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24 September 2014

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The history of Gypsy Travellers in Britain
Click for bigger picture.Gypsy Travellers have a long history in Britain and modern Gypsy culture is the product of many influences but its roots reach back as far as ninth century India.
Hop picking near Maidstone

Kent has historically had a high population of Gypsy Travellers because the fruit and vegetable farms in the Garden of England needed a large mobile workforce, providing Travellers with an ideal way of making a living.

In horse drawn days the extended family would travel and work together following a seasonal pattern of work on the county's farms. In winter time they would pull on to one of the traditional stopping places on the edges of towns.

In the years after the second world war the work gradually dried up and increasing legislation made stopping places harder to find. Eventually most Gypsies had to give up the travelling life and settle down.

In modern times Gypsy Travellers are having to adapt an ancient culture which was developed and sustained through travelling into a sedentary existence.

That it has survived this far is testimony to the tenacity of the Romany people and there is little doubt that it will be around for a long time yet.

Early history
Making a living
Horse drawn days
Settling down
Modern times

Gypsy Travellers
Friends, Families & Travellers
More from Romany Roots
Setting the scene
Early history

Making a living
Horse drawn days

Settling down
Modern times

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