�100,000 returned to Exmouth

The prospect of a visitors’ centre has received a boost after the proposed siphoning off of �100,000 to Seaton - from the Exmouth project - was reversed.

A fifth of the �500,000 money allocated to an Exmouth visitors’ centre, from the sale of Exeter airport, was to be vired – or transferred – to build new toilets at a Seaton visitor centre.

But two u-turns by two councils in little more than two hours saw the money returned back to Exmouth.

Last Wednesday, following representations by county councillor Eileen Wragg, county chiefs decided not to transfer the money. And, at the cabinet meeting of East Devon District Council that evening, councillors cancelled an earlier resolution to demolish the toilets and build new ones as part of a new visitor centre building.

Cllr Wragg said: “For the decision to be referred back to (county) cabinet for reconsideration was unusual, but to reverse the original decision was even more surprising.

“I am pleased indeed Exmouth will not be short-changed in favour of the Seaton Visitors’ Centre.

“That would have been hard to justify, particularly as Exmouth, Devon’s largest town, has not received any airport money for a capital project.”