Legal action vow to protect open land
A CITY landlord has vowed to take legal action after its shocked tenants saw trespassers fencing off its land and chopping down the trees on it.
Residents in Eastleigh Road, Peterborough, were left outraged after seeing a group of men, armed with a mechanical digger and hacksaws, access a strip of land belonging to Cross Keys Homes between Eastleigh Road and Padholme Road.
They claim the group went onto the land, which is a green, open space for Cross Keys tenants to enjoy, last Friday and started to chop down a number of trees.
Hilda Hamilton (72), of Eastleigh Road, Peterborough, said she believed it was an attempt at a “land-grab” to knock the trees down and build property there, without planning permission from Peterborough City Council or consent from the land’s owner.
When residents in the street realised what was happening they began to keep guard on the entrance to the land and complained to the council and Cross Keys Homes.
Mrs Hamilton said: “What has happened is outrageous and it breaks my heart.
“They came down with their hacksaws and started chopping away - there were baby birds falling out of the trees.
“It’s awful. These people don’t seem to understand the laws of the land.
“I asked them to stop but they took no notice of me. That’s when
ROWLAND HOBSON. I decided to get Cross Keys involved.
“Since then they haven’t been back but I’ve been standing watch with a number of other neighbours to make sure they don’t come back.
“I don’t know where these people are from. For some reason they’ve got it into their heads that this area of land doesn’t belong to anyone.
“I can only guess that they want to build property on the site but hopefully that will never happen.”
The land was in the headlines last month after an application by Cross Keys Homes to build houses there was rejected by the council’s planning committee. Residents from the Padholme Road area had protested against the move.
A Cross Key Homes spokeswoman said: “We are aware of incidents happening at the site in recent days. We would like to stress the land belongs to us and we will be looking to take legal action against anyone who is found to have trespassed on the site.”
outrage: Hilda Hamilton at the strip of land between Padholme Road and Eastleigh Road.