UNAUTHORISED TRAVELLERS ENCAMPMENT – BEDQUILTS, ADEL

I have been in contact with the Council, the Police and the University in relation to the unauthorised traveller site that has been set up on Bedquilts in Adel. Below are the updates I have received. In addition you may find the attached link helpful in relation to national guidance on enforcement action in these situations.

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/7837/143582.pdf

Initial Notification from the Council:

Sent: 18 July 2013 15:50
Subject: Encampment At Bedquilts, Adel Lane

We have received a report of an encampment in your ward, at the above location.

The arrival of these caravans has taken place within the previous hour.

We will be following our usual procedures, as per the Government guidance.

Should any of your constituents have any concerns, please inform them that they can contact this service on 0113 2475493.

The travellers are actually located on the land owned by Leeds Met and it falls to them to arrange for the court orders and the clean-up of the area. There are 3 further updates below which followed the initial notification:

 1.    Leeds City Council

We have been to the encampment today to carry out the welfare needs assessment which we need to do as a precursor to recovering possession through a court process. The Council can only evict trespassers with a court order. The only contentious issue is the ownership of the land where the Travellers are camped.  I understand parcels of the land are owned by the Council, Leeds Met University and Wade’s Trust. If the Travellers are camped on land belonging to other bodies then the owners will have to initiate the possession proceedings. Legal Services are currently establishing the land ownership.

2.    The Police

This group are part of a larger group that arrived in the area last week, firstly at Menston, then Otley Show field and then to West Park. They fragmented, half are now on Bedquilts and the others on the ring road near to McDonalds at West Park/Spen Lane.

It is quite clear that no damage has been caused entering Bedquilts.

Although it will be of little consolation, we have not noticed any increase in crime and disorder with the appearance of this group.

The joint visit took place this morning as planned. The outcome was that it was decided upon that the travellers were sited on the Leeds Met University land.

I have just been updated with the latest news and the University have instructed solicitors who have made an application to the courts to seek an injunction. They have been granted a hearing on Monday morning and I am confident that the court will grant an injunction which will be served that day. Obviously we will support the University or their agents to do this.

In the meantime we will continue to monitor the situation and increase the number of patrols in the area to reassure the local residents. The University have acted promptly.

At least this way there should be a resolution by Monday afternoon providing there are no legal setbacks.

 

3. Leeds Metropolitan University

 

Our University has set in motion yesterday a court order through our Legal and Governance team and with our solicitors DWF LLP, who visited the site with University representatives yesterday. I am led to believe it is hoped that with this the camp can be removed as early as Monday or Wednesday latest. Our security staff are visiting the site regularly to monitor activity.

I hope this provides some reassurance that we are working hard with officials to resolve this but I am sure this is a stressful time for the residents.

I’m checking with the Council to ensure the Court Order applied for will cover the whole of Bedquilts.

Please pass this information to your friends and neighbours who may not be on the email list and I will keep you advised of any further information I receive.