Consultation pledge over demolition threat

Queens Drive Exmouth masterplan

Queens Drive Exmouth masterplan - Credit: Archant

The new Queen’s Drive Leisure Area would see the demolition of most of the existing Queen’s Drive businesses to the east of the old lifeboat station to the cricket club.

But existing tenants would continue to be fully consulted on the plans council bosses have pledged.

Outline plans for a new £10million ‘Queen’s Drive Leisure Zone’ have been drawn up by East Devon District Council and submitted - and in theory could include a waterports centre, a large indoor and outdoor play and recreation area, retail areas, a public square and parking for over 200 cars.

In theory the current rowing club site would be converted into a 20-space car park, with the club, thanks to a recent grant, occupying a refurbished old RNLI boat house in front.

While the existing Harbour View café and National Coastwatch tower would be refurbished or rebuilt.

On the western side of the area, to the east of the old RNLI boat house, the existing Fun Park would make way for a pay-to enter play and recreation facility, which would stretch to the eastern edge of what is now Jungle Fun.

This would sit next to the first of two indoor adventure centres, currently part of the Arnold Palmer Miniature Golf Course.

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Behind the play and reaction park would be a 60-space car park and gardens and behind that a hotel, along the western boundary of the Madeira Bowls Club which would stay intact.

The area in front of the bowls club would host a second indoor adventure centre with a 250- space car park occupying much of where Jungle Fun and the amusement arcade is now.

In front of this would be the newly diverted Queen’s Drive, set back from its current position by up to 40 metres.

The current Queen’s Drive would be diverted down what is now the Madeira Bowls club/cricket club access road, before rejoining the existing carriageway at the current western edge of the Fun Park.

In front of the road would then be several zones occupying the coach and car park in front of the amusement arcade.

This would include a watersports centre, with a teaching area, shops and amusements, a gallery, a plaza, a watersports store, adventure golf and cycle parking before leading to the dunes and the beach.

A council spokesman said: “Existing tenants, whom East Devon District Council have remained in close contact with, are also being encouraged to put forward their own detailed proposals at this stage.”