Couple's three-month protest ends in eviction


Jennifer Meierhans

NEW age travellers have been evicted from their makeshift camp, ending a bizarre anti-tax demonstration.

Police and court bailiffs escorted Prajna Pranab, 52, and ‘Kazz’, 44, from outside the Autolift recovery yard in Backford, near Chester.

During the eviction, a 37-year-old man was arrested for non-payment of fines.

Council teams began work on clearing the trail of destruction left behind.

Since their arrival in July,  the pair attracted visitors and their camp grew to six tents.

Prajna and Kazz pitched up after their motorhome was seized by Autolift.

They had not registered or taxed their vehicle as they object to contributing tax to what they consider a corrupt state.

They stayed next to the busy dual carriageway demanding the return of their home.

But last month they watched helplessly when the vehicle was towed away to be crushed.

It was not long before they were given a new caravan by an Irish stranger.

They told the Leader they were happy and intended to stay permanently.

At the time Prajna said: “We’re having a delightful time. We are very happy here.

“There are so many fascinating people. Friends will come down and visit. We have quite a few locals who come down and see us and chat with us by the fire.”

He added: “They destroyed our home because we were not paying taxes, but at the same time Barclays’ top bankers owe £130 million in taxes and you don’t see them going there and destroying their houses.”

A Cheshire Police spokesman said: “On Tuesday, September 25, two new age travellers were served with a court order to leave the site, which had been applied for by the council. They had to leave by 12.30pm on Wednesday.

“Bailiffs and court officials attended today at 12.30pm accompanied by police officers who were there to keep the peace.

“The woman was escorted off the land and stood watching with six other people while bailiffs removed property from the site.

“The man, aged 37, was arrested by court officials who had a warrant for non-payment of fines. Police assisted with this.”

A spokesman for Cheshire West and Chester Council said: “They have been there for some months and despite several requests to move by ourselves and Autolift, they failed to do so.

“We took possession of the caravan and moved it off the site which is jointly owned by ourselves and Autolift.

“There’s quite a bit of stuff to clear. Their belongings are being collected together and will be stored in a secure place for them to collect.”

Autolift declined to comment.

See full story in the Chester Leader

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