Travellers at Dale Farm, who are fighting eviction from the UK’s biggest illegal site near Basildon, Essex, have won the latest round of their high court legal battle.

Dale Farm (Getty)

Residents at Dale Farm won a temporary reprieve in their long-running battle to stay on the travellers’ site.

A judge ruled that residents were entitled to an extension of an injunction stopping their evictions until the courts have ruled on the legality of their proposed removal.

Reacting to the news, resident Kathleen McCarthy said: “Every day is a blessing and we feel that at least our arguments are being listened to.

“One thing is certain: we will all stand together. Either we all go or none of us go, we will not let the council divide us.”

The ruling is a blow to Basildon Council, which is also facing other legal action that could further prolong its 10-year battle to clear the site, expected to cost £18m.

Dale Farm residents won a last-minute injunction stopping the council clearing their homes on 19 September, when they were preparing for bailiffs to enter the site.

Another hearing will take place on Thursday.

Picture Gallery: Dale Farm traveller protest

The travellers also plan to seek a judicial review on the grounds that eviction is “disproportionate” under human rights laws.

On Sunday night the travellers’ supporters called on Basildon Council representatives to “return to the negotiating table”, saying that continuing the action will only see costs spiral even.

Campaign group Dale Farm Solidarity said several high-profile figures had offered to mediate, including bishops Thomas McMahon and Stephen Cottrell, UN representatives and local MEP Richard Howitt.

Kate O’Shea, from Dale Farm Solidarity, said: “We call on Tony Ball (council leader) to return to the negotiation table.

“The situation at Dale Farm needs a sensible and common sense approach and we urge all parties to use this pause to find an amicable solution.”

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