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Dozens of sites across Wolverhampton to stay protected from travellers

By Richard Guttridge | Wolverhampton | Environment | Published:

Dozens of key sites across Wolverhampton will stay protected from travellers after an injunction was extended.

The transit site will be built near the Winning Post pub

The city council has been allowed to continue with the injunction until January 2022 following a review at the High Court.

It guards nearly 60 sites in the city from illegal encampments.

It comes ahead of work starting on a transit site on Gorsebrook Road where travellers can legally stay. The site, which attracted widespread opposition, is due to open in January.

Council bosses argued the transit site was needed to give travellers somewhere they can pitch up if they were going to persuade judges the injunction, which ensures groups can be moved on within 24 hours, should stay in place.

Up to 13 traveller families could be housed for a maximum 14 days at a time with a year-long, trial to assess the level of use.

High Court judge, Mr Justice Martin Spencer, praised the council for its efforts to get the travellers site moving and said the authority was “working hard” to make sure it gets built and opened near the Winning Post pub.

Councillor Steve Evans, environment boss at Wolverhampton Council, said: “I'm very pleased that the High Court has approved the continuation of the injunction to protect our most vulnerable spaces against unauthorised encampments.

“Without the continued injunction, we were facing costs of between £250,000 to £300,000 a year to move on unauthorised camps and I would like thank everyone who has been involved in ensuring the continuation of the injunction.

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“We will now continue to develop the transit site, after work was delayed for the bird nesting season and due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The site will offer a place for travellers to stay for short periods of time for a fee.”

Wolverhampton’s traveller injunction was initially granted in October 2018 to run for three years, covering 60 sites.

Anyone illegally occupying any of the protected sites could be arrested and imprisoned, fined or have their assets seized. 

Richard Guttridge

By Richard Guttridge
Investigations Editor - @RichG_star

Investigations Editor for the Express & Star.

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