Furious villagers' ultimatum to Flintshire Council: We'll take gipsy park fight to court

Reporter:

Lois Hough

CAMPAIGNERS have warned they will take legal action if the council fails to remove gipsies from land near their village.

The West Bagillt Action Committee has blasted officials for failing to shift travellers from Dollar Park on the Bagillt to Holywell Road.

But a planning chief has told the Leader action is forthcoming.

The settlement was ordered to disband in February after a planning inspection rule they had to go, but has yet to move on.

Committee members launched a campaign to remove the site almost three years ago after it was set up without planning permission.

Fed up with the slow response, they are calling for the council to take immediate action or face court action.

A group spokesman told the Leader: “We do not want to instigate legal action against the council but we will if the need arises.

“Their procrastination has gone on for far too long. There is no requirement whatsoever to find them any alternative place to be.

“Remove these travellers as instructed by the inspectorate.”

Two retrospective planning applications from travellers seeking to stay at the site have been rejected by planning officers following concerns about increased traffic and health and safety laws.

At a planning meeting in April when permission was refused, one disgruntled resident shouted: “You’re all prejudiced against gipsies.”

The group spokesman issued a stark message to the council: “You should join the workmen that have the job of cleaning up all the mess after they have been removed from all the places they illegally occupy in and around Flintshire.

“Enforcement action is required immediately – fast, swift and permanent.

“Get on with it.”

Andrew Farrow, head of planning at Flintshire Council, said: “We are preparing the evidence to take formal enforcement action, taking advice from our barrister, and in discussion with the local and executive members.”

See full story in the Leader

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