Oak Project

Increasing site provision for Romany and Traveller communities

The ‘Oak Project’ is a partnership aimed at increasing site provision across England in line with the needs of Gypsy and Traveller people, with support from the Oak Foundation.

The 3-year partnership with London Gypsies & TravellersNational Policy Advisory Panel on Gypsy and Traveller Housing and the Housing Diversity Network aims to:

  • Improve learning and understanding of Local Authority planning policy and practice on Gypsy & Traveller Accommodation and how issues can be addressed;
  • Encourage the construction of Social Gypsy and Traveller sites in England through Housing Association development programmes;
  • Strengthen Gypsy, Roma, Traveller civil society’s ability to advocate for substantial changes in planning practice and policy.

Currently, an unfavourable planning system and a chronic lack of adequate site provision means that around 10,000 people live on land without permission.

To find out more about the accommodation crisis facing Gypsy and Traveller communities, head over to our Accommodation page.

Friends, Families and Travellers acts as Secretariat for the National Policy Advisory Panel (NPAP), an independent network of Registered Social Housing Providers, local authorities, Central Government and VCS (Voluntary and Community Sector) groups. NPAP contributes to the Oak Project by strengthening the 'business and social' case for the provision of Gypsy and Traveller sites. 

Through NPAP's network, peer-to-peer conversations can be brokered to help answer any questions or address any blocks you may have in the provision and management of good quality sites in England.

NPAP is Chaired by Boris Worrall, CEO of Rooftop Group Housing Association and Professor Jo Richardson of De Montfort University. 

  • Are you preparing to execute a Gypsy Traveller Accommodation Needs Assessment (GTANA)?
  • Would you like to discuss how to meaningfully engage Romany, Traveller and nomadic communities in the development of your Local Development Plans?

We can offer support to facilitate this as well as connecting you to local Gypsy and Traveller support organisations in your areas.

If you need support or more information on what you can do, contact us at [email protected].

Here, you will find resources to assist in the development and management of Gypsy and Traveller sites. This includes case studies, good practice guides and bespoke training. 

If you have any questions or to access the NPAP bulletin, or just want to find out more, contact us at [email protected]. 

'Kicking the can down the road: The planning and provision of Gypsy and Traveller sites in England 1960-2023'. Friends, Families and Travellers. November 2023. View Report.

Friends, Families and Travellers policy briefing on key issues faced by Gypsy and Traveller communities in accommodation and planning - view here.

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