Tesco pays out for travellers eviction

A SUPERMARKET giant which made £1billion profits has buckled under pressure from a parish council and will pay thousands of pounds for the eviction of travellers from heathland near Ipswich.

By Richard Smith

A SUPERMARKET giant which made £1billion profits has buckled under pressure from a parish council and will pay thousands of pounds for the eviction of travellers from heathland near Ipswich.

Tesco makes £1,450 a second - but it initially refused to pay Martlesham Parish Council in a dispute over travellers occupying parish council land next to the Martlesham Heath superstore.

Travellers illegally occupied land for three weeks next to the A12 in the summer and the council was besieged by angry residents.


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The travellers had driven onto the site through a space that was supposed to be barred by bollards on the edge of the Tesco car park.

The council claimed it had told Tesco on several occasions that it had to replace the bollards, removed when the store was extended last year, otherwise it would be Tesco's responsibility if travellers moved in.

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The store said in July that it believed the travellers had entered by another entrance and that staff had restricted access by parking their cars where the bollards had been.

But Tesco has now agreed to pay in the region of £3,000, and the parish council said it was “delighted”.

It added: ''We will be providing Tesco with final details of the costs once all invoices have been received. The council has been working with Tesco on a number of local matters and this demonstrates Tesco's commitment to work and co-operate with the local community.

''There are plans to set up a forum with Tesco representatives to air matters before they become serious issues. One such matter is the connection of the Martlesham Community Hall site to the Tesco drainage system.''

A Tesco spokesman said yesterday: ''As far as I am aware there has been no contact with the council recently - and we are happy to move on from this.''

The company says that travellers used two entrances, one of which was not on Tesco property, and bollards were put up as soon as they left.

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