The site at Storrs Common where the campervan has been 'plonked'

The site at Storrs Common where the campervan has been 'plonked'

A man has been fined for ignoring an enforcement notice to remove his campervan from a site near one of Yorkshire’s Three Peaks.

John Stevens pleaded guilty at York Magistrates Court and was fined £250.

The 49-year-old was also ordered to pay £750 towards the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority’s costs and a £30 surcharge. The court ordered him to pay the money in £20 weekly instalments.

Stevens has been living in the campervan on Storrs Common near Ingleton for three years. The site is just a few metres from the footpath used by walkers to reach the summit of Ingleborough via the Crina Bottom route.

Police arrested Stevens on Saturday morning after a warrant was issued for previous non-attendance at court. He was held last weekend in police custody.

The campervan remains on Storrs Common and the national park authority said it is up to Mr Stevens to observe the enforcement notice and move it – or face further legal action.

Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority member champion for development management, Robert Heseltine, who is also a Craven District councillor, said: “John Stevens plonked his caravan in a highly visible and isolated spot outside Ingleton in May 2015 without thought for others, and made no attempt to seek planning permission.

“Unsurprisingly, members of the public complained. We acted on these complaints by taking enforcement action, but not before giving Mr Stevens plenty of time to find alternative accommodation. He repeatedly declined help from Craven District Council housing services.

“When enforcement notices requiring Mr Stevens to remove the caravan were finally issued, in October 2015 and January 2016, he ignored them. We had no option left but to take the issue to the courts.

“It cannot be right for one person to act outside the rules that everyone else has to abide by. Isolated homes in the countryside are permitted, but only in special circumstances, such as when someone needs to live near their place of work.”

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