Futures Forum: District Council: annual meeting >>> Wednesday 27th May
Futures Forum: Knowle relocation project: "There are some important questions to be answered."
Council minutes for 27 May 2015 Annual Council - East Devon
... and at the extraordinary meeting this week:
Futures Forum: Knowle relocation project: extraordinary District Council meeting >>> Wednesday 3rd June >>> "crunch time"
... the District Council will be pressing ahead with its decision to relocate:
Futures Forum: Knowle relocation project: extraordinary District Council meeting >>> Wednesday 3rd June >>> reports
Futures Forum: Knowle relocation project: and the 'delivery of information'
There are more reports in the media meanwhile:
Last-ditch move to derail council office move fails | Western Morning News
Angry exchanges in Sidmouth as council debates motion to block office move for six months | Exeter Express and Echo
Sidmouth Herald: Bid to delay relocation by six months is defeated | East Devon Alliance
There are several pieces from Save Our Sidmouth, including:
Provisional relocation/Knowle sale timetable | Save Our Sidmouth
“Strong economic case” for excluding Knowle car parks from developer deal
June 5, 2015 by sidmouthsid
The old guard of EDDC Councillors (with a few new faces) have this week refused the new Independent Councillors’ call to delay relocation for six months to enable proper consideration of what MP Hugo Swire has called “more intelligent ways” of using the Knowle site.
But could EDDC, literally, profit from ‘intelligent’ options from Opposition Councillors and from the public , such as two cited here, summarily dismissed at the June 3rd meeting?
1. Cllr John Dyson’s suggestion that twin sites at Exmouth and Sidmouth (newer offices only) could be a more cost-effective way forward. The increasing real estate asset of the Knowle site, and mature parkland, would not be damaged.
2. SOS member Richard Eley’s suggestion that there is a strong economic case for excluding the main car parks from the sale to Pegasus, arguing that the car parks would provide a lucrative income stream for EDDC, and offer a huge boost to Sidmouth’s economy.
He compared the car parks, a low maintenance high income asset, with the Thelma Hulbert Gallery in Honiton which he described as ‘haemorrhaging cash to the tune of £150,000 per annum’ and being an expensive old building to maintain. He recommended that the Gallery be sold and the Knowle car parks retained, estimating that EDDC would be better off by at least £200,000 per annum.
He then used EDDC’s own statistics to demonstrate that retaining the car parks would bring 30 jobs to Sidmouth’s economy and boost town centre income by £1.6 million per annum.
Are our majority Party representatives wise to put their trust wholly in unelected officers, to the exclusion of public expertise?
“Strong economic case” for excluding Knowle car parks from developer deal | Save Our Sidmouth
June 4, 2015 by sidmouthsid
There were good speeches by all Councillors for the motion, but the ensuing “debate” largely consisted of a re-statement of entrenched positions.It was noticed that the new District Council Chair, Stuart Hughes, who had just before the election declared himself against the move from Knowle, voted against putting the move on hold.
Several questions were put by the public, including this one by Mike Temple of Knowle Residents’ Association: MT’s Speech for June 3
Others are referred to in this Express & Echo report, which includes photos of the debate: Angry exchanges in Sidmouth as council debates motion to block office move for six months | Exeter Express and Echo
More on June 3rd Relocation debate | Save Our Sidmouth
Which brings to mind this dramatic report from a couple of years ago:
Angry Hughes brands own Tory leaders ‘spineless and arrogant’ - News - Sidmouth Herald
Futures Forum: Transparency and process in East Devon... a summary
Futures Forum: Knowle relocation project: "Committee members agreed by eight votes to none, with four abstentions, that a motion would go to cabinet recommending a professional survey of the building be carried out – not undertaken by EDDC."
Futures Forum: Knowle relocation project: Councillors "in the dark, as no-one within the EDDC hierarchy was telling them anything."