SCORES of camper van and caravan owners have driven onto a protected seafront site.

The vehicles arrived on Saturday at Hove Lawns along the promenade.

Residents have reported seeing as many as 50 different vehicles set up at one point.

Meanwhile Police Community Support Officers have been out on patrol.

It follows the controversy with a homeless encampment this month, where rough sleepers say they will move on, if they can get accomodation.

The area is meant to be part of a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO).

This means anyone occupying any vehicle, caravan, tent or other structure and is approached by an official must remove it within 12 hours.

It is understood that Brighton and Hove City Council has made such a request.

Meanwhile police say that for the moment they are powerless to intervene, but say the situtation is being "constantly assessed".

The Argus:

Cllr Dawn Barnett is angry with the arrival, and went to Hove Lawns to inspect the site.

The Conservative said: "The council should have removed the tents. It has opened the floodgates to everybody else.

"It is a public space. If I were to go and park my car at Preston Park or Queens Park or anywhere else, I guarantee it woud be moved within 12 hours."

When asked why the tents have not been moved under this order, a council spokeswoman said: “This is a complex legal matter and our teams are looking into this.

“We’ll provide more information as soon as possible.”

The Argus:

One resident, who did not wish to be named said: "I saw them arriving at 1pm, there were loads of them.

"There were tents there before, but this escalated quickly. They weren't there when I woke up this morning. There must have been 50 or 60 vans, it was ridiculous."

The council has been contacted for comment.