Official materials from Dale Farm bailiffs refer to gypsies as “pikeys”

Official materials from the bailiffs tasked with the removal of residents from Dale Farm travellers’ site in Essex refers to gypsies using the pejorative term “pikeys”, Scrapbook can reveal. The word, which has been viewed by British courts as racist, appears in a list of phrases used by Constant & Company to drive traffic to their website.

Described as the UK’s “most notorious anti-traveller bailiff firm”, the Bedfordshire-based company has been awarded a contract, thought to be worth more than two million pounds, to evict 86 families. The group lost a High Court appeal to stay in their homes after consistently being denied council planning permission for pitches on land which they have owned for ten years.

Is this appropriate terminology for use by a public contractor?


  1. GrumpyCockney says:


  2. Digital Scotsman says:

    The eviction should be put on hold while the council appoints a new bailiff company

  3. Lou says:

    No it’s not appropriate terminology and one would hope this material is being forwarded to the relevant authorities to be dealt with in light of the UN recommendation regarding Dale Farm?

  4. Chris says:

    If proved beyond a reasonable doubt, then fair enough, do not allow that bailiff company to be used, and ensure that they are investigated thoroughly. This does not give reason to cancel the site clearance.

    If i need to ship a package, and find out Delivery Company A is dodgy, or for some reason do not want to use them, then i call Delivery Company B and send my package. I do not question whether i should send the package at all. That’s just silly.

  5. Darren says:

    Scumbags is the word I’d use, they’d have the eyes out your sockets if you’re not looking. They are the racists, they hate us, think we are stupid, and see kindness as weakness. The Irish gov. kicked them out due to public demand, they are a bad lot.

  6. Those meta tags are for search engines’ benefit. The fact is that the word ‘pikey’ is still in common usage to refer to travellers, and so many who are looking for bailiff services in evicting/removing travellers will use the term, like it or not.

    Don’t shoot the messenger.

  7. me says:

    Completely agree with ‘Vir Cantium’.

    People will still use google to search for the term pikey. They have just included it in their search terms so their result gets returned.

    Every website does things like this.
    The article title and pictures are very misleading. Makes you think they were referring to them as pikeys when they were not.

    It’s just a search term. It does not state that they have used it in any documents to called them pikeys.

    Great way to kick up a fuss with the misleading headline.

  8. tomtreasure says:

    ‘Pikey’ was NOT recognised by the UK Courts as a term of ‘racial’ abuse- yes, the man in the court case cited was CHARGED with two things, but he was only found guilty on one count – assault. It does not follow therefore, that the term ‘Pikey’ has been recognised as ‘racist’ by Courts in the UK.

    Secondly, these words appear only in the ‘meta tags’ – they are not visible to the public, but are used to reflect ‘keywords’ that might be used by members of the public to find a firm who can implement a lawful eviction involving certain types of people – ‘New Age’ and ‘Traveller’ being others used. I don’t see this is inappropriate for anyone, for reasons set out in the first paragraph.

  9. Brian Black says:

    I agree with Vir Cantium.

    As for using a pejoritive term “to drive traffic to their website”; a quick analysis of this page shows that using the word ‘pikeys’ in both the title and body text is getting search engines’ attention, as is using the term as an anchor tag. Both of these uses matter more to search engines than meta keywords. You are also using ‘pikeys.png’ which is also being picked up by the search engines too.

    Throwing stones in glass houses, PS?

  10. Laurence says:

    @tomtreasure: What are you talking about? He admitted it:

    In December, at Lewes Magistrates’ Court, Lee Coleman, 28, admitted using racially-aggravated threatening words and behaviour after a row with a nightclub manageress. He had told her: “I’m not paying you, pikey.”

    I understand that this is supposedly for search engine optimisation. But do they suppose their major clients (councils and large land owners) will be Googling using the term “pikeys”? Modern search engines disregard keywords, largely. This reveals more about the firm and what language is acceptable to them, in my view, than it does about SEO.

    Can you use the same excuse for the terms “paki” or “wog”?

  11. Brian Black says:

    “But do they suppose their major clients will be Googling using the term “pikeys”?”

    Do you suppose the people who are interested in the number 2 left-wing blog will be Googling using the term ‘pikeys’?
    Why use ‘pikeys.png’, rather than another image title? ‘keywords.png’ or ‘racist.png’ or ‘meta.png’ for example. Does that say something about the attitudes of people running this blog? Using the term within the blog text has context, using the term in the image title does not.

  12. Digital Scotsman says:

    There are plenty of stories from travellers of the racism of this company.

    BUT EVEN if we disregard them – we can see from these search terms that Constant and Co are actively courting the business of racists to make money

    As for Pikey not being a racist word? That is like saying that ‘Paki’ is just short for Pakistani!

  13. mike hoyle says:

    It should be made clear at every opportunity that the only law the travellers are breaking is that they cannot build or stay indefinately, as the lifestyle they have chosen is as a traveller. I suppose they bought the land as a pitching place that they could leave and return to.

  14. tomtreasure says:

    Intent is important in law – for example the ‘N’ word – so we’re told – is perfectly acceptable B on B. Travellers seem to use ‘gorgios’ as an insult – its not a descriptor of an ethnic group, or of racial characteristics, and neither is ‘pikey’.

    Laurence – a newspaper summary is NOT the same as the official transcript of a court case.

  15. A Planner says:

    “The group lost a High Court appeal to stay in their homes after consistently being denied council planning permission for pitches on land which they have owned for ten years.”
    Oh no, people bought land built things and failed to get retrospective planning permission, colour me shocked.

  16. tomtreasure says:

    @Digital Scotsman – following your logic, if ‘paki’ were just short for ‘pakistani’, then this company would have used the word ‘Piks’? There is a difference between making the sign of a clenched fist in a photograph, and making a fist and waving it at someone whilst uttering threats to hit them.

  17. Digital Scotsman says:

    @tomtreasure – is that legal precedent? How fascinating (genuinely)

    If that is so, it is clear that it is not being used by travellers to refer to travellers but by people who don’t like travellers to destroy their homes… If intent is important then this case must surely be seen as racist

  18. tomtreasure says:

    @ Brian Black
    “You are also using ‘pikeys.png’ which is also being picked up by the search engines too.”

    Throwing stones in glass houses is exactly what this is – doubt if I’ll bother to report this site to the owners and have it taken down with ‘racist content’ – although someone else might.

  19. tomtreasure says:

    @ Digital Scotsman

    this site uses ‘pikey.png’ itself – is there any Racist intent here?

  20. tomtreasure says:

    According to Wiki:

    “Pikey is a pejorative slang term used mainly in the United Kingdom[1][2] to refer to Irish Travellers, gypsies or people of low social class. Pikey is also sometimes called a piker in the United States, but a piker in Australia and New Zealand means someone who refuses to do something within a group.”

    Perhaps the Bailiffs were using it in the context of ‘people of low social class’ ? The tags are general, so even in this useage, they would not have made any direct connection with the residents of Dale Farm, so it doesn’t appear ‘racist’. They just evict people of a ‘low social class’.

    Whether you think thats a noble way of earning a living or not is another matter -

  21. tomtreasure says:

    Article discussing the word ‘Pikey’ in the New Statesman as a synonym for ‘common’ as long ago as 2005, available here:
    – again,whether its socially desireable/acceptable to use ‘common’ in a derogatory way is a separate argument.

  22. I agree with Vir Cantium too. Metatags can also include words that you don’t personally approve of, but help people find your site.

  23. Rob Brown says:

    Tom Treasure posts to much.

  24. [...] That prejudice appears to be shared by the authorities seeking to evict the travellers from Dale Far…. [...]

  25. Ethan says:

    Quite right. It’s wrong to refer to squatting benefit sucking scumbags as Pikeys. Even though it’s been in general usage in England and even Essex since at least 1547.

    May I suggest usage of an alternative term….’oxygen thieves’.

    Incidentally is it OK with Vanessa Redgrave is anyone buys any old bit of land anywhere and sticks up a shoddily built Tower block without meeting any building regulations? Seems so. One law for us another for a self defined group of special people.

  26. Sally Shears says:

    They are fucking pikeys. What’s the problem?

  27. dizzy says:

    Surely the Bedfordshire-based company should be described as “the most notorious anti-slavery bailiff firm” given where they’re based?

  28. peter white says:

    I do not think it matters what you call them , theiving, violent, anti-social tax dodging , arrogant, gang of con men and ner-do wells. They have homes in Ireland, they only come to england to thieve and our politicians let them get away with it.

  29. [...] [1] Judge Justice Collins comments in 2008 (1) “I have seen video footage which shows how the bailiffs employed by the council acted. The conduct was unacceptable and the evictions were carried out in a fashion which inevitably would have led to harm of those affected.” [2] [...]

  30. jason says:

    get them out, if they want to live somewhere obey the law like we all want. we should just drag them out. if they dont then i might just build a house in downing street and say I have nowhere to go? and they are pikeys!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  31. Steh says:

    I do not think it matters what you call them , theiving, violent, anti-social tax dodging , arrogant, gang of con men and ner-do wells.[/blockquote>

    Sounds like a reasonable description of bailiff companies.

  32. sweeney says:

    @Digital Scotsman
    “There are plenty of stories from travellers of the racism of this company”
    Isn’t that to be expected. Travellers are happy to use any laws that suit them but disregard all the others. Get real

  33. Anadin Extra says:

    pikey might not be appropriate. Neither is ‘traveller’ as apparently they just buy some land, whack a couple of hundred caravans on it, build walls between each van then cry when people/council/land owners object. If they were travelers they should have to travel and vbe forced to move on every few days. At least then there would be a reason to provide places for them to park short-term. Just because you live in a caravn doesn’t mean you aren’t subject to the same planning permission as anybody else.

  34. Jules says:

    Well bearing in mind they deal with pikey scum, then yes it is entirely appropriate! They should think about adding gyppo to the keywords as well!

  35. Proud Mum says:

    Pikey is the most appropriate word for these scum. My daughter used to have a Saturday job in a local fashion store and was horrified to find a pile of faeces in the corner of the fitting room after these filthy people had been in to try on some clothes. Try cleaning up something like that and having a good impression of these awful people. We now have a relocated family living in our Avenue from Dale Farm and they leave shopping trolleys in the road after they have brought home their shopping but after getting the £1.00 out of the slot. They completely disregard all rules and should be shipping back to Ireland on the first boat.

  36. Richard says:

    “The Irish gov. kicked them out due to public demand, they are a bad lot.”

    Bullshit, Darren. I’m just back from two weeks in Ireland and no shortage of travellers there. Yours is nothing but blind, ignorant and backward prejudice.

  37. Richard says:

    Proud Mum, if I often find shopping trolleys with the coin prised out left in the car park opposite my home – abandoned there by non-travelling folk, people who you would no doubt consider to be eligible members of society, just as every Sunday morning as I go to pick up the papers I have the displeasure of walking past piles of puke and drying streams of putrid piss deposited there along with fastfood debris by similar eligible members of society who have no doubt toiled hard all week in order to enjoy a well deserved evening of fun. From my description, you’d be forgiven for thinking I live in a rough, deprived inner city area. But no. Welcome to respectable, middle-class, home-owning suburbia.

  38. Keith Martin says:

    I thought that contracts made by public bodies, if over a preset level had to be put out to tender, throughout the EU.

  39. PaulN says:

    how is there a debate. ‘Pikies’ of the variety that infest parts of Essex like a cancer are neither gypsies nor people. They are the thieving, drunken, worthless human waste that Ireland has always been glad to see the back of. They do not live or act like human beings, they defacate in peoples gardens, they steal everything that is not nailed down, and they fight every time they are exposed to the smallest amount of alcohol. ‘Richard’ , you liberal loser, these observations are from the disgusting experience of being exposed to the ‘people’ that you are so keen to represent. Do you have enough land or spare income to support these things? I’d love to see apologist rubbish like you held directly accountable for the cost of supporting the human waste you love so much. Put your money where your mouth is (instead of taxpayers money), and get some of these scum living in your front garden…

  40. an unfortunate one says:

    I read comments from people with all sorts of views regarding Travelers or simply put Irish Gypsies…all i can say to the people who defend these so called “human beings”, is simply…..
    try living next door to them, it has been my misfortune for the past 5 years. it is a private estate and the elderly folks next door died, their house was put up for auction and an out of town landlord purchased it, needless to say he tents it out via the social services and this family of b…….s live in it (easy money for the ladlord).
    I have had many meetings with the police and council with the anti social behavier unit, to which nothing but nothing has been done, the list of obscenities used by these “people” along with spitting constantly, damage to vehicles in the street and other peoples property as well as my own is endless, i have even had human excrement smeared all over my car. The usual response by the authorities to complaints is “these people have rights” …i was even told by the police to shut my front blinds when i told them that the gypsies constantly stood outside my house sticking fingers up and shouting obscenities… close your blinds ,,, oh and dont take photo`s…that will only make them worse………. i have had enough and now plan to sell up and go…..the gypsies it seems have all the rights and we the English have none, even with one in jail and another on suspended sentence it does not change anything, the unrelated offences for these carry no weight regarding the street and its people…..THE SOONER SOME IMPORTANT GOVERNMENT MINISTER OR BETTER STILL THE PM WAKES UP TO THESE PEOPLE AND SENDS THEM ALL BACK TO WHERE THEY CAME FROM THE BETTER

  41. Pie Muncha says:

    “Travellers are happy to use any laws that suit them but disregard all the others. ”


    The legal decision to force these thieving inbreds to leave Dale Farm was vitally important. If they had won it would have given carte blanche to any other tribe of pikeys to set up home wherever they liked and bollocks to the planning laws. Now that their legal challenge is finally over they must be evicted with all due haste. I’m no fan of bailiffs but I’ll make an exception in the case.

  42. [...] that the Council has hired to carry out the eviction. The company known as Constants and co, uses “pikey, pikies” as search engine metadata – keywords used for finding them via search engines. They label themselves as [...]

  43. Anti racist says:

    A few facts

    I think you will find that the terminology and the derogarty use of word PIKEY is infact RACIST….NOV 2011 FACT….A gardener was charged using the word PIKEY and the courts have NOW reconised that infact the word PIKEY is a racist term for Gypsies and travellers.

  44. lizzy says:


  45. maisie1959 says:

    most commenting on here are racists, fact, look at your own communitys, drug induced filthy rotten scum. and for your information gorgia means non traveller, not derogatory, not racist, simply non traveller, not in the same league as pikey. You peole are the pot calling the kettle black, do you not read your papers, or watch the news, it is your own type who is the rotten scum, murderers child abusers, tax evaders, shall i continue, the list goes on and on, the prisons are heaving with lawless settled scum , why, then have you the affrontery to insult travellers, who have far higher morals than you, are cleaner and superior in every way, as for the woman who claimed that the changing rooms were used as a toilet, well I say you are a liar, just more rubbish coming out of rubbish racist mouths

  46. SINDEXTER says:

    free loading parasites who’s only income is crime , you have no right to any land , you should have to work and pay taxes like every one else before your entitled to claim any land! and even then you must buy it not STEAL it !


  47. I8Pikeys says:

    Oh dear, there really are some retards posting on this thread.

    – no he won’t, because he doesn’t exist. Hope this helps.

    maisie1959: “…travellers, who have far higher morals than you, are cleaner and superior in every way”

    Mmmm, not based on the evidence left by the ‘hugely moral’ travellers who settled on the municipal football pitches a few hundred yards from where I live – this included gas bottles, furniture, animal & human shit, fire damage and broken glass. This is to say nothing of the local crime wave – houses burgled, cars broken into – that co-incided with the arrival of this human refuse, and mysteriously ended when the scum were evicted.

    The simple fact is this: pikeys are vermin and no-one likes them because their arrival anywhere heralds a period of crime and destruction which only ends when the authorities have the balls to send them on their way.

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  49. Smart, but entertaining, as are many of your blogs.
    I read through the archives over the last few days, and I
    must say I think I’m found a new bookmark.

  50. Slacker says:

    So what? They *are* pikeys.

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