TRAVELLERS left mounds of rubbish on a village green in Widnes after setting up an illegal camp.

The group left Lovel Terrace in Halebank yesterday following police intervention.

More than a dozen caravans, cars and vans turned up at the site at around 4pm on Tuesday.

Residents reported criminal damage to fencing around the green and said the group were displaying “frightening” behaviour.

One eyewitness claimed a black car was continually “driving round doing wheelies and tearing up the grass”.

Another described the site as “like a holiday camp” while another resident said the situation was “beyond a joke.”

Images show a large convoy of caravans and broken fencing which residents say was caused by travellers illegally entering the green.

Halebank parish Cllr Kieran Reed who met with the travellers and Cheshire Police said the group was asked to move to a transit site in Runcorn but were refusing to do so.

Cllr Reed said: “We are working very closely with the  police and Halton Council  in order to remove the travellers to a much better facilitated site built specifically for travellers over on Warrington road in Runcorn.

"We will hopefully have the village green cleared and returned to its normal status.

“Travellers have to go somewhere and they are part of our community. If they get in touch with Halton council they have specific officers designated to talk to them.”

Halton council said an officer visited the illegal encampment with the police where there where 12 caravans and mobile homes on site, and confirmed they were not willing to move the transit site.

A council spokesman said: “The council’s transit site was offered to the travellers but they refused.  In a joint visit with the police, a formal notice was issued for the travellers to leave the site by 3pm.  If they fail to comply with the notice, then the police will issue S62 powers and arrange for them to be removed.”

The council has since confirmed that the travellers left the site quietly.

However a mountain bike, piles of rubbish and bin bags were left behind.