EXMOUTH MASTERPLAN – NOVEMBER 2015
Jill Elson – EDDC Councillor Halsdon Ward
The Masterplan is under constant review regularly by all the elected Councillors (29 in total – Devon County, East Devon and Exmouth Town Councils) that represent Exmouth. Over the last few years we have all listened to opinions of many Exmouth residents regarding potential developments. It is of course our role to listen to everyone and then attempt to reconcile these views including those of the silent majority who do not express their views publicly. The Masterplan was created to improve the economy of Exmouth for the benefit of everyone to extend the ‘season’ which we know can be extremely volatile and to create more job opportunities. The Masterplan is about planning for the future in a co-ordninated and thoughtful way so that businesses can thrive and our Town is sustainable and remains vibrant so that people want to visit, live and work here.
The latest proposals for the Queen’s Drive section of the seafront are constantly changing. All Councillors, representing all parties, have been invited to many meetings to voice their opinions on any plans put forward to agree a way forward. There seems to be some misunderstanding on the actual concept. The road is to be redirected away from the seafront at the old lifeboat station and to exit alongside the Maer (not over it). East Devon District Council is borrowing nearly £1.5 million to move the road and create a larger car park between the Amusement building and Madeira Bowling Club. The pavement alongside the beach will still be there for people to walk along.
After several meetings with Councillors, Grenadier’s outline planning proposal has been agreed and all the necessary work that has to be done for a planning application is now taking place. When it is deposited with East Devon District Council it will be available for public consultation over several weeks before it is considered by the Planning Committee which will take into account all the views expressed on planning matters before they make a decision. This proposal is for a Watersports Centre and the company has already consulted many water users. Moving the road will give safer access to the beach.
The other part of the Queens Drive proposals have not been agreed although elected Exmouth Councillors have been invited to several meetings with and without the company and discussions are still taking place and will continue making sure that all key stakeholders and residents have their say.
The leases were for 7 years and have been renewed on this basis since 1954.Two of these tenants are currently in litigation with EDDC and are going through a court process so Councillors will not be commenting on any of this until this process has been completed.
East Devon has issued press releases constantly to try and keep the public updated. They are still available on the EDDC website. Newspapers have printed a version of all these on a regular basis.