A MAN has been ordered to pay more than £5,000 after an illegal gypsy and traveller site was set up in Bramley.

William Stokes, of New Acres, Nine Mile Road, in Wokingham appeared at Basingstoke Magistrates’ Court after he failed to comply with the requirements of an enforcement notice.

The 48-year-old was asked by Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council to cease the use of land in Cufaude Lane, Bramley, as a gypsy and traveller pitch; remove all mobile homes and caravans from the land along with wheelie bins and portable toilets; and restore the land to its condition before the breach took place.

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This was to include restoring the ground level, infilling any holes and reseeding the land with grass seed.

Stokes pleaded not guilty on November 15, 2022, but was found guilty by trial.

The defendant appeared at Basingstoke Magistrates’ Court on July 17, where he was given a £1,000 fine, ordered to pay £100 victim surcharge and costs of £4,162.52, totalling £5,262.52.

In 2014 an injunction to prevent unauthorised residential occupation of the site and surrounding land was issued and an interim injunction was granted in 2017 for the remaining part of the land.

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Residential occupation of the land that pre-dated the 2017 injunction did not apply to these occupants.

An application was submitted to Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council in 2018 to change the use of the site as a private gypsy site for one family comprising two mobile homes and touring caravans, but it was recommended for refusal. 

An appeal was submitted to the planning inspectorate in 2019 against Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council’s enforcement notices regarding the site, but this was dismissed.