Action on the Playing Field
Denton Parish Council has decided to take vigorous action to tackle the encroachment by travellers on the village playing field.
On Tuesday, 8th June, a well attended meeting of the Council heard reports of the opportunities for legal action against the current trespass. This included comments from South Norfolk Council’s Gypsy & Traveller Liaison Officer who confirmed that the Parish was handling the situation correctly. SNC’s solicitor had also been consulted.
The Parish Council had already delivered letters to all the travellers requesting that they should vacate the site by 10 am on Monday 7th June. This had not happened so at the meeting the Council decided to initiate action immediately through the County Court in Norwich to seek an Order for Possession from the court. It was anticipated that the case would be heard by the end of the following week. If this action was successful and the Order granted this would then be served on the travellers.
It was hoped that the travellers would respond by leaving without any further delay but, if necessary, enforcement action would be required with the grant by the court of a Warrant for Possession which might then involve the use of bailiffs. People at the meeting raised concerns about the potential costs of the process but members of the Council felt they had no alternative.
In accordance with the PC’s decision, proceedings were issued in the Norwich County Court on 9th June and on 10th June papers collected from the court showed Friday 18th June as the hearing date. On the same day court documents were served on travellers on the Playing Field with Norfolk Constabulary in attendance.
At the court hearing in Norwich on the 18th before the District Judge the travellers were represented by a barrister but the Parish Council were successful in its claim for an Order for Immediate Possession. A special meeting of the Council was held the same evening and the Court Bailiff is being briefed. If the travellers, nine caravans are currently on site, do not move voluntarily appropriate enforcement action will take place to remove them from the playing field.
This report, first posted on 9th June, will be updated as the situation develops.