Express & Star

Horse rescue operator facing eviction in Wolverhampton land dispute as dozens turn out in support

Dozens of supporters came to the aid of an animal rescue operator embroiled in a land dispute after bailiffs turned up to evict her.

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Wendy Chambers at the field

Wendy Chambers said she was stunned when staff from a private enforcement firm and police officers arrived with a notice to remove her from the field where she has kept horses for almost 30 years, in Grassy Lane, Bushbury, on Friday morning.

The notice

Around 30 residents heckled the team and several officers who arrived at the site off Cannock Road shortly after 9am to cut the locks in an attempt to take possession of the land near Westcroft.

Miss Chambers, 55, of Keats Road, Low Hill, said: "They are trying to get access to the field to evict me, but it is going through the courts. I was supposed to see a judge yesterday, but the court was shut due to a power cut so I wasn't able to get the paperwork sorted out.

"The bailiffs don't believe me. They have turned up to the field with eviction documents and the police to get me off and chain the gates. I have rescue horses here and I have nowhere else to put them.

"I have been here for 26 years. In that time I have put up boundary fencing and I look after the field.

"The land is in the greenbelt and part of the local plan for new housing, but I have been here for a long time and I believe that I have rights."

Wendy Chambers with police officers

The officers left the scene after the bailiffs, from Salford based Wilson & Roe High Court Enforcement, agreed to allow her a week's grace for legal representation.

She explained that the dispute is with Sandhills Estates Limited.

Emma Simpson was among those at the scene and said: "I think it's disgusting that they sent this really big men to come and intimidate Wendy. I asked them to find her another field to move to. She is not hurting anyone, it's a shame she is being treated this way.

"She has got a lot of support and we will get more people down here next Friday if they try to evict her again."

During the coronavirus lockdown the site was used for serving meals to struggling residents. Families and a nearby children's nursery also visit to see the animals.

The enforcement company and the police have been approached for comment.