THERE were more than 150 Traveller caravans pitched in Wyre Forest at the start of this year, new figures show.

It comes as the Friends, Families and Travellers charity celebrates Gypsy, Roma and Traveller History Month and calls on the government to tackle the accommodation crisis facing the community.

Figures from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities show there were 184 Traveller caravans recorded in Wyre Forest in January – it was up from 147 the year before.

Of them, 49 did not have planning permission.

The data also shows there were spaces for 46 caravans at local authority and privately-owned sites in Wyre Forest.

A spokesperson at Friends, Families and Travellers, which works on behalf of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities across the UK, said: "The chronic shortage of safe stopping places means that over 3,000 Gypsy and Traveller families are left with little to no options about where to stop and rest, and live in fear of retribution."