• Mass rally in Sidmouth in protest at The EDDC Steamroller

    15th October 2012 | News | Claire
  • Campaign group, Save Our Sidmouth will host the rally and is inviting people from all over the district to join in.

    Anger at the influence East Devon Business Forum has wielded over planning decisions, including the local plan, is one of the reasons behind the march.

    Many residents are furious at plans for a 12 acre industrial estate at Sidford.  Plans to sell-off EDDC’s offices at Knowle and build over its parkland (planning application to be determined next month) is also creating a furore in the town.

    Exmouth residents feel very let down over EDDC councillors pushing the selling off of the Victorian Elizabeth Hall on the seafront.  Now plans have been approved for its demolition and building of a four storey Premier Inn.

    Earlier this year a planning application for a two storey glass cafe was approved at Budleigh Salterton, also on the seafront, despite a large protest from residents.  A legal challenge against 400 dwellings approved at Cloakham Lawns, Axminster, begins at the high court, later this year.

    These sorts of decisions seem to be happening more and more often – and far from making sense – it appears to me that councillors are set on flogging off EDDC’s assets to the highest bidder, without a care for residents wishes or the environment.

    Proposals in the local plan for a vast swathe of industrial land seem to be based on information provided by East Devon Business Forum and will unncessarily damage our countryside.

    Fortunately, the influence of East Devon Business Forum will now be looked into, at a set of meetings starting on 11 December.

    The rally will take place on Saturday 3 November, at 11am, starting from Port Royal – the eastern end of the seafront.

    I will certainly be there.  And the more people that attend the more The Steamroller that is EDDC will be forced to take notice.

    The huge majority (43 out of 59 councillors) ruling conservative group cannot continue to ignore public opinion and expect to get re-elected.

    More information can be found at http://saveoursidmouth.com/

    Photograph:  Media at the Communities Before Developers march against the Local Development Framework in November 2010.