Ottery rogue caravan bill blow

A CARAVAN dweller s stay on Ottery s outskirts has landed tax-payers with a �345 bill.

A CARAVAN dweller's stay on Ottery's outskirts has landed tax-payers with a �345 bill.

The man, named as Jake Lee, and his two dogs' four-month stay at the land at Salston Corner attracted controversy and complaints from residents, eventually ending on July 24 when Devon County Council (DCC) had to go to court to have him removed.

Ottery county councillor Roger Giles said the council now wants Mr Lee to settle the legal costs, which have left tax-payers out of pocket.

He said: "If he had gone voluntarily gone we wouldn't have needed to go to court.

"District Judge Arnold made a possession order, with costs of 345, on the land at Salston Corner occupied by Jake Lee, on July 24.

"The order was obtained by DCC and named Mr Lee "and persons unknown" - so would apply to any person occupying the land in the next few months.

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"I have asked the DCC solicitor to endeavour to recover the costs from Mr Lee, and for officers to see what physical measures are possible to prevent future occupation of the land."

Ottery town councillors discussed such "physical measures" on Monday, with ideas ranging from placing "big rocks" to excavating a "big hole" at the site mooted in a bid to "prevent access for travellers, but allow it for maintenance."

Councillors said that any installation could not block the visibility splay at the junction, described as an "accident black-spot."

Ottery's Heritage Society has suggested placing a flower bed and two seats on the land, similar to those at the junction of Strawberry Lane and Barrack Road.

Town councillors agreed the matter and any possible solution will have to be resolved by the county council's Highways department.