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Last Updated: Wednesday, 27 October, 2004, 08:58 GMT 09:58 UK
Travellers still fight eviction
Cottenham travellers' site
Travellers occupying 22 sites are launching a new legal challenge
Travellers told by a court to quit a site near a Cambridgeshire village have mounted a legal challenge to eviction.

A deadline for travellers to vacate 22 illegal plots at Smithy Fen, Cottenham, expired at midnight on Monday.

The move will give the travellers another week at the site, but taxpayers fear the cost of the eviction campaign will top 1m as a result.

South Cambridgeshire District Council still hope they will comply with the terms of the enforcement notice.

A council spokesperson said: "A representative for the travellers has mounted a legal challenge, which allows a further week for them to leave the site.

Direct action cost fears

"Planning officers would continue to check on the site throughout the week."

On Thursday, councillors will consider a confidential report on the costs of direct action to move the illegally camped travellers off the site.

The total bill includes removal of the caravans and hard standing, plus associated drainage, water and electricity installations from the plots.

As well as the 22 pitches affected by the enforcement notice, the council is also trying to evict travellers from another 13 plots at Smithy Fen.

These are the subject of a planning enquiry and the council's legal bill is already approaching 133,000. Campaigners in Cottenham fear the final tally could be close to 1m.

Some residents threatened to withhold their council tax earlier this year in protest at the council's failure to evict the travellers.




SEE ALSO:
Deadline up for travellers' move
24 Oct 04  |  Cambridgeshire
Travellers told to move from site
28 Sep 04  |  Cambridgeshire
Council victory in travellers row
17 Sep 04  |  Cambridgeshire
Land swap proposal for travellers
10 Aug 04  |  Cambridgeshire
Travellers fight for legal camp
20 Jul 04  |  Cambridgeshire
Council pledge on travellers' row
14 Jul 04  |  Cambridgeshire


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