'It's a town of weeds'

PUBLISHED: 15:48 21 July 2008 | UPDATED: 09:20 10 June 2010

Monday, July 21: BUDLEIGH Salterton is being engulfed by weeds which are proving an eyesore to holidaymakers and residents. Benches in Madeira Walk have been swallowed up in a tangle of weeds and nettles, making it impossible to sit down. And road markings overgrown by

BUDLEIGH Salterton is being engulfed by weeds - which are proving an eyesore to holidaymakers and residents.Benches in Madeira Walk have been swallowed up in a tangle of weeds and nettles, making it impossible to sit down.And road markings overgrown by nettles opposite the cricket club are highlighted in duplicate - where council workers have repainted yellow lines without first cutting back the foliage.Over the past few months Swains Road resident Nick Loman has taken to the town with his camera and photographed a number of Budleigh 'beauty spots' which have been taken over by long grass and nettles.His catalogue of photographs shows the town is falling foul to weeds and nettles along Madeira Walk, Coastguard Road, Stoneborough Lane, Ottervale Road and Granary Lane. Mr Loman, 64, has lived in the town all his life and says the current state of the verges and footpaths is a disgrace.He said he tackled East Devon District Council's new 'champion' team three weeks ago about the weed problem - but was still waiting for action."Madeira Walk is absolutely disgusting. Visitors park in Coastguard Road and walk down to the beach that way. I shudder to think what they think of the town," said Mr Loman. "The yellow lines are a joke really. There are four sets there. If they don't cut back the stingers, there will be six sets next time. It's pretty awful."The town is neglected. We are the poor relations to Sidmouth and Exmouth."During his travels, Mr Loman also noticed a number of the town's benches had disappeared.He said the last remaining Granary Lane bench - just before the beach - had been inaccessible to most people for the past nine months since it was moved from the roadside - because its new location was surrounded by chain railings."The seat had been across the road for 60 years. The only way to get to it now is by climbing over a chain link fence," he said. The district council said a bench at the bottom of Stoneborough Lane had been removed because it was on private land and the owner no longer wanted it there."We will need to investigate the background to the bench opposite the cricket club entrance at the bottom of Granary Lane to identify why it is in its current location," said an EDDC spokesman.The county council was unavailable for comment at the time of going to press.

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