News / Environment

Council go to court to evict tree-top protest

By pamela parkes, Tuesday Feb 10, 2015

Environmentalists occupying land at Stapleton to prevent trees being felled for the MetroBus scheme have been told Bristol City Council will go to court to evict them.

Papers posted near the site in Stapleton state that a High Court hearing in Bristol will take place on Wednesday.

Bristol City Council is claiming possession of the land alleging that “unknown persons” have trespassed and caused damage to property.

Rising Up wants to save the trees from being cut down on council-owned land for segregated lanes for the city’s Metrobus scheme.

The council said it “respected peaceful protest” but had applied to Bristol High Court for a possession order.

Rising Up spokesperson Belinda Faulkes said: “Rising Up tree and land activists are not in the wrong here – however the Councils actions are both ethically, environmentally and potentially legally wrong and their disregard for civic involvement at every level has been appalling.

“People are here to stand up for the rights of nature and local people as well as insist on adherence to planning law. Rising Up take pride and motivation in knowing that thousands of people are supporting this action”

A spokeswoman for Bristol City Council said: “We respect the rights of those who wish to carry out peaceful protest but we must now take the necessary steps to prevent delays to the project and to minimise unnecessary costs to local taxpayers resulting from this action.

“We have requested protesters occupying land at Stapleton Allotments leave immediately and informed them that we have applied to Bristol High Court for a possession order.”

Supporters say the Metrobus scheme will get more people to use public transport and cut journey times. It involves three routes across the city which all have planning approval.

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