Improving Gypsy/Traveller sites: guidance on minimum sites standards and site tenants' core rights and responsibilities
Covers minimum standards for Gypsy Traveller sites and core rights and responsibilities for those renting pitches on local authority and RSL sites.
Annex B - Core Rights and Responsibilities for Gypsy/Traveller Site Tenants
- The site provider must treat you fairly and must not unlawfully discriminate against you.
Amenity Block standards
- The site provider will keep in good repair the structure and exterior of the amenity block, so it is wind and watertight.
- The site provider will keep in repair and proper working
order any facilities in the amenity block provided by the site
- the supply of water, gas, and electricity;
- sanitation (for example sinks, baths, showers, toilet);
- hot water heating;
- space heating (for example central heating).
- There will be an annual inspection of any gas supply, and a 5 yearly electricity inspection.
- The site provider will carry out repairs and other work necessary to keep the amenity block and hard standing area of your pitch at a reasonable standard.
- Repairs will be carried out within the timescales set locally for repairs for social housing tenants. The site provider must tell you what these timescales are and how to report a repair.
- The site provider must include you in any consultation on repair timescales in their area.
Ending a Tenancy
- The site provider can only end your tenancy if:
- you or a member of your household has breached the terms of your Agreement. This includes not paying your rent, or failing to meet the Responsibilities set out below;
- the pitch has been allocated to you as a result of false information given by you in your application for the pitch;
- the site provider has reasonable grounds for believing you have abandoned the pitch, as you have not used the pitch for 7 consecutive weeks and have not told the site provider you will be away;
- In some situations the site provider will have to go to Court before they can end your tenancy. You have the right to defend any legal action taken by the site provider against you.
- The site provider must give you written notice that they intend to end your tenancy, or have asked a court to do so. They must say on what grounds they are seeking to terminate your tenancy.
- The site provider should have an internal appeal process that you can use to appeal against a decision to end your tenancy. They should provide you with details of this process when they tell you they have decided to end your tenancy.
- On your death the tenancy agreement for the pitch can be passed on to:
a) an occupant’s spouse or civil partner who is residing with you. If this does not apply the tenancy passes on to:
b) a member of your family who is residing with you. If this does not apply the normal law covering inheritance will apply.
- The site provider must consult you in advance about repairs, proposed increases to rent levels, and other significant issues affecting those living on the site. Your views must be taken into account.
Information and Complaints
- The site provider must provide you with a written tenancy agreement, information about how to make a formal complaint about the site provider, and information on your rights and responsibilities. The site provider must provide you with information on how they allocate pitches, if you ask them for it.
- The site provider must provide you with information on how to operate the appliances and systems in the amenity block.
- You must take reasonable care to prevent damage or injury to the pitch, common parts, and others on the site. The site provider will not be responsible for repairing damage caused wilfully or negligently by a pitch tenant or visitor. You will be responsible for reasonable costs the site provider incurs in repairing wilful damage.
- You are responsible for the behaviour of any animals kept on your pitch, and the pets or other animals of anyone who visits you on your pitch. This includes taking reasonable care to avoid pets fouling or causing damage to the pitch, someone else’s pitch, or common parts of the site.
- You must take reasonable care that your rubbish and recycling is put out for collection in line with the requirements on the site, including any arrangements in place for the recycling and removal of gas bottles.
- You and your visitors must not harass or act in an anti-social manner towards any person on the site or in the neighbourhood. Anti-social behaviour would include activities such as making excessive noise, causing nuisance or annoyance to other people, possession of illegal substances, or allowing your pitch to be used for illegal or immoral purposes.
Care of your pitch
- You must report to the site provider as soon as reasonably possible any damage to your pitch, amenity blocks, or common parts.
- You must take reasonable care of the pitch, including carrying out minor repairs and internal decoration.
- You must allow access to enable any repairs or maintenance to be carried out by the site provider, provided the site provider has given you reasonable notice, unless the repair is urgent.
Leaving a pitch
- You must tell the site provider if you will be away from your pitch for more than 4 consecutive weeks.
- Before moving out of a pitch you must:
- give the site provider notice that you will be leaving. (Your tenancy agreement will set out how long the notice period is);
- remove all your belongings and ensure the pitch is left clean and tidy;
- hand in keys to the site provider or their representative;
- check with the site provider that you have paid all payments due to them;
- do any repairs you are obliged to do;
- provide a forwarding address or other means of contact.
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