Judge warns woman to clean farm or risk jail

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A Bardwell resident, whose farm was used as a dumping ground for vehicles, machines and rubbish, has been warned by a High Court judge to clean it up or risk going to jail.

Mother-of-three Marie Reynolds insisted her ex-husband, Robert Reynolds, and others were responsible for the rubbish-strewn state of Bardwell Hall Farm.

Despite being the farm’s legal owner, she said she was so terrified of her ex that she was effectively powerless to remedy a long history of planning breaches.

For more than 15 years, St Edmundsbury Borough Council and Suffolk County Council battled to clear the land, issuing five planning enforcement notices between 1997 and 2007.

In October last year, the councils won an injunction against Reynolds, her husband and others. But Reynolds appealed to the High Court saying she had no control over the farm.

Her lawyers argued her injunction amounted to a violation of her human right to respect for her privacy and family life.

On Tuesday, part of the injunction, relating to Great Carr Wood – which Reynolds does not own – was overturned but the injunction was otherwise upheld.