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If you are a landowner you may find people have moved onto your property without your permission. These ‘unauthorised encampments’ can appear without notice, often causing disruption and distress.
A nomadic way of life is not illegal. Entering private land without the owner’s permission is trespassing.
Trespassing is not classed as a criminal offence. In most cases, this is not a matter for the police. We’d recommend the first thing to do would be to talk to the people occupying your land and ask them to leave, if you feel safe to do that.
If they refuse to leave or you feel unsure, contact your local council for advice.
You could find yourself guilty of several criminal offences if you forcibly attempt to remove them or their property.
The best and safest course of action may be to get a court order to evict them. If the court order is breached, it could become a criminal matter.
If you’re aware of something that might be a crime or antisocial behaviour, then report it to us.
Where trespassers on your land have one or more vehicles, additional police powers may be used under the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Act 2022. Contact us on 101 for further advice.