lots of black and white photographic portraits which will contribute to part of the exhibition about the Park planned for the future.

Luisa Jepson, Beckets Park co-ordinator, added: "It was clear everyone that came to our event loves Beckets Park and we had a photographer on hand to capture images of the volunteers and to hear what made the Park special to them. The photos and stories will be used in our exhibition planned later this year."

The next big event is the Mela@Beckets Park which will be an afternoon of free entertainment on Sunday July 30.

There will be dozens of performers there to entertain the crowd with dance and music.