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Eviction from land owned by Gypsies and Travellers

The council could evict you if you don't have planning permission to live in a caravan on your own land.

How you can be asked to leave

You need to have planning permission and a site licence to use your land as a site for caravans. If you don't have planning permission, you could be evicted.

The council can send an officer to visit your camp to check if you have broken any planning laws. If the council's officer has a warrant, it could be a criminal offence for you to try to stop them coming on to your land.

The council can:

  • serve an enforcement notice
  • a stop notice
  • apply to a court for an injunction ordering you to leave the land

You can be fined if you fail to comply with a notice. You can be sent to prison if you ignore an injunction. Your caravan could be removed from the site if you don’t leave.

Right to appeal against a notice

You have the right to appeal against an enforcement notice.

If your appeal against an enforcement notice fails, but you still don't move, the council:

  • can remove your caravan
  • may try to force you to pay for any expenses involved

You can't appeal against a stop notice but you may still be able to take legal action against it.

How to challenge a court injunction

If the council applies to the court for an injunction, you'll be told the date of the court hearing. You can go to court yourself or someone else can represent you.

The court decides if you should be evicted.

What the court looks at includes:

  • evidence about the breach of planning law
  • your personal circumstances if you are occupying the land
  • whether an injunction is a proportionate action in the circumstances

Where to get advice

Organisations that provide advice and assistance for the Gypsy and Traveller communities include:

Use Shelter's directory to find a local advice centre if you need help with legal or other issues

Last updated 20 Dec 2016 | © Shelter

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