Exmouth seafront temporary attractions extension backed by town council

The Queen's Drive Space in Exmouth. Picture: East Devon District Council

The Queen's Drive Space in Exmouth. Picture: East Devon District Council - Credit: East Devon District Council

Town leaders have backed proposals to give temporary attractions on Exmouth seafront a 12-month stay of execution.

Members of Exmouth Town Council’s planning committee were discussing an application to allow a 12-month extension for the Queen’s Drive Space.

Earlier this year, the area, formerly known as Exmouth Fun Park, was transformed into a live events zone, pop-up food outlets and a Jurassic-themed play park as a way of stopping the site becoming derelict.

The site is earmarked for permanent redevelopment in phase three of East Devon District Council’s seafront regeneration and these temporary uses are due to expire in March 2019.

Seaside resort specialist Wayne Hemingway Designs is currently looking at the results of a survey to determine their vision for the plot as part of ‘phase three’ of the regeneration scheme.

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At a meeting of Exmouth Town Council’s planning committee, members voted to support the application which would see the temporary uses extended until March 2020.

District and town councillor Tim Dumper said: “The key issue is the fact that this is an extension for another year and what we see on the site may well be entirely different after the Hemingway Designs consultation.

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“We all feel that we do need something there and, to some extent, what has been there has been successful.”

Brixington ward Cllr Maddie Chapman added: “A lot of residents in our area think it’s wonderful that we have a play area for the children.”

Cllr Cherry Nicholas said: “What we have to remember is that we are hoping to keep our young families in Exmouth. So we have to provide something for them that is cost-effective and makes them think ‘stay here’.”

Speaking at the meeting, Cllr Fred Caygill raised concerns that the committee might still be dealing with temporary attractions applications in four years time, adding: “My reservation is that what happens at the end of 2019 if we haven’t made any decisions about phase three?

“I do have concerns and worries that we could be here in three or four years time, talking about the same stuff; that said the site has attracted a lot of use.”

East Devon District Council will make the final decision on the application.

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