Redbridge Council is seeking a High Court injunction to prevent unlawful campsites in the borough after a group of travellers had to be evicted from a park.

The local authority ran a joint operation with police officers on Friday (September 29) after caravans were parked up at Roding Valley Park, in Elmcroft Avenue, Wanstead.

The group of travellers, who had arrived at the site on Wednesday, were evicted by officers by 4.30pm on the afternoon of the raid.

Now, Redbridge Council leader, Jas Athwal, has announced the borough is planning to submit an application to the High Court in a bid to prevent travellers setting up illegal campsites in the area.

Cllr Athwal said: “We work closely with the Metropolitan Police to evict the Travellers whenever they trespass and we have to be tough to ensure our residents’ way of life is preserved.

“I have therefore decided to seek evidence to take this issue to the High Court with the aim of seeking a borough-wide injunction that prevents unlawful encampment in Redbridge.

“We are working to that effect and, subject to the evidence and expert legal advice, expect to take our case to the High Court next year.

“I will additionally be lobbying the central government to give local authorities more powers to deal with illegal encampments.”

The council confirmed it has collected evidence of fly-tipping and other environmental crimes at Roding Valley Park after the eviction, which it could take action over.

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Police and council officers in Elmcroft Avenue during last week's eviction

In 2017, the local authority has spent in excess of £100,000 cleaning up illegal traveller campsites, including a £50,000 bill to removed fly-tipped waste, including asbestos, from one site.

Around 20 caravans were evicted from Ray Lodge Park in Woodford Green after they were able to set up camp for several days in August.

Last month, a convoy of travellers who had gained entry to Roding Well Pumping Station, near Redbridge station, by breaking through a fence, were forced to leave the site after a four-day stay.

Cllr Athwal added: ““This anti-social behaviour from a small number of very determined travellers causes severe disruption for residents.

“It costs the council significant amounts of money to take eviction action through the courts to remove unlawful encampments and to clear up the mess that’s left behind.

“This is money that we could be spending on the things that really matter to our residents.

“We will take all precautions to protect our green spaces, including locking parks overnight and during high risk periods closing vehicle access, however, on occasion travellers have illegally forced entry.”