Basildon Council in Essex has today sent notices to each of the 51 illegally occupied plots at the travellers' site at Dale Farm in Essex, following the injunction until Friday preventing bailiffs entering the site to clear the unauthorised plots.
The council said the eviction could take place on Friday if their intended legal challenge to the injunction succeeds. Many of the traveller residents who had left the site are on their way back. Buoyed by the events of the last 24 hours, it seems that the precedent set by the extremely high profile legal kicking the council has taken may have caused a seismic shift in the power balance. Only time will tell.
Basildon Council leader Tony Ball says he is "disappointed and frustrated"
I am sure he is. Not unlike the 1,000's of Essex residents who can imagine
the £ signs spin as they count the costs for the court action and
Policing involved. Obviously they will pick up the tab in some shape or form.
Ball said the injunction was granted because the judge at the Royal Courts of Justice wanted more information.
I don't know enough about the legalities of the case to know who is right and who is wrong. Or indeed if it is that clear-cut. But I do know that before I entered into the bear pit of a very public and acrimonious dispute I would have all the information at my fingertips.
Negotiators who find themselves in a situation where there are too many unknowns, or were assumptions they have made have not been tested may find that the inevitable becomes the predictable. Trained negotiators value the argue step to avoid disasters and keep talking until threats, an inevitable play, do not end up empty.