Basildon, Essex: Eviction Bailffs Expected Soon At Dale Farm Travellers Site

19 Sep

Preparations are being made to clear a Travellers’ site at Dale Farm in Essex, with some reports suggesting the eviction will get under way shortly. 

LATEST NEWS UPDATE: BREAKING NEWS UPDATE:

Activists and legal observers stand on barricades next to the main gate at Dale Farm travellers camp

Activists and legal observers stand on barricades next to the main gate at Dale Farm travellers camp Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

5.07pm: With the news that the Dale Farm residents have won a last-gasp injunction, I’m going to wrap up the blog for the day now but here’s some more details.

Mr Justice Edwards-Stuart granted the order at London’s high court on the basis that there was a realistic apprehension that the measures to be taken – while genuinely believed in by the council – “may go further” than the terms of the enforcement notices.

He said:

Having regard to the fact there is no fixed date for starting these – but they are imminent – I do not see that any serious injustice will be caused if the actual implementation of any measures will not take place before the end of this week.

The Press Association reports:

There were cheers inside the site as residents and supporters were told the news.

Activists in solidarity with Irish Travelers who live at the Dale Farm travelers site stand on a van and scaffolding erected as part of a barrier at the main entrance at the site near Basildon, 30 miles (50 kilometers) east of London, England, Monday, Sept. 19, 2011. Local authorities are due to begin evicting families from Dale Farm Monday, after winning a decade-long legal battle to move some 86 families who lived in mobile homes on the site without proper planning permission. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)

Activists in solidarity with Irish Travelers who live at the Dale Farm travelers … Click On Photo For Slideshow 16 photos.

LONDON (AP) — Bailiffs seeking to enforce an eviction order against a community of Irish Travelers briefly entered their settlement in Britain on Monday, pleading with protesters to unchain themselves from barricades set up to prevent police from moving in.

Residents at the Dale Farm settlement 30 miles (50 kilometers) east of London have built a tower of scaffolding poles and parked cars and vans at the entrance to their site. Some have chained themselves to cars and concrete-filled barrels ahead of the removal and said police will have to forcibly remove them.

Irish Travelers, residents of the Dale Farm settlement, stand on a tower of scaffolding poles at the entrance to the site near Basildon, England, Monday, Sept. 19, 2011. Irish Travelers built barricad

Around 20 bailiffs in helmets entered the settlement to shouts and chants from protesters Monday afternoon.One bailiff read a brief statement asking the Travelers to dismantle barricades amid fears of health and safety issues. The bailiffs then retreated.

Local council leader Tony Ball has insisted the removal operation will be carried out in a safe manner, and Essex Police have said they are on hand to keep order.

Local authorities won a decade-long legal battle to move some 86 families who lived in mobile homes on the site without proper planning permission.

Academy Award-winning actress Vanessa Redgrave has come to the community’s support, and the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination urged authorities to find a peaceful solution.

The local authority says it’s a simple planning issue — the 86 families lack permission to pitch homes on the land. The Travelers — a traditionally nomadic group similar to, but ethnically distinct from, Gypsy or Roma people — call it ethnic cleansing.

The main barricade at the site bore paintings of children and a banner crying “Human Rights for Dale Farm.”

One sign warned of drastic consequences if a gate were to be opened, reading “danger of death” for a protester who had chained herself to a barrel.

“Behind this gate a woman is attached by her neck,” the sign read. “If you attempt to open this gate you will kill her.”

The conflict over the settlement has raged since 2001, when Travelers bought and settled on a former scrapyard next to a legal Travelers’ site. The local authority waged a long legal battle to remove them, which it finally won at Britain’s High Court last month.

Ball said Basildon council had declined a request for a last-minute meeting with Travelers once it had been established that the “only purpose” was to delay a clearance operation.

In this photo taken Thursday, Sept. 15, 2011, protestors sit and hold a banner as contractors and security put up fencing at Dale Farm travelers site, near Basildon, Essex, England. Within days, more

 

In this photo taken Thursday, Sept. 15, 2011, protestors sit and hold a banner as …

In this photo taken Thursday, Sept. 15, 2011, campaigner Marina Pepper poses for … 16 photos: Click On Image.

LONDON (AP)Irish Travelers built barricades and chained themselves to cars on Monday to stop police and bailiffs moving in to evict them from their home.

Residents at the Dale Farm settlement 30 miles (50 kilometers) east of London built a tower of scaffolding poles and have parked cars and vans at the entrance to their site.

Some protesters chained themselves to barrels and cars and said police will have to forcibly move them.

Local authorities are due to begin evicting families from Dale Farm Monday, after winning a decade-long legal battle to move some 86 families who lived in mobile homes on the site without proper planning permission.

Academy Award-winning actress Vanessa Redgrave has come to the community’s support, and the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination urged authorities to find a peaceful solution.

The local authority says it’s a simple planning issue — the 86 families lack permission to pitch homes on the land. The Travelers — a traditionally nomadic group similar to, but ethnically distinct from, Gypsy or Roma people — call it ethnic cleansing.

The main barricade at the site bore paintings of children and a banner crying “Human Rights for Dale Farm.”

One sign warned of drastic consequences if a gate were to be opened, reading “danger of death” for a protester who had chained herself to a barrel.

“Behind this gate a woman is attached by her neck,” the sign read. “If you attempt to open this gate you will kill her.”

The conflict over the settlement has raged since 2001, when Travelers bought and settled on a former scrapyard next to a legal Travelers’ site. The local authority waged a long legal battle to remove them, which it finally won at Britain’s High Court last month.

 
 Dale Farm residents say they will not leave

Dale Farm residents say they will not leave
 
 Large police operation expected as eviction notice served

Large police operation expected as eviction notice served
 
Play Stop

Morning Ireland: Brian O'Connell: Preparations for Traveller site eviction

Morning Ireland: Brian O’Connell: Preparations for Traveller site eviction

 
The operation, at the largest illegal Travellers’ site in Britain, was scheduled to begin at 8am, although no attempt has yet been made to move in.

The Travellers and their supporters have barricaded themselves inside the site.

The residents recently lost a decade-long legal fight over unauthorised development on the former scrapyard.

Teams of bailiffs are expected to begin forcibly ejecting the Travellers.

Essex Police, whose officers will be joined by riot-trained colleagues from all over the country, will attend in strength to try to ensure the eviction is conducted peacefully.

One of the leading supporters, Grattan Puxon, said: “The gate is closed but talks with the council are going on behind the scenes. The council owes us 62 pitches for those who will be made homeless.

“We have a High Court hearing at 11am so there is still hope this will pass quietly.”

Resident Kathleen McCarthy said the travellers feared it was inevitable that they would be forced to leave.

She added: “If they had any human decency this could be stopped, I plead and beg to stop this.

“Look what these people (the protesters) are doing to save us.”

Last night, Basildon Council leader Tony Ball said he was worried about the escalation of tensions after protesters apparently called off a last-minute meeting between officials and residents.

Half of the six-acre site, which has planning consent, will remain.

Many residents have temporarily moved caravans on to the neighbouring legal site.

They say they do not want their children to face the bailiffs but insist they are not leaving permanently.

Essex Police intelligence suggests that up to 2,000 supporters from 30 different groups have increased numbers on the site.

The force has been monitoring the site as well as tracking the activities of supporters through social networking.

Related Stories

Talks delay Dale Farm evictions

Where can Dale Farm travellers go?

MPs call for eviction suspension

Man admits Dale Farm site racism

Dale Farm eviction notices served

Keywords:  dale farm, essex, basildon, traveller

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: