Help for Gypsies and Travellers

About Gypsies and Travellers

Gypsies and Travellers are recognised as a separate ethnic group in Scotland.

The generic term Gypsies and Travellers applies to 5 main groupings:
  • Gypsies and Travellers whose membership is dictated by birth and occasionally marriage. This ethnic minority group has strong cultural ties, extended families and clans and consists of sub-groups of English, Welsh, Irish and Scottish Travellers
  • Roma (Gypsies) who originate from Europe
  • Show and fairground Travellers sometimes referred to as occupational Travellers, who consider themselves a business community. Membership of this group can be by birth however it is possible for newcomers to become part of this group. Fairground Travellers consider themselves a commercial or business group rather than an ethnic group
  • Bargees and other groups living in boats
  • New Age Travellers who are a diverse grouping with varying beliefs and backgrounds who live a nomadic existence
  • Many Gypsies and Travellers will travel for part of the year and are otherwise settled on permanent sites or in houses. There may be a small group of Gypsies and Travellers nationally who travel all year round