Dale Farm eviction could take six weeks

Tony Gosling tony at cultureshop.org.uk
Thu Dec 2 13:28:46 GMT 2010

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Dale Farm eviction could take six weeks

11:40am Wednesday 1st December 2010

THE eviction of travellers from Dale Farm will 
happen next spring if Basildon Council and Essex 
Police get £13million funding.

The Echo can reveal the operation to clear the 
Crays Hill site could take up to six weeks if the 
expected levels of resistance from activists materialise.

The council had yet to commit to a date, but a 
report by leader Tony Ball to Thursday’s full 
council meeting says: “Notwithstanding the costs 
issue, and assuming no further legal challenges 
that impede the council from proceeding, the site 
clearance at Dale Farm will commence in the spring.”

Mr Ball’s report hints that the council may have 
to bring in extra staff to run day-to-day services for several weeks.

The report said issues identified during 
evictions at the smaller Hovefields site in 
September and June, which cost £245,000, would be 
more significant at Dale Farm.

Mr Ball’s report added: “The first is that of 
capacity of the organisation to manage this 
operation alongside delivering the council’s other priorities.

“The internal resources required to manage the 
anticipated level of scrutiny during and after an 
operation such as at Dale Farm will have a 
significant impact on the normal operations of the council.”

Requests for £10million from Essex Police and 
£3million from the council to fund the eviction 
are being considered by the Government. If 
rejected, a separate report will go before the 
full council over how to finance the operation, 
which could include borrowing cash.

Mr Ball said he hoped the travellers would move off before the eviction.

Grattan Puxon, a campaigner for the site, said 
traveller representatives asked to meet Mr Ball 
to discuss proposals for moving some families to 
Homes and Communities Agency land at Pound Lane, 
Laindon, but no date had been agreed.
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