Popular Padstow busker who lives in his van is given a final warning to leave

An adored busker has been issued yet another removal notice for his illegally parked home on wheels. Perry Oaks, 55, lives on the outskirts of Padstow in his van where he has been parked up for almost a year, but that might now be coming to an end as a number of complaints have been made. The eccentric and free-spirited busker, who was born in Devon, says he has been busking in Padstow and St Ives now for two decades and has became somewhat of a staple in Padstow, where he is often found busking along the harbour in the evenings.

Back in July Perry spoke to Cornwall Live when his van was first issued a notice by Highways England. The notice told him he had to get it of the road by July 27 – but he had no funds to do so and no private land to put it on. He asked if people could just “cut him a bit of slack” when months without his busking income left him unable to tax, insure, and MOT his home on wheels.

“These three things are something that would have been achievable had I been at work. The van would just be legal and I wouldn’t be talking to people like yourself and the radio,” he said. “I’m just looking for a little bit of leeway.”

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Thanks to the kind people of Padstow and beyond, he was able to buy some more time when GBP1,200 was raised to get it back on the road. But still his vehicle is parked illegally and with a removal pending at any moment, it might be the end of the line for Perry’s stay in Padstow.

“It could be any day,” said Perry. “The council have put a removal ticket on my truck starting Thursday (October 1). Fortunately I made a couple friends who, for whatever reason, don’t want to see me towed and offered to park into my truck tightly, so it should be impossible to tow which I thought was nice of them. “There is also a low lying tree that the council would have to get a tree surgeon for to get me out so knowing this makes me feel a lot happier leaving the truck.”

Perry Oaks is a 55-year-old busker who lives in his van in Penzance.

During lockdown he lost his income and was unable to tax or MOT his home. Now he is begging officials to cut him some slack while he gets his life back together.

Perry, who suffers from chronic illness, has an upset stomach from all the stress and says that along with the belt of bad weather – which has left him unable to play his music – the whole ordeal has left him feeling “thoroughly depressed”. “I’ve left all the council paperwork taped to the windscreen and its surprising how many people stop and have a chat about it.

Generally people have been really supportive.” Perry admits that the council has been in touch to offer alternative support and housing, but he insists he doesn’t want that. “I just want to stay in my van as people know, to do my own thing,” he said. “Should the van disappear down the road on the back of a truck though I will have no choice”.

The council confirmed in July that several agencies have been involved to date, include housing and public health and protection.

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A spokesperson for Cornwall Council said at the time: “Now this has fallen to highways as the van is not roadworthy and illegally parked within the publicly maintainable highway, which we are getting many complaints about.”

At the time the owner was given until July 27 to remove the vehicle but it remained untouched.

Cornwall Council has been approached for an update on the situation.

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