A successful eviction

With the assistance of 20 police officers, Phoenix's High Court Enforcement team recently enforced a writ of possession to evict protesters from a fracking site, where there was a reported further 80 protesters possibly waiting in the wings as back up.

The protesters had set up camp and a large tower on two verges of a very busy A road. Whilst they had actually been on site for a few months they were starting to cause highway safety issues, by obstructing the sight line of a fracking site entrance. This and other protester activity had also caused several road closures and regular contraflows put in place by Police due to potential safety issues.

PREPARATION IS THE KEY TO SUCCESS

As you would expect, we planned the enforcement meticulously, carrying out a risk assessment of the area. Not just for our own Enforcements Agents (EAs) safety but also for the safety of the protesters and the public.

Once we had all the details we required we arranged a planning meeting with the client and the local police force to cover all aspects of the eviction, including communications, operational plans and timings.

PLANNING WITHOUT ACTION IS FUTILE, ACTION WITHOUT PLANNING IS FATAL

The full team briefing started at 4am along with kitting up and registering each agent and their Body Worn Video’s. We then proceeded to the site as part of a Police convoy to ensure our Agents were provided with a safe area in which work.

Two of the protesters had “locked on” at height in a precarious make-shift tower made of pallets but one of them went to extra lengths, by rigging up a noose around his neck, which of course could have been fatal if not managed in the correct and appropriate manner.

Our climbing team had already been made aware of the contraption, so they knew to proceed with caution to ensure the safety of the individual. After respectfully asking the protesters to come down our EAs freed them out of their holdings and brought them to safety.

HUMAN RIGHTS

Not only do High Court Enforcement Officers (HCEOs) and their EAs have a duty of care to the protesters they also have a duty of care to their possessions and personal items. Our EAs ensured that all the protesters were given every opportunity to remove their possessions, even to the point that our EAs retrieved a symbolic hand painted Crocodile after the tower was dismantled.

SECURING THE SITE

No arrests were made and the sight was cleared quicker than anticipated, much to our clients delight. The land was handed back to the Client with the recommendation of Heras fencing being installed allowing our on-site security team full visibility of the area to prevent reoccupation.

To instruct us to remove protesters from site either call our Eviction Team on 020 8787 5907 or email info@phoenixhce.co.uk alternatively you can complete our instruction form here.


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