Pavee Point response to Dale Farm situation

Pavee Point wishes to state its solidarity with the Travellers facing enforced eviction from the Dale Farm site in Cray’s Hill, Essex.

The Dale Farm Dispute is primarily a planning dispute, allowed to drag on for a decade.  This is deplorable, but the eviction of vulnerable people and children from their home of a decade is deeply worrying.

Basildon Council argues that Dale Farm is an illegal development on greenbelt land, and that this is unacceptable, but the site was a scrapyard before it became a dwelling area, at mimimal cost to the exchequer.  There is no proposal to pull other developments in the greenbelt down, because it would be nonsensical to do so.  Pavee Point argues that it is equally nonsensical to destroy and disperse a community and increase homelessness in the Basildon area.

Pavee Point believes that the most sensible thing to do at this stage is to retrospectively grant a once-off planning permission to the site.  This would save the tax payer and the council tax payer up to £18m in costs, and would provide for the continued flourishing of a Traveller community in the Dale Farm site.

For the sake of the children and vulnerable Travellers on the site, this eviction must not proceed.  Even at this late hour, there must still be scope for a more civilised negotiated decision.