NEW Government proposals to enforce tougher measures on illegal traveller sites have been welcomed by a Wirral councillor.

Announced on February 7, as part of amendments to the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994, the Home Office set out draft measures in a bid to make it easier for police officers to intervene and remove travellers from land they are not permitted to be on.

The Home Office is also considering to make it an offence to set up camps, which is currently defined in law as trespassing.

It is also believed that the Government would provide authorities across the UK with practical and financial support to handle unauthorised encampments.

Greasby, Frankby and Irby ward Cllr David Burgess-Joyce told the Globe: "Communities across Wirral, most recently Greasby and Wallasey, have suffered from the effects of these illegal camps.

“It’s right that the law is changed and that the police, and local councils, are given the powers to end these sites from springing up.”

The Home Office will launch a review into whether it should criminalise the act of trespassing when setting up an encampment.

Proposals from the Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government will consult on proposals to; lower the number of vehicles needed to be involved in a legal camp, give police powers to direct travellers to sites in neighbouring authorities and increase the time during which travellers are not allowed to return to a site that they have already been removed from.