Traveller battle to go on

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THE battle between Over Wyre residents and Travellers who set up a caravan camp on land off Lancaster Road, Preesall, is set to continue.

The Travellers, who bought the land but set up camp without planning permission, were later refused permission, with that decision being rubber stamped by an appeal inquiry.

They were given 18 month to quit the site earlier this summer, but now have lodged a second appeal, challenging the first ruling.

The move has been attacked by two local MPs, village MP Eric Ollerenshaw and the former Preesall MP Ben Wallace, who represented the village under previous consitituency boundaries.

Mr Ollerenshaw said: “This is yet another delaying tactic, the travellers know that they have broken the law, and are now just dragging their feet to try and remain on the site for as long as possible.

“The public want to see fair play - everyone being treated equally and even-handedly in the planning process.

“The current system has been abused for too long, which is why I am pleased that the new government is making radical changes to the planning rules to tackle this problem, which should become law by the end of this year.”

Mr Wallace said: “My main concern is for local residents who have had to endure this development for far too long already.

“It is obvious that the decision to appeal has been taken without any regard for the rights or feelings of the people who have to live with this unauthorised development on a daily basis.”

When the retrospective planning application for the site was debated by Wyre Council, and rejected, a representative of the Travellers’ legal team, Mr Damian Green, said they were confident it would get the go-ahead. The timescale for the second appeal has not yet been announced.