One day, I had a visit from a couple of men saying that they were from Ashford Borough Council. They knew my name and introduced themselves as Julian and Gary. They said that the council had had a number of ‘phone calls informing them of my presence. They added that they had not had any calls complaining about me. On the contrary, they had been told of how tidy and peaceful I am. “So, how can I help you, then?” I asked.
They told me that I had to leave, “Now!”
Surprised, I explained that that was not possible, showing them the damage to my caravan. I explained what needed to be done. I also pointed out that they needed to issue me with a ‘21 day notice’. They claimed that a barrister had told them that they could evict me without notice under Common Law. However, as I had had such a glowing report, they would help me. Astounded by the nonsense that was flowing from them, I simply asked, “How?”
They offered to arrange for the lifting equipment to lift my caravan onto the trailer.
One, Julian, kept me talking while the other, Gary, walked a distance off to make the necessary ‘phone calls. I did observe Gary appear to converse on the telephone. After some time, Gary concluded that they were unable to help. Unsurprised, I pointed out that I had been trying for some weeks without success. They then said that they would be back the next morning to issue me with an eviction notice.
The next morning, they did indeed appear and handed me the ‘eviction notice’. They pointed out that they had, out of benevolence, decided that they would give me two more weeks to remove myself. I didn’t bother to reply or point out that as the country was shutting down for the Christian festival of Christmas and that, as Christmas landed on the weekend, half the time would be bank holidays and therefore, in reality, they were giving me just a few days. I did ask for a contact telephone number, though. That request was refused. I did however, get an e-mail address.
Later on, I read the document and immediately picked up on several inaccuracies. It was then that I realised that the e-mail address that they had given me was not for the correct department. It was for housing. I also, having been remiss in not asking for identification, made inquiries about who visited me.
Once I had the relevant details of Messrs. Clarke and Watts, I wrote to the e-mail address I had, asking for the letter to be forwarded to the correct and relevant department. In it, I pointed out the missinformation spouted by the said gentlemen. Namely that Ashford Borough Council is a legal entity and therefore must follow the correct legal process. In order to enforce Common Law there must be an injured party. i.e. a sentient being. And in any case, demands for removal must be notified, usually within a minimum of 24hrs., not immediately; That the place that was indicated on a rudimentary map, that it was claimed that I was occupying was incorrect and that I would provide photographic evidence; And that the claim that I was residing was also incorrect. The caravan had broken down. Therefore, my being there was an Act of God. That being the case, I had a case under Divine Law! Divine Law of course, supersedes Common Law. All of which I could easily prove in a Court of Law.
I also pointed out that if they carried out their (unlawful) threatened action, it would cost the taxpayer, the people who pay their wages and whom they are supposed to represent, several thousands of pounds (three recovery trucks, certificated enforcement officers and police) to make me homeless. Yet for a few hundred pounds, one of those recovery trucks could solve the problem in less than an hour. Money, I could potentially pay back.
Of course, I didn’t want confrontation. I put notices on the local Facebook pages, chatted to a number of the villagers and even wrote to the offices of Chilham Castle. Many were up in arms about the way I was being treated. Some wanted to petition the council. It was even suggested (flippantly) that I park in the village square!
In the end Michael and Froggy came to the rescue. I will write about that in my next post.
On the day of the threatened action, the deadline came and went. At some point later in the afternoon, Messrs. Clarke and Watts finally appeared. “Hi.” said Julian, “How was your Christmas?”
Astounded at the insult, I retorted, “What sort of fucking Christmas do you think I had!?”, going on to castigate him for the thoughtless comment. He tried to defend himself, but I launched into him and told him in no uncertain terms that he should stop pretending to be pleasant. I laid into him pretty thick.
That aside, he then asked about the work I was doing. I explained that I was making the final repairs to make my home safe to move. He asked how long it would take. I told him that he should go away, have a nice weekend with his family and that come Monday morning I would be gone. I gave him my word. He accepted that. He then asked as to where I was going next. I told him that it was none of his business.
*header photo courtesy of www.logolynx.com