History of Lincolnshire Gypsy Liaison Group

The idea for LGLG was first thought of at a roadside camp, down a country lane during the summer of 2005. However an idea stays an idea unless someone takes action. There were a lot of members of the community who needed help advice and support. There were also many services out there on offer, but Gypsies and Travellers didn't seem to be able to access them. We decided that a service run by Gypsies for Gypsies and Travellers could build a bridge and marry the need with the provision. That wasn't the only bridge that needed building though- there was work to be done with the settled  community, the police, and many statutory bodies who needed to be able to understand our way of life and our culture in order to improve the services they provided. We had our first meetings at the roadside then progressed to a local cafe.

We had support from local community members as well as Pat Ingal of LCC’s TESS, The Library Service, Sure Start, Call Advocacy and the City Council's Equality and Diversity Officer. We were constituted in spring 2006 and moved to our first shared office at the Central Library. We obtained funding from Gainsborough Travellers Initiative, the Travellers Aid Trust and the Allen Lane Foundation. We had invaluable support from DGLG and were able to work with both them and Lincolnshire County Council’s Supporting People to open our own office and drop-in centre in September 2007. This was a great milestone for us and an amazing achievement in such a short time. We officially launched our Floating Support Service for the Gypsy and Traveller Community in December 2007. We had the support of DGLG and Supporting People as we embarked on a pilot project based in the West Lindsey and Washingborough areas.

Following a very successful time with Supporting People we again removed to new premises at Mercury House at the end of 2008. It has excellent disabled access and is very user friendly. The office is still in close proximity to the site and also housed members of the community at Park Springs. We continue to support families on unauthorised encampments across the county.

We are members of both the East Midlands Gypsy and Traveller Forum and The National Federation of Gypsy Liaison Groups. We have a UKYP representative and continue to work hard in all areas where the community needs support. Our membership has steadily grown and the capacity building of the community has increased accordingly. We have comprehensive range of partners who we work with and are committed to networking and sharing good practise.
RD 2010.

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