Exmouth is just a building site

On the Exmouth Guide website, the opening page shows a glorious picture of The Strand Gardens with the flowerbeds in full bloom under beautiful trees with plenty of seats and surrounded by an attractive wall.

I wonder how many holidaymakers arrived this summer after viewing the site and were appalled to discover it now looks more like a bomb site. Far from tranquillity, there is noise dirt and dust. The white, porous paving slabs are a disaster. It is a case of risking life and limb to cross the roads as all the traffic and pedestrian lights have been removed.

Many elderly or disabled residents are unable to walk from the car parks or the few parking spaces left and are unable to access essential amenities such as banks, building societies and solicitors around The Strand or in Rolle Street. The independent traders must have had an enormous struggle to attract customers and keep their premises clean. Will they be compensated for their losses?

Along the seafront things are not ideal, the Exmouth Pavilion has been shrouded in scaffolding and netting for much of the school holidays. Earlier in the summer the shelters opposite were given smart new slates. Was there some urgent need for the work to be done in the height of the tourist season?

At the bottom of Carlton Hill, the unfinished bowling alley looms, adding to the building site that is Exmouth. If it is ever completed, it seems there are no parking spaces for staff and no sign of any provision for the unloading of goods. There has been an unsightly mess at the sea end of Victoria Road by the slipway, for years, surely that could be tidied up, maybe a few flowers or shrubs, even paving slabs, the dreaded white ones would be better than what is there at present.

Exmouth has outstanding natural beauty with its sea, sands, estuary, stunning sunsets and many delightful walks. It is such a shame that recent visitors have not seen it without all the blemishes and, like any home owner wishing guests to see everything clean tidy and looking its best, as a resident it makes me very sad.

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