Villagers were ordered move their cars to allow a 40ft long Gypsy caravan to make its way to a Travellers' site - with a police escort.
Furious residents lined the streets to watch the huge 15ft-wide house squeeze through the picturesque village of South Harting in West Sussex with many refusing to remove their vehicles.
Notes apparently written by police were placed on cars asking owners to move them to make way for the 'abnormally large' mobile home which was on its way to the nearby Three-Cornered Piece Travellers' site about a mile from the village.
Two caravans have occupied the Three-Cornered Piece site since 2009 after Travellers from a village 15 miles away moved in on a bank holiday weekend.
The occupation, a mile north of the larger South Harting, led to a planning inspector’s inquiry, but Eric Pickles’s Department of Communities and Local Government department stepped in to rule the land agricultural.
An appeal is due to go before the Supreme Court, brought by the Travellers who are challenging the ruling made by Mr Pickles' department.
Travellers say the two-bedroom mobile home - thought to cost up to £20,000 - is a 'replacement' for one of the other much-smaller caravans.
A concrete base for it is already laid, even though a retrospective planning application for that and a septic tank has yet to be considered.
The extra wide load - described by police as a 'caravan', by planners as 'a mobile home' - was so wide it could not come down a direct route from the main east-west A 272 road through West Sussex.
Instead, it had to be escorted by police from Petersfield, five miles away, though South Harting’s village square and up a road called North lane where most people don’t have off-road garages and where one resident is thought to be on a skiing holiday.
Notices were placed on villagers' car windscreens two days ago reading: 'Will owners of vehicles please make sure that there (sic) vehicles are removed from these roads until after the abnormal load has passed, which should hopefully be by 2pm Friday'. The mobile home is pictured squeezing past a historic pub police in tow
It arrived in South Harting at 12.45pm this afternoon and reached the Travellers site at 1.15pm.
Parish councillor Chris Healy said: 'No one can understand why the police are escorting this vehicle to commit what is an illegal action.'
Sussex Police, who escorted the load with a police Land Rover and squad car, said: 'At the moment, this is not an illegal site. The court case is pending. We’re blind to the wider sensitivities of the case.
'It’s a haulage company wanting us to escort an abnormal load down a public road where there is a road safety risk.'
As the lorry lumbered by, David Barnard, parish council chairman, said: ‘What we don’t understand locally is that if they are not allowed there, isn’t now the time to stop another vehicle going on the site, instead of helping it?
‘To be fair they keep it very clean and tidy, but the concern is once there is permission for two caravans suddenly there will be 22.’
Builder Joe Newton, 47, said: ‘I’m not at all happy because it is an illegal site and the whole thing is incredibly hypocritical. It is opening the floodgates to something far bigger than a couple of mobile homes.
Earlier, Suzanne Rose, owner of Glam hairdressers, said: ‘It’s going to make all my customers really angry as they can’t park on the street. The police put a letter through the door but they haven’t put bollards out or signs up. It’s not our responsibility to let people know.’
Speaking earlier this week Mr Barnard - also a carpet shop owner - said: 'I have had a notice slapped on my car. I was born and brought up in Harting and I’m desperate to live there again.
'But if I parked a caravan on a friendly farmer’s field the planners supported by the police would be on to me like a shot.'