A HOMELESS Polish man who has spent the past few days living in a tent in Trowbridge Town Park has thanked people who have offered to help for their kindness and generosity.

Thirty-six-year-old Szymon Oleszczuk was forced to seek shelter under canvas because he has nowhere else to go after leaving a property in Melksham several months ago.

His bag containing all his personal documents, including his passport and his mobile phone, was stolen from a bench in Bath four months ago.

But since moving to Trowbridge, Mr Oleszczuk has received up to £130 in cash and offers of help from generous residents.

He said: "I did not ask for it but some people have given me money. They have been very kind and generous.

"People have been helping me since I came here. I have been living in a tent in the park for several days now."

Mr Oleszczuk came to the UK from the city of Opole in southern Poland 16 years ago, and has been working in the Melksham, Corsham and Lacock areas until recently.

He is not married and has no children but has always worked, including as a self-employed builder and gardener, to support himself.

Wiltshire Times: Szymon Oleszczuk sits on a bench in Trowbridge Town Park. Photo: Trevor PorterSzymon Oleszczuk sits on a bench in Trowbridge Town Park. Photo: Trevor Porter

Mr Oleszczuk said: "I don't wish to talk about why I am without a home. It was a very difficult problem."

Since his personal possessions were stolen, all Mr Oleszczuk has left is a tent, his sleeping bag and a few clothes.

He is hoping to get help from a friend to go to London and sort out his passport, so that he can return to Poland.

"I'm not really sad. I can survive here in a tent. I like travelling and camping, so it is no problem for me to survive.

"I'm not claiming benefits. To be honest, I don't know how to do it. I'm not really looking for help. I just decided to spend some time on the street. "

Workers from Trowbridge Town Council’s neighbourhood services team spotted his tent at the weekend while setting up for the final Weavers Market of the year.

They have allowed him to stay in the park while Wiltshire Council and charity organisations helping the homeless offer support.

READ MORE: Trowbridge council refuses to forcibly move on homeless tent

Cllr Stewart Palmen, leader of Trowbridge Town Council, said: “We noticed his tent while setting up for the Weavers Market. Wiltshire Council is aware. I am hoping we can find a more suitable home for him as soon as possible."

The council said: “We are aware of the homeless gentleman sleeping in the park.

“We have given him coffee and a sandwich and advised him to speak to Wiltshire Council homeless/housing team."

“At the moment, his tent is the only safe place he has and, against the wishes of some members of the public, we will not be removing it but have advised that he does find somewhere a little less central.”

TTC parks staff had to move him on Monday to enable them to mow the grass but Mr Oleszczuk has now pitched his tent by the Trowbridge Bowls Club hut.

They are quite happy to leave him where he is for now and said no-one deserves to have to live in a tent at Christmas.