Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Council backs £18m Dale Farm clearance

A group of Gypsies and Travellers who were fighting to stay on the biggest encampment in Europe will be evicted, Basildon Council ruled last night.

The 1,000 people living at Dale Farm, in Essex, will be moved on at a cost of £18 million.

The council was told that the former scrap yard was occupied without planning permission in 2001. Since then, it has battled to clear the site despite numerous protests.

Several hundred members of the public, including Travellers from the site, gathered to hear the debate last night. The vote was passed with Conservative councillors voting for, and Labour and Liberal Democrat councillors voting against.

A statement from the Dale Farm Travellers ahead of the meeting said: ‘A peaceful solution to what must unavoidably become a long-drawn out and violent confrontation – estimates say the operation by the notorious Gypsy specialist eviction bailiffs Constant & Co will take three to six weeks – is already on the table.

‘The Gypsy Council has put in a planning application to develop a model alternative mobile park on land belonging to the Homes and Communities Agency at Pound Lane and is preparing to submit further applications shortly for several brownfield sites in the area of Gardiners Lane South. They would be financed through a £60 million central government fund set up for this purpose, and would cost Basildon nothing.’

The council has yet to announce when the clearance operation will start.

Readers' comments (4)

Comments are only open to subscribers of Inside Housing

Already a subscriber?

If you’re already a subscriber to Inside Housing, your subscription may not be linked to your online account. You can link your subscription from within the My Account section of the website and clicking on Link My Account.

Not yet a subscriber?

If you don't yet subscribe to Inside Housing, please visit our subscription page to view our various subscription packages.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

sign in register

Newsletter Sign-up

Related

Articles

  • Thinktank backs private sector Right to Buy

    13 June 2016

    A right-wing thinktank has backed extending the Right to Buy to private sector tenants.

  • Court backs government planning policy

    12 May 2016

    The Court of Appeal has backed a government decision to waive affordable housing requirements for small developments.

  • Council 'disappointed' by merger plan

    28 April 2016

    A Welsh council has expressed its disappointment after its proposal to ‘protect’ a troubled social landlord was snubbed in favour of a merger with a larger housing association.

  • Council ends controversial agreement

    1 February 2016

    Winchester Council has voted to terminate a development agreement that was called in by the previous secretary of state and led to the resignation of the council leader last year.

  • Welsh housing minister backs CIH diversity drive

    6 July 2015

    The Welsh housing minister and four of the leading housing and equality organisations in Wales have backed the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) drive for greater diversity in housing.

IH Subscription