Beausale Gypsies have two months to go...or be forced off land
ACTION will be taken to make sure the group of Romani Gypsies living on green belt land near Hatton leave the site if they are not gone within the next two months.
A lengthy court process and subsequent public inquiry resulted in an order requiring the 13 families - who moved on to the land off Kites Nest Lane in Beausale in May 2010 without planning permission - to have vacated the site and restored it to its former condition by September 1.
But with them as yet showing no signs of making plans to move, Warwick District Council officials decided that contigency plans must be made now to ensure that the order is upheld.
At a meeting on Wednesday night, councillors agreed that, if the Gypsies have not left by September, the council will seek a further injunction from the High Court that will give them a specified date by which they should have left - and another that will state that they are not permitted to return.
Speaking at the meeting, Cllr John Hammon (Con, Cubbington), responsible for policy on development services, reminded councillors: “This is about planning enforcement and in no way about individuals. The report has come to ensure that the council can work as quickly as possible.
“We all hope that no action will be needed at all.”
But Cllr Jane Knight (Lab, Leamington Brunswick) had concerns for what the Gypsies will do after leaving the site. She said: “It is not clear to me where they will go and they will have healthcare and educational issues. We need to have a strategy and a report into what we are going to be doing in the next few months.”
Cllr John Barrott (Lab, Leamington Willes) pointed out: “In the ‘preferred options’ of our Local Plan, included is the need for a site for Gypsies and travellers. The district does not have one at the moment. It’s time for this council to take a proactive part in finding a site or sites as soon as possible. Why should we have to wait until the Local Plan is finalised?”
Cllr Sue Gallagher (Con, Leek Wootton) said officers had established that all the people who live on the site have alternative homes they can move to, but Cllr Cymone De-Lara-Bond (Lib Dem, Leamington Manor) said: “In 2006 we had 46 traveller sites to deal with in this district. The root cause of this is housing needs. We all have a duty to promote good race relations and community cohesion.”
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Weather for Warwick
Thursday 23 May 2013
Temperature: 4 C to 10 C
Wind Speed: 18 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 4 C to 11 C
Wind Speed: 24 mph
Wind direction: North west