Mobile Homes and Caravans in France
5. Traveller Sites in France
There are separate regulations governing the implantation of traveller/gypsy caravans and mobile homes (gens du voyage), where the law provides that local councils with over 5000 residents (or smaller councils acting together) should create gypsy sites (aires de stationnement) where the homes can be installed.
Each site should have its own set of internal regulations governing the permitted duration of stay. In practice, some are effectively permanent, whilst others are for a limited duration.
The law on the provision of gypsy sites has been widely ignored by local councils, as are the rules relating to the duration of a stay, particularly where there are concerns about the continuity of schooling for the children, or fears that the group will simply displace themselves elsewhere in the locality.
In the absence of the provision of a local traveller site, the powers of the local mayor and prefet between them to order the eviction of traveller homes from a site is greatly reduced.
Smaller communes with under 5000 residents are not required to demonstrate they have made suitable provision in order to use these powers, but the matter is still left to the discretion of the local mayor.
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