“SQUATTERS have invaded brand new £300,000 houses after a legal ruling banned residents from moving into their own homes.
The luxury family homes, which have already been bought, are still unoccupied after a bitter row over an access road erupted. …
… Developers Persimmon and Redrow are jointly building 500 properties on the Yew Tree Hill estate, which is on the outskirts of Droitwich, Worcs.
But a dispute broke out last February between the companies and Wychavon District Council.
Planners had initially agreed for 188 finished homes to be occupied before an access road on the A38 leading to the estate was completed.
But the council became concerned the roadworks were not on track to be finished properly so it took the developers to court.
They then secured an injunction banning any more people from moving into the properties until the access road was widened.
Residents say no new homes have been built for months and the completed houses have become a haven for squatters.
‘THEY’VE LIED TO US’
Retired police officer Mark Naylor, 52, who moved into one of the first homes with wife Dawn, 51, in December 2017, said: “There has been crime on the estate with people breaking into unoccupied houses.
“Vans have turned up with people trying to break down fencing and get inside to try and take whatever they can.
“Homeless people are sleeping rough in the houses.
“I do feel sorry for people who have put down deposits but can’t move in.
“Persimmon are happy for the residents to just soldier on. They’ve lied to us.”
‘OVERRUN WITH SQUATTERS’
Another resident living in the finished side of the development added: “It’s a nightmare.
“The estate is being overrun with squatters and gangs targeting the empty houses.
“Sometimes at night you can hear them trying to snap the locks on the fences around the empty houses and sometimes the sound of glass breaking.”
The resident says “squatters and undesirables” have “exploited the window of opportunity created by the legal row”.
They added: “It must be torture knowing you’re dream home is being abused by squatters and rough sleepers while you’re powerless to do anything to stop it.
“It’s not right. The developers aren’t interested and the people who already live here and those waiting to move in have been hung out to dry.”