Exmouth scheme delayed

PUBLISHED: 02:01 30 June 2008 | UPDATED: 09:12 10 June 2010

AN Exmouth businessman has welcomed the county council's plan to go back to the drawing board before pedestrianising Chapel Hill. Bentley's Garage managing director John Bentley said Devon County Council's plans revealed this week - to put on hold its p

AN Exmouth businessman has welcomed the county council's plan to go back to the drawing board before pedestrianising Chapel Hill.Bentley's Garage managing director John Bentley said Devon County Council's plans - revealed this week - to put on hold its proposal to demolish the Chapel Hill roundabout to make way for a community space would give the council a chance to thoroughly re-examine the area before implementing any changes.He said he hoped the council and planning officers would take on board the views of the local traders and the public when drawing up new plans and deciding the way forward.Mr Bentley's views came after the county council announced it is to delay its plans because a consultation process to pedestrianise The Strand could impact on traffic management throughout the whole the town - including the Chapel Hill.Mr Bentley, whose petrol sales could dwindle if the changes go ahead and who recently gained the backing of hundreds of Exmouth residents who were opposed to the changes, said it was important the council explored all avenues before coming to a final decision."I am here all day, every day, and see how the lorries and cars move. "I am all in favour of doing something to enhance the town, providing it links the whole of Exmouth and not just bits here and there," said Mr Bentley. The county council revealed the changes to delay plans to link the route between the town centre and the seafront on Monday. Although it said proposals for Chapel Hill received widespread support at public consultation in March 2003, recent consultation with the business community has raised a number of issues and objections. County councillor for Exmouth, Littleham and town Eileen Wragg, said: "There was widespread support for the Chapel Hill proposals at the planning stage, but the situation has changed since the original consultation. "It is now recognised that the town centre road system needs to be looked at holistically."Councillor Margaret Rogers, Devon County Council executive member for environment, added: "The consultation on the potential for a £2million enhancement of The Strand may well result in changes that will have an effect on Chapel Hill. "It would be wise to delay making decisions on Chapel Hill until the proposals for The Strand are clearer."Comment on this story at www.exmouthjournal.co.uk

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