Couple in fight to stay in caravan

PUBLISHED: 06:36 19 January 2007 | UPDATED: 19:54 01 June 2010

AN elderly and frail gypsy couple, who have spent their entire lives in caravans, are fighting a last ditch battle with planners to be allowed to live out their days in a mobile home. The couple fear they could be homeless unless Fenland District Council

AN elderly and frail gypsy couple, who have spent their entire lives in caravans, are fighting a last ditch battle with planners to be allowed to live out their days in a mobile home.

The couple fear they could be homeless unless Fenland District Council overturns a decision to refuse to allow them to move into a mobile home.

They had applied to live in a mobile home behind their son Andrew Salter's bungalow in Leverington Common, near Gorefield.

But the district council's planning department claims it would breach planning guidelines.

Nigel Brown, development manager for Fenland Council, said: "The development would constitute backland development outside the development area boundary which would have an unacceptable adverse impact on the character of the area."

The couple, referred to in council reports as Mr and Mrs Taylor, have been living in the mobile home since 2004. It was on the site when Mr Salter and his wife Esmarelda moved into the bungalow in 1997.

David Broker, the family's planning agent, told the council that gardens that adjoin the site are used for businesses, a vehicle storage and brakers yard on one side and a heavy plant and machinery depot on the other.

Mr Broker said they moved there because they were forced to leave their previous home, Proctor's Farm in Sutton Road, Wisbech, where they had lived and worked for more than 30 years due to failing health.

"They are of Romany origin and have always resided in mobile homes or caravans, indeed Mrs Taylor was born and raised in a bow top caravan," he said.

He also said that Mr and Mrs Taylor, both of whom are disabled, have no source of income or any savings and rely totally on their son Mr Salter for support.


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