Useful Info

Here is some useful information you can use when writing leaflets, letters to newspapers or politicians or organising a local event.

– Up to 400 people (70-80 families) are facing the threat of eviction from their homes. This will be the largest eviction of Gypsies and Travellers ever undertaken in the UK. It is entirely unnecessary.

– Basildon Council and the Dale Farm residents were previously in talks, overseen by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), to find a sustainable solution to their housing needs. EHRC reported that the residents were open and willing to engage in the process. Richard Sheridan, Chair of the Gypsy Council, says that those residents affected are willing to move elsewhere if the Council will only find suitable land for them. Potential sources of land have indeed been identified, both during and since the talks took place.

– The cost of eviction may be anywhere between £8m and £18m – at a time when Basildon Council is facing cuts that will lead to the loss of around 100 jobs and impact on things like services for disabled people and repairs to community centres. The eviction is a gross misuse of public funds- and it is entirely unnecessary. Providing alternative sites for the residents to live on would likely cost a fraction of this sum- several sites have already been identified and there is funding available for the purchase of the land. Basildon Council simply needs to approve planning permission.

– Up to 150 children plus a number of vulnerable adults will be affected by the eviction. Basildon Council has a statutory duty to safeguard their well-being but there is little indication that they take this duty seriously. The Deputy Children’s Commissioner recently wrote that the Council has “no plan proposed for ensuring that the health, welfare, education, housing and other needs of the children involved will be protected.”

– The Deputy Commissioner also expressed concern at the methods used by the Council’s appointed bailiffs, Constant & Co., when evicting Travellers from the neighbouring site of Hovefields Drive last year. Constant & Co have repeatedly been accused of violence, destruction of property and serious breaches of health and safety law when evicting Gypsies and Travellers. In 2008 a High Court judge said it was inappropriate for Basildon Council to continue to employ this company.

– If families at Dale Farm are made homeless they will probably have no choice but to camp without permission elsewhere in the locality or further afield. They face the distressing prospect of being repeatedly moved on by the police – this is the reality of life for homeless Travellers, with potentially devastating effects on health, security, income and general well-being. It is exactly what happened to the families evicted from Hovefields Drive last year.

– The flip side of the coin is that ad hoc encampments mean frequent nuisance and ongoing expense for the settled communities affected. Basildon Council’s NIMBY policy will at best shift the evicted families outside its jurisdiction, making them someone else’s problem – but it probably won’t even achieve this much. Many families will surely seek to stay within reach of their existing work, schools, doctors, etc. in the locality.

– 20% of those Gypsies and Travellers in the East of England who live in caravans are already homeless. Local authorities should be finding permanent pitches for these people, not adding to their number. The EHCR has said that, at the current rate of provision, it will take English local authorities 16-27 years to find the sites that are needed now.

– The problem of “illegal” Gypsy and Traveller sites has historically been created because local authorities have neither provided adequate sites themselves nor granted planning permission when Travellers wished to set up home on their own land (as at Dale Farm). All too often they have just tried to get rid of Gypsies and Travellers, creating a cycle of confrontation.

– All the Dale Farm residents ask is the freedom to follow their traditional way of life. The courts have established that the EU Convention on Human Rights places a duty on public authorities “to act so as to facilitate the Gypsy way of life”. This is why Dale Farm has attracted so much international attention. Last year the UK government was urged to call a halt to the eviction by both the Chair of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and the UN Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing. Recently Dale Farm was visited by a delegate from the Council of Europe to monitor the situation. Now the EU has told its member states to adopt strategies to combat the social exclusion of Gypsies and Travellers – it is becoming harder and harder to justify a mass eviction that flies in the face of this aim.

– It’s about time our politicians, local and national, stopped pandering to racist bigotry.

19 Responses to Useful Info

  1. gmgittins says:

    How frightening that there was no public or political outcry over the degree of deceit and bullying used to evict the Dale Farm travellers. Who’s next?
    These families could have been granted retrospective planning permission years ago; a lot of distress and money could have been saved. After all, they already owned the land.
    The children could have continued their schooling; families could have continued to look after their sick and elderly. After all, they are people like us.
    Is this how we treat people these days?

  2. your land!! i think that they have had 10 years to remove you so why now?? think that they should leave you all alone!! spend the 18 million on things like hospitles and police..

  3. David Cuin says:

    Why don’t you declare yourselves as a sovereign state? You can then argue that the council / bailiffs etc. have no jurisdiction. A nice delay tactic and you already seem to have support from the UN!

  4. Keith McMillan says:

    Fight this under TRUST LAW the government, courts, councils, police are all public servants and thus are our employees, they are acting like the employers they are only the trustee you are the administrator check out Max Igan- new earth new time interview ask them to provide a contract that you have to consent to any statute law
    Don’t give into these criminals

  5. Deb says:

    Following the Criminal Justice Act of the 90s, it became very hard for Travellers as they were constantly moved on and there were fewer and fewer places to stop. They overcame this by buying their own land to live on. If they are not allowed to travel and stop roadside and they are not given permission to live on their own land, what are they supposed to do? I am not clear what people who object to the Travellers living on their own land have in mind as an alternative.

  6. Go Back To Your Home You Ignorant Person, Get The English Out Of Northern Ireland
    Leave Them Alone, Corrupt Council People at Local Goverment Level Just want bigger handouts from developers

  7. Dawn says:

    I wish I could physically show my support, however I live in Saskatoon, Canada. All I can say to the residents of Dale Farm is stay strong, stand your ground and stand up for your rights. Basildon Council are thugs, always have been and always will be. I cannot understand why these poor people are being Evicted, this is wrong! I believe the planning permission should have been extended to the rest of the land, these families are living peacefully, minding their own business and getting on with life. They take care of their own, they don’t scrounge off welfare like the refugees that are flooding into the country.. These are proud people, I had acquaintances from Dale Farm when I was younger and living in West Thurrock, and they were good friends with good families. I pray the council backs off and that a resolution can be found.

    • UK:OK says:

      I have sent this letter to the Guardian, IHT, Times, CNN, BBC and others.
      The economic cost to the UK of this eviction would be billions, not just
      millions of pounds. We would be shunned the world over as Human
      Rights abusers. The UK will be renamed “fascist Britain” if this eviction
      takes place. You are all doing a fine job of defending the UK from the
      CONDEM fascist takeover and dale farm from the Basildon blackshirts.
      Sir, Ethnic Cleansing at Dale Farm in Essex has already made it very difficult for
      me to promote the UK in Germany. No Germans want to buy Maldon Sea Salt
      anymore. No Germans want to study English in Bournemouth anymore. This
      CONDEM policy of Ethnic cleansing is really going to cost us billions and
      make the recession bite that much harder and close down small UK business.
      Please publish this so that the eviction can be stopped and UK jobs saved.
      Thank you very much.
      Paul Bright

  8. Annie Rule says:

    Yes Barb, it is unbelievable isn’t it? I can’t help feel that one of the biggest threats the traveller community poses is the completely different approach to living. An approach that maybe the rest of the non – traveller community can learn from! Yep, okay there are clearly ‘issues’ that need sorting out with the neighbouring communities, but why not sort them out rather than just bulldoze a functioning and happy community of people?? The way some people refer to them is beyond the pale in the twenty first century, the stereotyping is ugly and needs to be fully addressed with education. Why can’t people live their lives in an alternative to the ‘Me, Myself and Mine’ approach that we are forced into? All the people at Dale Farm have my full support. Please don’t destroy something that is functioning well. There is room in this world for everyone.

    • concerned says:

      some i agree are most likely decent people – unfortunately tarred by the same brush of the few scroungers. And they do live at dale farm unfortunately. Those that are decent would, of course, told the others where they went wrong.

      On TV NEWS yesterday “The government said let us buy land and settle down so we did but they wont let us build so now let them buy us the land and build us the houses”

  9. I cant go and build a house on any piece of land i like without seeking the correct permission so why should these people.

    gypies ruin whole communities, the PR they are putting out worldwide now is amazing!.. worthy of the labour party. but what about the tv shows that were shown a few years ago that talked about how having these people living there are ruining the local area?

    i know many taxi drivers who work basildon and they all will not pick up pikeys, they want nothing to do with them. and this isnt mindless predjudice, its because they run away from paying fares and mug the drivers!

    gypies should be moved on and moved on and moved on endlessly. if they want permanant homes, how about paying some income tax and contributing to the local community and becomming part of the community rather than being proud that good, local people are scared of them.

    yes it will cost millions to shift them onwards, and this will cost council jobs, but dont blame the council by saying they are doing the wrong thing, blame the pikeys who shrugged their shoulders at the law several times and refused to move on. we live by the law of this country and so should they.

    • Billy says:

      Law ???!!!! – Have a look around EVERY neighbourhood in Britain.You will find caravans of every size and type in private driveways, gardens and spare land. .They are used for accomodation, playrooms,storerooms,every use you can think of Many of the 8-12 months of the year . 99.9 per cent of these are outside planning laws, parish council covenants, council bye laws, planing use consents, -the lot. Nobody is investigated, complained of, or persecuted -why not? one law for all -but not for travellers -thats why!

      • concerned says:

        funny none in my neighbourhood because of said covenants. I agree they shoudl be kept away from driveways. In fact down my street if you park a sprinter van on teh drive the neighbours phone the council as it is over a 3t payload which is also covered under the covenant.
        You’re right though Billy – it should be ne law for all and not for travellers. So start abiding by the law of our land and dont try to push it.

      • J says:

        there is a difference between parking a caravan on the drive of your lawfully planned dwelling, to use a playroom or whatever. and setting 90 large caravans full of people on a greenbelt piece of land to live there permenantly and build ilegal stuctures to live in full time.
        we also pay council tax… i would love to see if each of these ‘lovely travelling people’ can produce a council tax bill for each of there un-lawful caravans and houses..
        knowing these people for many years, they are all self employed to avoid income tax of any sort so my guess would be a copy of their council tax bills wouldnt be forthcoming


  11. Jessica says:

    I myself have just started watching the show on TLC and hate to tell big brother in England but it will only get a bigger audience now that it is in North America. I wonder if they don’t realize that what they are doing is like what Hitler did with the Jewish people. The racism is so disgusting. I didn’t live through the revolution of African Americans but from learning history in school were taught that any type of racism is bad. I know that no matter where you go you will have the few that never get out of hate but you would think in this day and age we would be smarter and learn from past mistakes. The travelers remind me of my own ancestors the American Indians but unlike them they would be happy for pieces of land to live on and maybe be able to travel to and from. It is a shame that we can only tolerate certain cultures and I pray that these people can find a peace on this earth in my lifetime because even in their beliefs they are just like the rest of us. Religion, Family, History, Freedom isn’t that what we all want they have just been fortunate to keep some of the old ways of living going even in today’s fast paced world.

    • concerned says:

      Jessica – your suggesting that Basildon Council is rounding them up and gassing them. Or perhaps you refer to the ghetos created to house the polish. Who created the Gheto that is dale farm??? Yup the pikeys. Sorry to say but the American Indians are nothing like the travellers that seem to be portrayed as saintly at present. How many American Indians run off without paying a bill? or got the barber to cut their hair then argue that it is no good so they dont pay. Or even better offer to lay some tarmac on your drive as they have a bit over for free as you’re doing them a favour then present you with a bill for ten grand – and dont say it doesnt happen – it did to my parents!

      Don’t get me wrong what is happening is unsavoury and I feel these guys should be treated like everyone else in society. That goes for any race for that matter beit Asian, Pikey, Muslim or American Indian – come here integrate to our culture with your own quirky bent on that but expect to be governed by our laws and pay our taxes like we all do.

      Perhaps Jessica as they seem so much like your ancestors you could invite a few over to stay with you in your garden for a few weeks – well a few weeks means forever.

      Right where’s my bulldozer?

  12. Barb says:

    I’ve just only just now seen the shows on Gypsy and Travellers, as UK televison is slower to hit Canada. This blows me away, for heavens sake if the community owns the land, why on earth are they blocked from building homes? It looks like a well kept community, and heaven knows there are tons of similar trailer park communities here in Canada that are perfectly legal (although I cannot say if there are any Gypsy/Traveller communties, there are First Nations ones). Perhaps the publicity resulting from the show will help.

    • Jacquie Stephens Bristol says:

      This land has been bought by the travellers and they have created a community. Leave them be. This is pure prejudice and is also costing millions of pounds. Pure Stupidity!

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