Colchester Borough Homes secures court order to clear unsightly clutter 

Date issued: 2 January 2024  

Colchester Borough Homes (CBH) successfully obtained a court order on 14 December 2023, requiring an individual to remove a large accumulation of personal belongings from public land in West Mersea.

Edward Plowman, 42, from Grays Close, had been storing motorbikes, generators, trolleys, and other items on the land next to his mother’s home for years. The conviction stemmed from an investigation by CBH’s Anti-Social Behaviour team following numerous complaints from neighbours and West Mersea Town Council

“This land should be enjoyed by everyone in the community,” said Philip Sullivan CBH Chief Executive. “Unfortunately, it had become overgrown and resembled a scrap yard due to the extensive collection of personal property. We attempted to resolve the issue amicably through warnings and notices, but these were ignored.”

In light of Plowman’s refusal to comply, CBH pursued legal action. Colchester Magistrates’ Court found him guilty of breaching a Community Protection Notice in his absence and issued a £500 fine, plus £200 victim surcharge and £250 court costs. Additionally, the court granted a remedial order requiring Plowman to remove all his belongings from the land within 14 days.

“We hope this outcome sends a clear message that we take such matters seriously and are committed to protecting public spaces for the benefit of all residents,” added Philip Sullivan. “Public spaces are for everyone to enjoy, and we will work tirelessly to ensure that they are not misused by a few individuals. If the order is not followed, we will not hesitate to return to court.”

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