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Court case to evict Ockwells Park travellers taking place today

Court case to evict Ockwells Park travellers taking place today

A councillor has said he is 'angered' and 'frustrated' at travellers occupying land in Ockwells Park - with a court hearing set to take place today.

The encampment gained access to the Cox Green park last week.

Cllr Phil Haseler (Con, Cox Green) tweeted today criticising the speed of the removal process, adding that 'community tensions and resentment are at an all time high'.

Cllr Haseler also called for a review of Section 61 powers which are available to the police under certain circumstances to speed up the group's exit.

Thames Valley Police did respond on Twitter on Tuesday saying that grounds had 'not been met' to use Section 61, which include criminal activity and anti-social behaviour.

Cllr Haseler told the Advertiser this afternoon (Friday) that a court hearing is due to be heard at Reading Magistrates' Court today, which could allow the Royal Borough to be granted an order to serve to the group, giving them 24 hours to leave.

He said: "Usually they will leave without any issue when the [order] has been made - if they were to stay then I assume the council will have to get bailiffs in with the assistance of the police.

"[But] most of the time they do leave."

He added: "Like the residents of Cox Green I am extremely angered and frustrated that this has happened and the time it has taken to remove them from the site.

"I would like to see the process sped up in the future. I have already requested a security review on Ockwells Park and I want to be part of that with borough officers.

"I want to see Cox Green being protected and the authorities to react accordingly."

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