Seeing red over Green

PUBLISHED: 02:01 24 April 2008 | UPDATED: 09:00 10 June 2010

A NEW flowerbed on Budleigh Salterton's Green could prove a blooming nuisance to this year's gala week events. Traditionally, throughout gala week, the town heads for The Green, where a host of activities and events, organised by the town's Lions club, a

A NEW flowerbed on Budleigh Salterton's Green could prove a blooming nuisance to this year's gala week events. Traditionally, throughout gala week, the town heads for The Green, where a host of activities and events, organised by the town's Lions club, are held.But this year that could change because the district council has decided to create a new flowerbed in the middle of the grass - where most of the events take place.Gala week organisers and town council members are angry about the district council's decision - claiming the town was not consulted about the work.The district council said it had liaised with the town's Britain in Bloom committee and aimed to 'enhance the look of the town' with a display of magnolias for this year's entry. "A small patch of grass, some 50 square metres, near some other trees, has been sprayed and will now die off. There is plenty of space on The Green - 2,800 sq metres - for the Gala Week display without using this small patch of ground," said a district council spokeswoman.Budleigh Salterton mayor councillor John Shiel said he contacted the district council to persuade them to move the flowerbed to a different site on The Green, but was turned down."It's totally ignorant," he said."When I spoke to the council, I was told if they wanted to put a flower bed in there, they could because they were in charge and they can do what they like."I asked them to move it to the higher ground and explained that the Gala Week launch goes on there and it takes up all the space."Fete chairman, Lion Alan Lowe said: "We are not very happy about the situation. As far as I am aware The Green was given to Budleigh Salterton by Lord Clinton for the pleasure of the townsfolk. "When East Devon District Council took over, they were just looking after it on our behalf."There are plenty of other areas that could be used for a flowerbed."Town council clerk Jo Vanstone added: "East Devon District Council is riding roughshod over us."Every year hundreds of families flock to The Green for Gala Week. The opening procession from the town - led by Budleigh's royal family - the popular dog show, the children's fancy dress parade, sports, stalls and sideshows are all held on the flat area of grass, which is currently under threat.

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