A dog walker is calling on authorities to do more for travellers after a meadow was blighted by rubbish they left behind.

A group of travellers moved onto an area of land behind the Mount Pleasant park and ride in Weymouth on May 19 – staying for just over a week.

John McGill, 58, who has been walking his dog on the meadow for more than a decade, said the mess left behind was an 'absolute disgrace'.

"It's insulting. Part of nature is absolutely destroyed," he said. "The area is fantastic on a summer's day and until a few days ago it was pristine."

Mr McGill, who lives at Redlands, said when he walked round the site last week, there were five piles of household waste left behind, one next to where each caravan stood, plus piles of garden and industrial waste and several burnt areas where fires had been lit.

The rubbish included dirty nappies, food containers, pushchairs and even a bathtub.

Travellers have used the Mount Pleasant park and ride site as a base to set up camp for several years and Mr McGill said more needed to be done to minimise the impact on the area.

"They are a community that travels and when they leave, where are they going to take their rubbish? No one's going to take a dirty nappy in their car," he said. "It's cause and effect. If this is going to happen, then something needs to be put in place and it needs to be maintained.

"Let's get industrial bins down here and try and help these people. Sometimes we need to guide each other on what we need to do."

He added the travellers should not be marginalised because people did not agree with them.

"We are a tolerant society but the people who have caused this are fellow human beings - each one of us should be responsible. I'm part of the community and I want to stand up for the community. If somethings not right, it needs to change and those in power should be doing something."

Cllr Ray Nowak, WPBC briefholder for environment and sustainability, said the council would not install facilities like bins as it was not an official traveller site and the travellers should not be there.

Paula Clover, Gypsy and Traveller Liaison Officer for Dorset County Council (DCC), said: “We provided plenty of bin bags for the travellers to use when it was reported they had arrived at the car park, but some of the group chose not to use them. Those which did fill the bags left them on site, rather than taking them to a household recycling centre – the nearest of which is only 10 minutes away – leaving them to be ripped open by birds.

She added DCC had arranged for the rubbish to be removed last Friday and would continue to work with Weymouth and Portland Borough Council and the Dorset Waste Partnership to prevent further littering incidents in the future.