Travellers occupying a park in Bicester have been told to leave.

The travellers occupying Glory Farm Park, which is off Sunderland Drive, have until this evening (Saturday, July 8) to leave after their presence was reported to the police by Bicester Town Councillor Sam Holland.

Mr Holland said the travellers were issued with an eviction notice and must leave by this evening, Saturday, July 8. 

The travellers have been seen at the park since Thursday evening and Mr Holland reported their encampment to the police yesterday, Friday, July 7.

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Oxford Mail: Travellers can be seen in the parkTravellers can be seen in the park (Image: Sam Holland)

Mr Holland, who represents Bicester East, said it was important residents’ lives were not disrupted by the “illegal occupation” of the green recreational space.

He said: “On Friday I spoke with the Thames Valley Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Barber who has tasked police resources to be available to enforce the eviction notice which has a deadline of Saturday evening.

“Whilst we recognise travelling communities have longstanding historic cultural traditions, we at a local level must ensure the law is enforced and residents’ lives are not disrupted by illegal occupation of the land.

“That’s why we’ve acted swiftly here in Bicester with the police.”

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Oxford Mail: Sam Holland takes a picture of himself outside the parkSam Holland takes a picture of himself outside the park (Image: Sam Holland)

Mr Holland explained the travellers managed to gain entry to the land, as the “gate to accessing the land had its lock broken and remains open for access”.


Oxford Mail: Sign up to Ed Halford's free weekly Politics newsletter here Sign up to Ed Halford's free weekly Politics newsletter here (Image: Newsquest)

Thames Valley’s police and crime commissioner Matthew Barber said: “I have pushed Thames Valley Police for a more consistent approach to dealing with illegal encampments.

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“New legislation gives the police more powers when there is a significant impact on communities and whilst operational decisions on individual cases are rightly in the hands of the police, I am encouraged to see a fair and firm approach being taken to applying the law.”

Mr Barber said the impact of travellers on the police force’s resources would be less if councils did more to provide “official sites”.

A Thames Valley Police spokesman said: “We are aware of an unauthorised encampment which was reported on Sunderland Drive in Bicester on Thursday.

“A section 60C of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 was served yesterday and complied with.

“No arrests or vehicles were seized as a result of police activity.”

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Ed specialises in writing political stories for the Oxford Mail and The Oxford Times. 

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