Exmouth ‘can’t sustain’ more retirement flats

PUBLISHED: 07:00 16 October 2017

The site in Salterton Road where McCarthy and Stone is planning to build 59 retirement flats. Picture from Google Street View.

The site in Salterton Road where McCarthy and Stone is planning to build 59 retirement flats. Picture from Google Street View.

Archant

The number of elderly people moving into new retirement developments in Exmouth is becoming unsustainable, town councillors have warned.

Developer McCarthy and Stone is proposing 59 retirement flats on land to the south of Redgate, next to Tesco in Salterton Road.

Members of Exmouth Town Council’s planning committee were asked this week to reconsider plans for the scheme, which they had previously opposed, after additional information was submitted by the developer about why permission should be granted, on subjects including flood risk and land use policy.

However, councillors voted to continue their previous objections, which were on the grounds that site had been allocated as employment land in the East Devon Local Plan, and they felt Exmouth had reached ‘saturation point’ with developments of this type.

Councillor Brenda Taylor said: “All of that land up from Tesco is allocated as employment land.

“We need jobs here. I think we should again refuse it on those grounds.

“Years of work went into the local plan, and for what?

“They have got five or six properties in Exmouth already, and it’s a huge overload on our services.

“We can’t sustain these older people.”

Councillor Maddy Chapman said that an argument by McCarthy and Stone that employment would be provided by the development was not satisfactory.

She said: “When they say they are supplying jobs, and it’s going to be a care home sort of thing, the qualifications of people they employ, you cannot say it is a care home.

“For those number of flats, to say they are going to employ 15 people, you put them on a rota basis, and it’s absolute rubbish.

“Also we’ve got the other retirement flats being built up Drakes Avenue, so we’ve got two lots of flats going up. Who is going to look after all these people?”

Councillor Fred Caygill said: “If it’s not going to be employment land I would rather see affordable housing on the site, rather than I think probably the fifth McCarthy and Stone development in the town, which we cannot sustain.”

EDDC will rule on planning permission.

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