Catholic and Anglican bishops speak out on Dale Farm evictions

Bishop Thomas McMahon from the Catholic Diocese of Brentwood and Bishop Stephen Cottrell of the Anglican Diocese of Chelmsford paid a pastoral visit to the Dale Farm site last Tuesday. They talked and prayed with some of the Travellers who face imminent eviction from the site by Basildon Council. Both Bishops also talked to the significant numbers of journalists on the site about their concerns.

The Bishops subsequently issued the following statement: ‘The Travellers’ community at Dale Farm, near Basildon, invited us to visit them today. An eviction notice is due to take effect at 12 midnight tomorrow. We prayed with Christian and non-Christian families and children who are under extreme stress, and expressed our solidarity with them.

‘This is a desperate situation. It is important that people should know that it is a humanitarian crisis, whatever they make of the legality and politics of the situation. The travellers are frightened and anxious people. If elderly and infirm people were shown on TV being forced out of their homes, we wouldn’t think we were watching something happening in England, but that is what will happen here….

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3 comments on “Catholic and Anglican bishops speak out on Dale Farm evictions

  1. Jon R says:

    The history of these travelers is quite interesting in that They don’t travel! The reason they are in England is because the Irish got rather tired of them squatting on public land. Now the EU have got involved there is no hope of the local councils getting them to “Travel” anywhere else, or abide by local building regulations. This is posted by a decendant of Norwegian travelers, who usually had a trade (even if it was minding other people’s horses!). 😉

  2. evan miller says:

    Whynot just stick with calling them Gypsies? For crying out loud, everyone in the arrival and departure gates at Heathrow is a traveler!

  3. Teatime2 says:

    Totally different ethnicity, evan. “Gypsies”are “Roma” and come from Eastern Europe. As Jon says, this group’s history and “roots” are Irish.