Club shuts its doors after illegal encampment spotted

Ely Tigers Rugby Club spotted the encampment on one of its Downham Road pitches

Ely Tigers Rugby Club have urged people not to head to its Downham Road ground after a group of caravans were spotted on one of its pitches. - Credit: Facebook/Ely Tigers Rugby Club

A rugby club is urging people not to attend after a group of caravans were spotted within the ground. 

Ely Tigers Rugby Club have stated that “no one should head to the club until the current situation is sorted and our guests have left”. 

The message comes after the illegal encampment was spotted on one of the club’s pitches at its Downham Road home yesterday (Tuesday). 

As a result, Ely Tigers, who are working with Cambridgeshire police and East Cambridgeshire District Council, have cancelled all sessions at the ground until further notice. 

Chris Day, chairman of Ely Tigers, said: “I would like to add a huge thanks to Emma Gunbie, Julia Gilbert and Richard Ord from the rugby club and Ely Outdoor Sports Association. 

“They have been working hard to talk to the relevant organisations and facilitate the eventual moving on of the encampment.” 

Mr Day said there are around 15 caravans occupying the pitch, and although bailiffs have been called, it is uncertain when the encampment will be moved on. 

Last week, an encampment was moved on from Waterbeach Recreation Ground before caravans were later found in nearby Stretham

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It is thought the caravans at Ely Tigers are the same group that were previously in Waterbeach and Stretham. 

SE Cambs MP Lucy Frazer said she received calls from residents relating to the Waterbeach encampment, and has welcomed new laws to increase police powers dealing with unauthorised encampments