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Gypsy Wedding star in eviction plea

My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding and Celebrity Big Brother winner Paddy Doherty has issued a rallying call for more supporters to join travellers fighting a site clearance.

Dale Farm is familiar to viewers of the Gypsy Wedding series but more recently has hit the headlines as Basildon Council in Essex will begin the clearance of unauthorised plots next week.

Mr Doherty urged the public to come down to Dale Farm before the eviction, to act as monitors and support the community during the eviction.

He said: "I'd love as many to come down, even country people, anyone and everyone and anyone, to come and show their support. Just show up with support. It's a terrible thing when people are being made homeless.

"My heart goes out to them. You know last night I went to a TV awards and all I was on about was Dale Farm, I sympathise with them, I really do.

"When it comes to travellers, this is a shameful thing to say, we're not even treated like second-class, never mind first-class, we're treated as nothing, honestly. We're human beings and we've got feelings."

Referring to residents being forced to leave Dale Farm, he added: "It's like taking a fish out of water, it will drown straight away. The whole population will drown like that."

While half of the Dale Farm site is legal, Basildon Council is set to evict travellers from 51 plots on the site at Crays Hill in Essex. It follows a decade-long row over planning permission.

Travellers and supporters have said they will resist the clearance peacefully but contingency planning is under way for major disorder.

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