Caravan set on fire as riot police begin Dale Farm eviction

The caravan was set ablaze to stall the line of advancing riot police (Pictures: Channel 4 News)
The caravan was set ablaze to stall the line of advancing riot police (Pictures: Channel 4 News)

Wednesday, 19, Oct 2011 10:39

by Marcus Dubois

A burning caravan has been used as the centrepiece of a barricade by protestors challenging the eviction of travellers from Dale Farm in Essex.

According to the Press Association, riot police entered the UK's largest travellers' site at 0700 after breaking down a fence at the rear of the farm. The move followed earlier discussions at the front with residents, described by supporters as a diversionary tactic by police. Officers used axes to hack through fences and gain entrance, prompting clashes between police and protestors in which bricks and bottles were thrown.

Caravan barricade

The caravan was said to have been set ablaze in order to stall a line of riot police moving forward. One angry protestor stood in front of the burning caravan bearing a cross, and compared Dale Farm to the Gaza settlements in Israel. Speaking to broadcast media, she claimed both groups had faced "persecution and ethnic cleansing".

The caravan itself belongs to a 72 year old resident Mary Flynn, a severely ill traveller who applied for an injunction in August to stop her eviction from the site.

Reports from the Guardian suggest that a second caravan painted with the words "Lady with difficulty breathing" was also set ablaze around 09.30 this morning.

The Dale Farm eviction

Fifty-one illegal pitches are said to be home to up to 400 people on the Dale Farm site. On Monday residents were denied the right to appeal against a High Court ruling which allowed Basildon Council to evict them.

Leader of Basildon Council Tony Bale was outspoken about the protests. "The pre-meditated and organised scenes of violence that we have already seen with protestors throwing rocks and bricks, threatening police with iron bars and setting fire to a caravan, are shocking".

Meanwhile the Dale Farm Solidarity Campaign issued a statement earlier this morning explaining the reasoning behind their actions. "Residents and supporters remain inside the site, many locked onto blockades and caravans together in order to resist the eviction. Police breached the perimeter to initiate the eviction".

At the time of writing, police and bailiffs were engaged in a standoff with protestors, with several being forcibly removed from scaffolding and buildings.

Comments - What do you think?
Related stories

Discover Leisure confirms 240 job losses as caravans are withheld

Discover Leisure was one of the UK's largest caravan dealerships

Warranty repairs customers have been unable to get their tourers back from the York-based dealership, amid mass layoffs

British Airstream pioneer talks of caravan obsession

Michael Hold (centre) set about adapting Airstreams for UK roads seven years ago

The man who first imported Airstream caravans to the UK has told a local newspaper how he gave up his job to follow his passion

Winter Touring

Who is away over the Festive period?  We away from the 27th until the 2nd of January. Looking forward to getting a...

help me with my control pad

Hi  I am brand new to the caravan world and purchased -collected a sterling eccles sport 6 berth 586 model 2014  I...

Spare Parts

Hi all, we have a Bailey Senator Indiana series 5 with a cracked front window. Does anyone know of any breakers th...

Are caravan shows the cheapest place to buy a caravan?

Hi all, I've put a deposit down on a new Caravan. It's a Sprite Major 6td with the diamond pack for £16,400. I've ...

new zealand

hi all hope you are all well just seen the earth quake  on the telly looks bad all the houses and roads a lot of p...

2017 Sprite Major 6TD price and value for money ???

Hi everyone, I've just dived straight in and put a deposit on a 2017 Sprite major 6td. The offer was £16,400 with ...

Lunar Design Awards

I am interested that Lunar have done well with the design awards.  We bought a new Venus in the Spring and here is...

Motorhome search.

My wife and I have taken early retirement and intend to travel abroad long term for the next five years. We've dec...

Motorhome search.

My wife and I have taken early retirement and intend to travel abroad long term for the next five years. We've dec...

What's the difference

Hi all we purchased a new 2017 model Bailey Unicorn Cadiz at the NEC this month, with a collection date of Dec or ...

For Sale

Burstner Nexxo t720 - 2012 - £44995

Burnster Nexxo t720

Low Low profile chasis motorhome

Rapido A-Class 999M - 2009 - £54995

Rapido A class 999M

This flagship Rapido model is based on the Mercedes Sprinter chassis (very rare) with the fantastic Mercedes 3.

Monaco Knight 38 PDQ - 2006 - £79995

x

THE most practical RV layout ever on the market with four slide out rooms, full cream leather interior and light oak cabinetry creates even greater feeling of space.

Niesmann+Bischoff Arto 69 PL (auto) - 2011 - £61995

Niesmann + Bischoff Arto 69 PL

One of the best build qualities in the industry including aluminium sandwich construction, deep double floor and front electric thermo windscreen blind make this motorhome fully winterised.

PLANS VETOED: Essex caravan park plans vetoed again

Possible site location at Port Flair

Plans for a 70 pitch caravan park in Essex have been rejected by the local council for a second time.

Caravan site gutted in huge fire causing £1m in damage

Burnt out caravans at the site. Pics from Devon & Somerset Fire Service

An enormous fire has ripped through 160 caravans causing £1 million in damage at a site in Somerset

Caravan dealership launches new online store

Managing director Chris Talbot

Cheshire's largest caravan dealership, Leisure Sales, has unveiled its brand new online accessory store

Caravan manufacturer invests £8 million in new facility

Jim Bolton (Swift Group) and Steve Hewick (Houlton) review progress on the ground works

Manufacturers Swift Group is developing a new £8 million purpose built modern manufacturing facility at its headquarters in Cottingham, Yorkshire