Basildon Council has rubbished claims there are protected species on the Dale Farm site.

Supporters said Great Crested Newts had been found on the site near to Dale Farm House as well as bats living in the roof of a chalet.

But the council said it has carried out surveys and there are no protected species on site.

Tony Ball, leader of the council, said: "There have been suggestions of various protected species being present on site. All relevant surveys and assessments have been undertaken, and such spurious claims only serve to give the travellers’ false hope."