A Barnstaple mother fears her children might be taken away from her if she cannot find a new home in the town.

Jenny Beckham, 36, fell into debt with her landlord after her business partner died and his finances – including her wages – were tied up in probate.

Now she has been evicted from her privately-rented property and is desperately trying to secure housing for herself and her five children living at home while she pieces back together her own business.

But Jenny claims she has been told by a housing association that they may only be able to find a suitable home for her in Exeter or Plymouth, due to the fact she is categorised as ‘in desperate need’.

Jenny has five children living at home, from ages eight to 19, and said one of her daughters has mental health issues and has taken two years to settle into her current school.

She is also in the process of getting her taxi licence which will only be valid in North Devon.

“If I have to move away from Barnstaple then I worried I will go bankrupt and my children will be taken away,” said Jenny.

“My daughter has mental health issues and my son has ADHD and moving them will be very difficult for them both.

“My daughters are willing to all stay in the same room, we don’t need a five-bedroom house, as long as we can stay in Barnstaple so I can continue working.”

Desperate and less than two-weeks from her eviction date, Jenny turned to Barnstaple town councillor Val Monk for help.

Cllr Monk said she felt like she was ‘hitting her head against a brick wall’ trying to find an answer to the situation.

“I’m finding this very frustrating because I cannot seem to find the answer for her,” said Cllr Monk.

“When she came to me she was just in tears. It’s heartbreaking.

“I’m hoping someone out there might read this who has a property they could offer to help.

“She’s working and she spends her time driving people to Exeter and back for their chemotherapy treatment and taxi-ing special needs children.”

Cllr Monk is appealing to any landlords who might be able to offer suitable accommodation in Barnstaple for Jenny and her family to contact her on 01271 372802.