Sunday, January 22, 2012

Another 'Illegal Outpost Settlement'?

I hadn't heard of Dale Camp before.

I learned that

Dale Farm is a plot of land on Oak Lane in Crays Hill, Essex, United Kingdom. Until October 2011, it was an Irish Traveller halting site which had been established without planning permission. The site is owned by members of the travelling community and is located within the Green Belt. In October 2011, to give bailiffs safe access to allow a clearance order to be executed, some residents and activists had to be removed from the Dale Farm site - this action gained international press coverage.

At its height, Dale Farm, along with the adjacent Oak Lane site, housed over 1,000 people, the largest Traveller concentration in the UK.

In essence,

in 2001. At this time unplanned development started...Various planning breaches were reported. Basildon Council first served enforcement notices in 2001 and the Travellers brought legal action in an attempt to have these repealed. The council has said that planning applications for the caravans and chalets on the site were rejected because the land was green belt.

And now this, found here:

After the hard-fought, violent and costly eviction of the Dale Farm illegal traveller camp, some may have thought the decade-long saga had finally reached an end. But...the battleground has merely moved a few yards away...since Dale Farm was cleared in October at an estimated cost to the taxpayer of £18million, there has been an extraordinary explosion in the number of caravans pitched on the legal Oak Lane site next door...Basildon Council is preparing to serve eviction notices on half of the site’s 34 pitches by the end of January. The notices would give the travellers 28 days to vacate the land...the travellers say they are determined to fight any council moves to evict them. One, who would give her name only as Kathleen, said: ‘We are going nowhere. When they serve the notices we will ignore them.

‘People are ready to fight for their homes again. It will be like another Dale Farm situation all over again.’ Kathleen, 23, added: ‘They may send in the police and the bailiffs but we will stay here.’

...A total of 43 people were arrested and several injured after Dale Farm protesters fought running battles with riot police in October in the eviction of about 80 families from what was the UK’s largest illegal traveller settlement. A decade-long legal battle was declared a success and Basildon Council announced that the six-acre site, which was built illegally on green belt land, was clear...campaigner Mary Anne McCarthy, who lived on the Dale Farm site for ten years, said: ‘There will be another Dale Farm stand-off, there is no doubt about it. The travellers have nowhere else to go and this is their home. They will fight for their homes and livelihood.

In the UK, the legal process had taken ten years and in Israel, they sweep in overnight even before all legal avenues have been exhausted.

It even went international:

a mediation offer by Jan Jařab, the regional representative of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, was rejected by the Foreign Office

New costs for removal, under 8million pounds.


No comments: