Protestors will be forming up outside of Barnstaple County Court this morning (Wednesday) as council seeks to take back land from homeless camp.

A protest is due to form this morning (Wednesday) as North Devon Council moves to evict a homeless camp from Barnstaple.

Last week the Gazette revealed that the two men living at the homeless camp in Seven Brethren had been given seven days to leave.

But North Devon Council (NDC) is due to appear in the county court today at 10am to seek a possession order on the land.

It comes after NDC became aware a fundraising event at the site, involving a bonfire and fireworks, was being advertised.

The event was cancelled, but after NDC learned a small group had still gathered at the camp, it sent in the bailiffs.

Des Brailey said the council hoped that further action would not be necessary.

He said: “Our rough sleeper outreach team has frequent contact with the local homeless community, including the two individuals living at the camp.

“We are continuing to work with them to try and resolve their housing issues and actions have been taken that may lead to them having accommodation.”

However, he confirmed NDC had applied to the county court for a possession order to enable them to take back the land, if the men refused the offers.

Cllr Brailey said: “Despite claims that the council and other authorities do nothing to help the homeless, there is a lot of support available for rough-sleepers.”

He said those at the camp had been offered help from welfare services, including with accommodation, drugs and alcohol, and financial support.

He added: “It is not the case that we don’t care for these individuals, we are working hard to support them.”

Members of Survival Bags - Home and Away have launched a petition to NDC to urge them to save the camp.

Mark Cann, North Devon Labour Party chairman,has also written to the leader of NDC, Des Brailey, urging the council to reconsider its decision.

He said: “I’ve asked the council to talk to the people down there, rather than be heavy-handed.

“We’re tying to do all we can to help them; they have been there for so long, then to suddenly be made to move.”

Supporters are due to gather outside of Barnstaple County Court from 8.50am.