Sedgemoor District Council’s legal team has gone to court this week in a bid to move a group of travellers from council land in Burnham-On-Sea.

The council has issued and served the travellers with court papers and a hearing will take place before Weston super Mare County Court on Monday, 30th April at 10am.

The three caravans and several vehicles arrived on Monday evening on a grassed area in Marine Drive, owned by Sedgemoor District Council, near the entrance to Apex Park.

Sedgemoor Distict Council said its legal team served a notice on the travellers on Tuesday morning, giving them 24 hours to move on – which they did not do.

Burnham-On-Sea’s MP says there is “no excuse for illegal encampments” of travellers as a small group in the town has been served with a legal notice to leave.

Mr Heappey told “I have contacted Sedgemoor District Council and they have assured me legal staff have visited the site, and are planning to issue a notice for the travellers to move on unless there are any mitigating circumstances.”

“There is no excuse for illegal encampments and I trust that this one will be moved on as quickly as possible. Sedgemoor’s speed of response shows that Burnham-On-Sea and the surrounding area will be much more difficult for travellers to illegally encamp this summer.”

“Local residents need to see that travellers are not above the law and that our local authorities are exercising the powers they have quickly to minimise disruption.”

The council explained how the legal process works: “Once it is has been established that there is an unauthorised incursion on to Sedgemoor District Council owned land.”

“The travellers are issued with a letter advising that they are occupying council land without consent and are usually required to vacate within 24 hours.”

“If they do not vacate an application is made to the County Court for a Possession Order and the notice of hearing is then served on the travellers.”

“Under court rules, travellers must be given three clear days’ notice of the hearing, not including the day that the notice was served, the day of the hearing and not including week-ends or bank holidays; which is why is takes at least a week to move them on.”

“If they do not vacate, the Council attends the court hearing and seeks an Order for Possession Forthwith. This is then usually served on the travellers the same day with the instruction that they vacate within 24 hours. If they still do not vacate, the Police and Bailiffs are called in to assist with the removal.”

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