The Strand; public response 'dissapointing'

COUNTY developers have admitted they were disappointed after their loudly trumpeted public consultation exercise on the upgrading of the Strand garnered just 79 questionnaires from the public.

COUNTY developers have admitted they were 'disappointed' after their loudly trumpeted public consultation exercise on the upgrading of the Strand garnered just 79 questionnaires from the public.

But urban designer Alan Stone at the full council meeting in Exmouth assured councillors that despite the low return from last June's exhibition, they were 'actively' seeking to ensure as many people were consulted as possible.

Devon County Council has allocated �2m towards enhancement of the Strand in Exmouth, with East Devon District Council pledging �1 million.

Hundreds attended an exhibition last summer presenting three options; but few filled in the questionnaire.


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He said: "In hindsight we shouldn't have held the exercise over December - people were distracted.

"We thought that people would be filling them out during the Queen's Speech. In a town of over 30,000 it was disappointing."

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Town councillor Steve Gazzard said: "I'm really disappointed with the response rate we have got.

"Especially because the number of forms that went was immense."

Mr Stone added they were actively seeking to engage with those who hadn't made their views known;

"There was a more elderly profile (at the exhibition)...we need to engage with the

younger generation, starting with the Exmouth Community College's Youth Council."

He added they were also approaching special interest groups, like the Rafa club and disabled and access groups.

So far, he said, the response had revealed a 'golden thread' the relocation of the taxi rank, more green space, more seating and more area for events.

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