Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Local council knock down chanty town

Thrown off own land if you don't have planning

Vanessa Redgrave threw her support behind the residents of Britain's largest travellers' site yesterday - sparking calls for the left-wing actress to welcome the campers onto her own property if she was concerned by their plight. Miss Redgrave, a Unicef goodwill ambassador, said clearing the Dale Farm site in Essex breached United Nation's children's rights and said she was "appalled that such an eviction can be upheld by our government." Around 240 Irish travellers who have illegally built on the six-acre plot near Crays Hill face being moved out whilst the local council remove anything that does not have planning permission.

Posted by khards @ 10:55 AM (1076 views)
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22 thoughts on “Local council knock down chanty town

  • While I may have had some sympathy for the land owner in this instance that evaporated when they began to fling the racism accusations and load up on middle-class crusties with an avant-garde taste for vicariously enjoying being “oppressed”. There may be problems with the planning laws, there may not be. But laws have to be applied evenly. I know about the law not being applied to robbing bankster bar-stewards, the solution is making the bankers pay not letting everyone else do as they please. Also two quotes;

    “Yesterday travellers living at the site threatened a “bloody and violent” struggle if they are forced from the land. ”

    and

    “However, Len Gridley, whose house backs onto the site, said he had “no sympathy” for the travellers, some of whom featured on the television programme My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding.

    He said: “It s been hell for the last 10 years, because of their behaviour and the way they carry on.

    “It’s a green field site; we want it cleared and put back to green field.

    “These people own property in Ireland and all around the UK and Europe, there are hundreds and hundreds of legal gypsy plots, there are plenty of places for them to go. ”

    It may be unjust for the travellers but there is definitely two sides to this story and sometimes it’s necessary to do unjust things because life is never straightforward or fair.

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  • Once the new localism planning system is in place then the travellers will be able to force through planning permission for themselves, that’s why the council are now kicking up after 10 years/

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  • Khards,

    I am not remotely knowledgeable enough about the planning system to know where the faults lie, I do know this situation is well past the point it could have been constructively resolved for all parties. I dislike travellers and I may be racists, I also dislike NIMBYS does that count as racism too? My prejudice aside the way the story has been covered is pitiful, lazy journalism and in built blind spots lead us to the point where we are asked to give a f.c.uk about Vanessa Redgrave’s involvement. It’s a rotten situation but something has to give, and this seems like the most expedient and least worst option. A great number of the travellers involved have already caused so much trouble in Eire the government enacted new laws to deal with them. The travellers don’t seem to travel much either.

    Someone on the Telegraphs comment section linked to this article. I am not sure what to make of it, but it seems interesting but may just be hideously racist. I am unable to tell.

    http://www.sundayworld.com/columnists/index.php?aid=3893

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  • I blame the legal system. That’s the reason it has taken 10 years to get to this stage. The media tell us that “appeals can drag on for years” – same applies to asylum seekers, “travellers”, serial killers, etc. But the court isn’t in session for years at a time – actually hearing the facts of the case only takes minutes. We need to speed up the legal system. Justice delayed is justice denied.

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  • look at this

    http://www.travellerslaw.org.uk/

    it appears although most don’t pay tax, build dodgy drives, scam money, fell trees and dump the rubbish on roadsides etc society is helping them and perhaps the law too

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  • Mark, I don’t get your point. From your first link it seems they have organized themselves to lobby for legal reforms. I don’t see anything wrong with that. This is the nub of the “racism” argument. We use the worst behaviour of the most anti-social members of a group to scapegoat the whole group. The clowns in Essex need to be shifted. End of story. It doesn’t follow that every Irish traveller or group is a problem. Redgrave’s involvement is totally unhelpful. Her father was terrific actor, they do say talent skips a generation.

    I am also missing your point about the stately chalet. It looks lovely. i also like that the price is given over the phone. I am not averse to people avoiding the tax man’s gaze. Corporations avoiding tax though, that’s a different matter.

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  • fubar from personal experience of travellers none have ever ended well and none have ever be clean and tidy they destroyed all the places they moved into, granted some are good and tidy, respecting others, however the links i placed are to show 1) they have reforms, they have help from society and yet pay no taxes, what did the UK do for us when we last looked, hmm taxed us even more.

    The stately home chalet is just funny thats all.

    i am far from a racist so please don’t taint me with that

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  • Think i might sell my stately shed in back garden it has a huge ballroom….lol

    that was my point

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  • Also from a BBC article, which is mostly a puff piece for the downtrodden is this;

    “Outside the camp, most local residents in the village of Cray’s Hill no longer want to speak publicly about living alongside hundreds of travellers. They fear reprisals”

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  • Mark,
    I wasn’t trying to taint you as a racist. I apologize if that’s how it seemed. I was trying to describe why people feel enabled to use the argument rather than saying it was a valid argument.

    I actually think the stately chalet looked nice and have lived in much worse places myself. Different strokes as they say.

    When it comes to the mess travellers leave I am sympathetic to your view. I would see it as a general point, that we should expect higher standards from everyone though when it comes to our local environments, after all it isn’t just travellers who can create mess.

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    LVT would have prevented any of this happening.

    1. Was the farmer whose land was occupied paying LVT? Nope. So why should he be able to rely on the state to turf them off?

    2. Was the rental value of surrounding legally built homes depressed enormously? Yes of course, but under current rules that’s not the council’s problem because they get the council tax anyway. BUT if their LVT receipts from surrounding legally built homes occupied by the law abiding folk of Essex had duly plummeted because rental values fell, they would have turfed off the squatters pronto presto.

    3. Are the gypsies paying LVT? Nope. They’re probably not even paying council tax, ergo the council would be perfectly within its rights to evict them, again, pronto presto. Plus they ought to pay the farmer a fair rent, i.e. however much he feels like charging.

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  • mw @13 I don’t think they were occupying a farmers land, they owned the land having bought it from a farmer. Although getting the details isn’t always easy with the emotive tone of much of the reporting.

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    OK, in which case we can cut the farmer out of the equation, makes it even easier. The problem wouldn’t have arisen with LVT.

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  • MW could you force the travelers to pay LVT ? would the age old problem arise and being travelers they don’t pay tax, how long would it take none payment of lvt to evict them for none payment

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    “Could you force them to?” well, can you force anybody to do anything?

    All I can say is, under current rules, the council aren’t really too fussed about evicting them, if they knew that there was a quarter of a million quid a year to collect, then either they’d collect it and no harm done or else the council would evict them sharpish (because other residents of surrounding houses will be paying a lot less as the area became much, much less nice place to live once the camp was set up, I am taking this on trust from somebody I know who owned a house very near it and couldn’t bear to live there any more).

    And clearly if people aren’t up to date with their LVT then they would lose all entitlement to benefits, schooling , healthcare etc. Fair’s fair.

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  • If people don’t pay their LVT then they’d lose their right to schooling benefits etc? Fair’s fair seems like a particularly Machiavellian way to describe a return to a morally bankrupt Victorian way of dealing with non payers and by association those among the poor who would inevitably struggle with paying their share of LVT. Then again that about sums up UKIP I suppose. The threat of eviction is a good enough sanction.

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  • just seen an aerial view of the site, piles of rubbish dotted all over place..

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    Fubar: ” the poor who would inevitably struggle with paying their share of LVT.”

    Wot?

    The flipside of a Georgist tax system is a Georgist welfare system (universal cash benefits, the Citizen’s Dividend, i.e. everybody’s share of the total rental income of the country and dished out to all), of course poor people would be able to afford their LVT, that’s what the Citizen’s Dividend is for! If you are prepared to live in somewhere in the bottom half of the housing ladder then your net tax bill is precisely zero or negative. That’s basic maths.

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  • MW

    “of course poor people would be able to afford their LVT that’s what the Citizen’s Dividend is for!”

    Basic maths eh? I admire your faith in people’s ability to adhere to what your plan says is their best interest. Nothing ever goes wrong with that approach. Despite that neat obfuscation my point stands that stripping people of schooling, benefits and healthcare when they transgress is morally bankrupt.

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  • In ancient times there were slaves and serfs, now there are wage slaves who have to work a lifetime for a stack of clay bricks in which to shelter themselves and their children.

    In order to maintain this “rat on a wheel” system, it is essential to control Planning Laws tightly and immediately evict squatters who may form shanty towns. This restriction on supply maintains prices so that one working lifetime equates to one family home.
    Shanties must be destroyed immediately. Think of shanties in South Africa.
    If a UK shanty town was permitted, it would soon be 100,000 of dwellings as the dispossessed flocked to it. At that point the housing system could face collapse if shanties spread across the UK.
    To avoid such a disaster, the state will bus in any number of Policeman at vast expense.
    So rats, get back on your wheels.
    Where would the bankers be without the commission, fees and massive interest term interest on your home loans? Have a heart. And where would the Uk economy be without lifelong slaves?
    How would the 1% who own 95% of all wealth make more billions upon their billions. After all, they might even have to work for a living if slavery was abolished in England.

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    Fubar: “stripping people of schooling, benefits and healthcare when they transgress is morally bankrupt”

    OK, let’s say that child benefit and schooling is still provided, regardless of sins of parents.

    On the facts, these ‘travellers’ only occupy about a hundred sq yards per household, the site is tiny, so even under full-on LVT, the tax per household wouldn’t be more than £5,000 or something, the CI claimable by the parents would more than cover this, wouldn’t it?

    Rich K, amen to that!

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