Travellers refuse to quit common

By David LennardA NUMBER of travellers camped on a common have refused to leave the site, even though they have been served with an eviction order.For the past few weeks more than 20 caravans have been camped on the common at Ilketshall St Andrew.

By David Lennard

A NUMBER of travellers camped on a common have refused to leave the site, even though they have been served with an eviction order.

For the past few weeks more than 20 caravans have been camped on the common at Ilketshall St Andrew.

The families staying in the caravans were served on Wednesday with a court order obtained by Waveney District Council, forcing them to leave.


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Some families did move on and the others were expected to follow soon afterwards, but there were still more than a dozen caravans on the common yesterday.

Waveney District Council officials have now told residents bailiffs would be called in to force the travellers off unless they moved in the next three days.

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Adrian Clarke, the council's rights of way officer, said: “We served a court order on them on Wednesday, but their stance was that they were intending to leave this weekend.”

Bailiffs are likely to be called in by the district council on Monday if the travellers were still on the common.

However, residents have been left upset at the mess that has accumulated on the common since the travellers arrived.

Richard Hall, chairman of Ilketshall St Andrew parish council, said the travellers were treating the area as “one big open toilet”.

Mr Clarke said the site would be inspected once the travellers had left, but he felt the clean-up bill would be “nowhere near” the £10,000 it cost to clear Beccles Quay earlier this year.

The travellers refused to comment about the mess on the common or say when they would be leaving.

A spokesman for Suffolk police said trespass on land was not a criminal offence.

“Although we have powers to act in exceptional circumstances, civil remedies and local authority powers should be used in the first instance unless there is evidence of a criminal offence,” he added.

david.lennard@eadt.co.uk

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