Injunction preventing removal of caravan in Clare train station car park lifted

Mr Justice Senan Allen told Bernadette Harty that gardaí do not intend at this time to exercise their power to remove her caravan unless there is an emergency
Injunction preventing removal of caravan in Clare train station car park lifted

An injunction preventing the removal of a caravan parked in the train station of a Co Clare village has been lifted by the High Court.

However, Mr Justice Senan Allen told Bernadette Harty, who lives in the caravan at Sixmilebridge station, that gardaí do not intend at this time to exercise their power to remove her caravan unless there is an emergency and she will be given seven days notice before she has to leave.

Last month, the judge granted Ms Harty an interim order restraining Clare Co Council, which owns the car park, the Garda Commissioner, the DPP and the State from taking steps under public order and housing legislation to remove the caravan.

The judge said he had done this on the basis that Ms Harty had nowhere else to go.

Shannon house

However, since then he had been told there was a "significant development" in that Ms Harty had been offered a house in Shannon by the council, an area she had previously nominated when seeking accommodation.

“She may take the view that is less than ideal and she does not want it anymore, but the fact of the matter is that is a significant development in the case”, he said.

She also wished to discharge her legal advisors appointed by the Free Legal Advice Centre (FLAC) because her relationship with them had broken down, he said.

Ms Harty, representing herself, said she would be in fear if she had to move, and she could not find an alternative place in seven days if required to do so.

Council

James Connolly SC, for the council, said Ms Harty and two other members of her family are occupying the car park and the council would like gardaí to have some flexibility in regard to the removal of the caravan. The council recognised its duty to provide accommodation and had offered an ordinary social house in an area Ms Harrington nominated.

The council's duty as a housing authority was "to meet a need rather than a want", he said. The council was not in a position to address Ms Harty's safety concerns as they were a matter for gardai but the council may have to bring its own proceedings "if things continue as they are", he said.

As Ms Harty had to apply formally to discharge her lawyers, this was an important "housekeeping" matter and he would deal with the FLAC application to be discharged from representing her next week and to allow Ms Harty seek alternative legal representation. He also said Ms Harty could swear a new affidavit for the matter.

He dissolved the interim order he made last month restraining her removal.

The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission is a notice party in the proceedings.

 

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