Occupy protesters told to leave Christchurch park

8:51 pm on 22 March 2012

The last Occupy Christchurch protesters will abandon their campsite in a city park by the end of the weekend.

Christchurch City Council on Thursday decided to evict the campers from South Hagley Park.

The protesters have been in South Hagley Park since October 2011 as part of the global Occupy movement.

A spokesperson for the Occupy group, Rik Tindall, says after learning of the council's decision the remaining dozen campers met and agreed they would leave by Sunday.

Mr Tindall says three council staff members visited the site Thursday and offered advice on alternative accommodation.

He says the group have asked if there is another location they can move to, so they can stay together.

The Canterbury District Health Board, which complained that campers' behaviour was causing issues at the nearby hospital, says it is looking forward to their moving on.

Mr Tindall says with winter about to arrive the campers accept the park is not a great place to live, but without assistance many would not be able to find somewhere suitable to go.

Mayor Bob Parker said the council accepts the issue is essentially about homelessness, and has asked the appropriate social agencies to visit the camp to help people to find accommodation.

However he said the occupation is illegal, and the campers will have to go.