The Irish Travelers are rolled up and ready to return to the Dale Farm site they were evicted from last month – in a $30million clean up operation by an English council.
Just weeks after bailiffs and police forcibly removed them from the largest illegal camping site in Europe, the Travelers are back and ready to re-occupy the site.
England’s Daily Mail reports that dozens of travellers are queued up outside Dale Farm and poised to return to the green belt site.
One traveller called Billy told the paper: “We are going back on there and it is going to be just like it was before. The eviction was one big waste of money.
“We are tough people and we are hardy people, so we will be back on that land and starting all over again.”
Basildon Council has already been granted an injuction by London’s High Court banning the Travelers from returning to the Dale Farm land.
Police have warned that Travelers will be sent to prison if they attempt to live on the site again.
But that hasn’t deterred the families queuing up to return now that the clean-up is finished.
Local resident Len Gridley, whose garden backs onto the site, told the Mail of his fears that the threat of prison will not act as a deterrent.
He said: “I’m really worried that they are going to move back on to the site. There seems to be more caravans in the area. It’s a complete shambles.
“The council should have completed the job properly instead of doing it half-heartedly. I think the travellers will come back on. There is no doubt about it.
“The bailiffs have gone and now there is no security left on the site. What did they expect to happen?”
British bailiffs spent four weeks removing chalets, caravans and concrete driveways after police helped them gain control of the site on October 20th. Craters have since been dug on the concrete caravan sites.
Resident Gridley added: “It’s like a bombsite down at the bottom of my garden now and it is certainly no better than when the travellers were there.
“I have waited for a decade for this moment and now I am left with an eyesore’”
Council leader Tony Ball confirmed his authority will now seek injunctions to move the caravans on.
Ball said: “They must seek planning permission before any more development of sites takes place and this is regardless to the fact that they may own the land.
“Travellers must comply with the law in the same way as everyone else. Nobody wants to see another Dale Farm.
“We are also committed to restoring Dale Farm to a site in keeping with its green belt status, and would remind people that its current condition is only a temporary measure.
“Now that the site clearance has been completed we will turn our attention to any remaining breaches of planning regulations on the site.”