When travellers move on to land the council visits them within 24 hours to advise them they need to leave.
At the same time the council starts preparing legal papers to apply for possession orders at the Court in Dudley. The preparation of papers generally takes around 48 hours. Once they are registered at court they are served on the travellers and a date is set for a court hearing which must be at least two clear days after they are served (excluding weekends and bank holidays)
If the court order is granted at the hearing, it is served to the travellers the same day, requiring them to move off the site immediately.
If the travellers fail to move off the site, the council is legally obliged to apply for a possession warrant to the court. The court usually issues this within a few days but then has to set a date for the travellers to move off the land or be forced off, using reasonable force if necessary. The time period for this can vary depending on the availability of bailiffs. If an encampment is large, the council may have to involve private bailiffs
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Alan Lunt, director of place and deputy chief executive at Dudley Council said:
“We know that maintaining our green spaces and keeping our roads and pavements clear of weeds and obstructions is important to our residents.
“As part of our weed control programme, we do sometimes use products that contain glyphosate, a product which is approved for use in the UK & EU. We are also guided by the Chemical Regulations Directorate (CRD), part of the HSE, which closely monitors and approves all herbicides in the UK which still approves glyphosate, should this advice change we could act accordingly. I can reassure the people of Dudley that all products that we use are fully approved as safe for use for weed control, and all of our operative undertake regular and comprehensive training, to ensure that it is applied safely and legally."