Eviction notice given to travellers in Yarmouth
- Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2016
Travellers who moved onto a playing field in Yarmouth on Sunday have been served with an eviction notice, Norfolk County Council has confirmed.
A spokesman said: 'Most of the travellers at Barnard Bridge playing field have now been served notice, including some of those who arrived yesterday.
'They have been informed that a judge will rule tomorrow on whether to grant a court order to evict them from the site and if so, by when.
'Some travellers arrived after we served notice yesterday and we intend to issue them with eviction notices also.'
The first group of travellers arrived on the field, owned by Great Yarmouth High School, arrived on Sunday afternoon. They were then joined by a second group, with horses, last night.
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The council used powers under section 77 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994, which means a local authority can issue removal directions to any unauthorised encampment, whether they own it or not.
A section 78 removal order will be sought tomorrow, but local authorities must go to Magistrates Court to obtain this.
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Inspector Craig Miller, the local policing commander, said: 'After Norfolk County Council have obtained a removal order from court, it is our role is to prevent a breach of the peace and to ensure traffic flows freely.
'We cannot, at this stage, use any policing powers to remove people from the site as the law requires reasonable steps are taken by the landowner to resolve the situation before we can take action.'
Meanwhile, county councillor Jonathon Childs and Great Yarmouth Town Football Club youth - who use the field - have called for calm amongst frustrated residents.
Lee Hackleton, from GYTFC youth, said: 'We all know the situation at GYTFC youth set up/senior training area is not great. It's a difficult time and we as a club thank everyone who is showing their support whether it is through the donation page for buying new goals or generally wishing us all the best in getting a resolve to the matter.
'The council, police and other authorities have been great. We as a club abide by the law and are happy that the wheels are in motion to resolve the situation.
'There's a lot going around social media at the minute. It's clearly obvious that people are angry which is understandable but there are several racist comments on certain sites aimed at the travelling community. Thankfully it's not connected with this great football club it's on other social media pages and we do not condone any racist or abusive comments.'
Cllr Childs added: 'I am calling for people to behave and we will not tolerate racist comments to members of the travelling community.
'I understand the frustration of the locals, and call upon the travellers to respect the settled community's wishes. No one wants any arguments and the County Council will uphold the law and eviction will take place.
'What is needed is a solid solution to these illegal encampments and further traveller pitches must be found, the days of pulling up where you like can't be tolerated, but neither can racist remarks to the caravan dwellers, it's all about finding a balance.'