Updated: Jailed Aylesbury rooftop fugitive was paid just £1,000 for gypsy festival on his land

Errol Clarke on his rooftop in Russell Avenue, Aylesbury
Errol Clarke on his rooftop in Russell Avenue, Aylesbury

A rooftop fugitive accepted just £1,000 to let his land be used for an illegal festival for which he was jailed and ordered to pay nearly £30,000 costs.

Errol Clarke, 49, was sentenced on Monday after he allowed a gypsy campsite to use his land at Pitchcott for the Light and Life Festival, where car crashes, public urination and trespassing took place in August last year.

The case was brought against him by Aylesbury Vale District Council. He was jailed for 110 days and ordered to pay £28,500 towards the council’s legal costs.

The council’s planning enforcement team leader Philip Dales said: ““We are pleased with this result.

“It sends a clear message that the council will not tolerate people using land for unlawful and inappropriate purposes.”

Police had demanded Clarke come forward after he failed to appear in court for his second hearing.

He re-emerged last week when he spent 26 hours on his rooftop at Russell Avenue before finally being arrested.

Neighbourhood Inspector Kelly Glister said it was frustrating for the force when their resources could be better used elsewhere.

She said: “It’s a matter resolved now. It’s something we can move on from and we can focus on matters of more concern for the community.”