Travellers eviction at Matlock railway station car park ends peacefully

A Traveller encampment at the Matlock railway station car park has been significantly reduced after council officers carried out an eviction supported by bailiffs.

Friday, 28th May 2021, 9:50 am
The Travellers encampment at Matlock railway station

Following a successful application for a court order Derbyshire Dales District Council carried out an eviction on Wednesday May 26.

The order applied only to those Travellers who did not form part of the homeless families also on the site, as, under the terms of the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017, the council has a continuing duty to ‘house’ them until a permanent site is available.

Some of Travellers left on Monday before the enforcement action was carried out and others left before the bailiffs turned up on Wednesday.

In total it is thought that eight trailers left the site on Wednesday.

A further four or five trailers left before Wednesday, making a total of 13 or 14 who left the site in total.

A district council spokesman said: “Following a successful application for a court order under the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 on Monday, council officers carried out an eviction of Travellers camped on the Matlock station car park.

"The order applied only to those Travellers who did not form part of the homeless families also on the site, as the council has a continuing duty to ‘house’ them until a permanent site is available.

"The eviction was carried out peacefully, with a number of the Travellers having left in advance of the eviction itself. The remainder left during the day, under the supervision of council officers, supported by bailiffs.”

While the eviction was carried out in Matlock council vehicles were also deliberately blocking the road across the bridge in Matlock Bath outside the Midland Hotel, to prevent travellers from setting up in the station car park.

A large council van was parked across the road and was constantly moving backwards and forwards to allow legitimate vehicles to pass.

The district council spokesman added: "As always on these occasions, the council also safeguarded vulnerable sites around the district during the eviction to prevent further encampments being established.”

In September, the council greenlit a permanent Travellers site in Tansley but has yet to make progress on development work.