Wednesday, 31 July 2013

One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish: seascape mural

Over two years ago, a community project added some colour at the Ham, on the wall of Bagwell's Fish Shop.
It used to look like this:

Massive kids’ mural for Sidmouth fish shop wall - News - Sidmouth Herald

And now looks like this:

Sidmouth, Devon | Flickr - Photo Sharing! c: Steven Lamb

Sidmouth, Devon | Flickr - Photo Sharing! c: Steven Lamb

Thanks to the generous support of the Keith Owen Fund of the SVA:

Sidmouth mural joy - News - Eastern Daily Press

Louise Cole, who with Sidmouth artist Coco Hodgkinson worked on the seascape mural by the Ham with more than 100 children, praised the fund, saying: 
“It is non-bureaucratic and we really hooked into Keith Owen’s vision and values.”
She said KOF gave a “quick, positive response” to their application.

Fish mural praise
Tuesday, April 26, 2011

SIR - I am writing to say thank you to all the children, parents, grandparents and carers who turned up on Wednesday, April 13, to support the One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish project, to create a fish mural on the side of the Bagwell’s fish shop wall.
We were worried the weather would have put people off, it was very hard to judge the level of interest we would get, but were so pleased, we were a bit overwhelmed with our limited resources! I think the concept of children contributing to a lasting piece of community art was an idea that has captured people.
Thank you to our fabulous team of volunteers who baked delicious cakes, put up (and took down!) four gazebos and helped out all the chilly and rainy day long. Thanks to one of our volunteers, we have created a website to record the project, please take a look at 
We hope the finished wall will be enjoyed by all for years to come. Coco Hodgkinson, our local community artist, has worked so hard to innovate, keep costs down and direct the artistic and environmental vision of the project to include around 145 children – no mean feat! Whilst creating a beautiful design at the same time with matching colour schemes and using real fish from the Bagwell’s shop to cast the fish moulds to create 150 tiles, using only sustainable fish types: Mackerel, John Dory, Plaice and Sprats enlivened with Star Fish.
The Bagwell’s, the Keith Owen Fund and all of you who bought cakes and fish tiles and played Spot the Shark! - courtesy of the National Marine Aquarium (Plymouth) - have enabled us to cover the costs of all the materials. 
In our minds, though, it is much wider than that and hope that, whether you took part or just enjoy it, it is part of the whole community that reflects how gorgeous the place we live in is.
Thank you!
Louise Cole

And last week at the opening of the school holidays, the mural was given a good scrubbing:

Seascape mural gets community clean-up

Friday 26th July 2013

Volunteers who were involved int the original project to create a vibrant seascape mural on the wall of Bagwell's Fish Shop got together on Tuesday evening with brushes and buckets.
The mural was a community arts project led by Coco Hodgkinson and Louise Cole.
The individual fish were cast by Coco and hand painted by the children.
The fish themselves are all sustainable types to raise awareness in the community of the need to conserve fish stocks.
Louise said, 'We have had so many positive comments from passers-by that they love the wall, and the community ethos behind it, it is enjoyed by all and is in a prime spot to brighten up the Ham.'

Home - Sidmouth Herald

Apprenticeships in Sidmouth

Two recent stories in the Sidmouth Herald:

Councillor in apprenticeship appeal

Firms in places like Sidmouth and Ottery St Mary have been urged to consider recruiting young people to help the district bounce back from the recession.
The call has come from EDDC's business champion - who has appealed for experienced staff and the over 50s to get a look in as well.
Cllr Mike Allen was commenting after some encourageing news from a number of different quarters...
Home - Sidmouth Herald 

Business Champion urges companies to recruit staff as economy recovers

Economy and jobs illustrative
Wednesday 24 July

Growing recruitment

Councillor Allen said: “We must also remember that the domestic UK economy has been relatively stable compared with France, Spain, Italy and Greece – which may account for the growing recruitment numbers into our workforce.
“I’m looking to the excellent businesses across our area to help our younger people into work by using apprenticeship subsidies to improve their skills. I’d also urge them to hire in experienced administrative staff to help expansion and retrain them too. Last but far from least we need our experienced older workers to get jobs and I would appeal to businesses hiring staff not be prejudiced about such over 50s since they form the core of reliable and dedicated workers for the future.
“With the Exeter Science Park developing and land for expansion coming available in our proposed Local Plan, there is a special future for businesses in our outstanding environment and community”.

Home builder offers five new apprenticeship roles

A developer that is building in Sidmouth is on the hunt for ambitious young people to lay the foundations of a career in construction.
Persimmon, the South West's leading house-builder, has joined a national recruitment  drive and is looking for up to five new apprentices in brick-laying and joinery...
Home - Sidmouth Herald 

Are you our next Chief Executive?

Our current Chief Executive, Jeff Fairburn (pictured) who is still only 47 years old, started in just this way at 17, so who knows, perhaps you’ll be our future Chief Executive?
Jeff Fairburn, Persimmon Chief Executive
The link at the bottom of this page takes you to our special Persimmon Jobs website where you can apply directly for one of our apprenticeships.
Before you do so, here’s some information that may help you.
Applying for an apprenticeship – a teacher’s guide
Catherine Burton is head of business studies and vocational education at a leading Midlands school. Here’s her handy guide...


Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Knowle relocation: stakeholder event................................ the Futures Forum view

This is the report from the chair of the Vision Group's Futures Forum chair, who attended the District Council's stakeholder event on Knowle relocation last Friday:

No press were present. The meeting confirmed my sense that they wanted to get us on the inside p...ing out, or, to use management speak, form a partnership going forward with key stakeholders, who should have been flattered at being invited into their discussions.
Diviani put it clearly: "The die is cast." No re-examination of capital costs, energy savings etc. but future examination of staff reorganisation, devolution, cooperation with other councils etc. Asked about the democratic deficit in their decision making process he reminded us that we have a representative democracy. He did not mention that one of the main demands of the Chartists 180 years ago was that our elected delegates should be instantly recallable. But that is something we can continue to aim for of course.
On the topic of democracy, one senior cabinet minister spent the coffee break chatting affably to me and confided how frustrating it is when you know what has to be done but there are all the delays involved in the consultative process and democracy.
At the end of the meeting we asked how the Council might avoid the risk of such widespread disaffection with their decisions as would render the district ungovernable (cf. Turkey, Bulgaria, Greece, etc.) and Richard Cohen said this would require good communication which he defined as putting out the information and the arguments. This does miss the point that communication is a two way process, that listening to people can give insights into better ways of working and improve decisions by harnessing the creative wisdom and local knowledge of the people the council serves, or, to use management speak, its customers.

It is very sad - the relocation will require a reorganisation of how and where services are delivered. ITC is an important part of this but no magic bullet. We tried to tell them this could be, not a risk but, an opportunity for a more inclusive way of working at community level, but, not unexpectedly, they would not listen and could not hear.
Robert Crick

"News is what they don't want you to know. Everything else is advertising." (Randolph Hearst)

Cycling: grant bids rejected, but...

The Vision Group has applied for grants to help with the Sidmouth to Feniton cycle route 
... but will have to try again next year for the Coastal Communities Fund bid, the CCF people being very encouraging:
Similarly, it is good news to hear of the Town Council’s interest in the Sidmouth to Feniton cycleway as a long-term project – as it will need as much official engagement as possible if it is to be realised:

See also:

Monday, 29 July 2013

Knowle relocation: stakeholder event.......................... stakeholder views

For other perspectives on the District Council's meeting with stakeholders last Friday:

EDDC’s relocation plans: notes on meeting with ’stakeholders’ (26th July 2013)

The meeting was held last Friday, at the Flybe office at Exeter Airport.
All EDDC Cabinet attended, plus senior officers. There were representatives from Parish and Town Councils and Chambers of Commerce, plus selected organisations termed ‘stakeholders’, including Save our Sidmouth, East Devon Alliance, Vision for Sidmouth’s Futures Forum, Knowle Residents’ Association and others.
Deputy Chief Executive,Richard Cohen, presented the case for moving. Leader,Paul Diviani,  supported him. Options include Cranbrook, Honiton, (2), or possibly Sky Park
Questions followed the presentation. One was from Kelvin Dent, newly elected Sidmouth Town Councillor. As Councillor Diviani had mentioned, for the second time, that relocation would have an impact on the economy of Sidmouth and that steps would be taken to try to mitigate the effect, Councillor Dent asked what those steps would be, bearing in mind the loss of nearly 100 jobs over 10 years and £4.5million of contracts and spend in Sidmouth. He did not receive an answer, but the question was minuted, and will presumably be addressed in due course.
Then several discussion groups were formed, to consider four questions ( quoted verbatim here):
  1. The services received, by residents and organisation; will they change when the office is relocated and could this impact on the organisation and/or people I represent?
  2. The way in which my colleagues and I work with or communicate with the council; how might that change?
  3. What other statutory provisions, government regulations or business activities and financial arrangements, (for example), that you are involved with do you think might be affected?
  4. What concerns, risk or opportunities do you perceive there to be, which would impact on the community that you represent, and it wellbeing(sic). vibrancy or economic effectiveness, or similar

Answers ranged from having a new large multi purpose council chamber to shared services with Exeter City Council ( and new methods of working using IT).  
(SOS has of course already given its strong views on question 4 . See  EDDC Cabinet to look at options for Knowle relocation…But is relocation itself an option? posted 16th July on this website.) .
SOS Chair, Richard Thurlow, commented, “It is clear that Honiton, (through the Chamber of Commerce) is very keen on getting EDDC in the town and is already planning for it (with bus services from the station ,etc…).”
Not much will come of this or subsequent meetings”, he continued. “It was purely a public relations exercise.”
The SIN blog has a more detailed report of the meeting, From our correspondent “Fly Me”, posted 26th July at http://sidmouthindependentnews.wordpress.com

From our correspondent “Fly Me”

26 July

A personal view of an attendee at the “facilitated discussion” on EDDC’s move from Knowle, held earlier this week: 
To the unlikely surrounds of the FlyBe Training centre where EDDC had summoned about 25 assorted parish councillors, business group reps, and members of the East Devon Alliance, Save Our Sidmouth and the Knowle Residents.
We were there for a “facilitated” discussion on the move out of EDDC’s Knowle HQ to … we’re not sure where. Could it be Honiton, maybe Cranbrook? Skypark? Or even, in a wild card move from Exeter City Council’s Karime Hassan, a shared facility with Exeter City Council and Teignbridge. Richard Cohen, main advocate for the sale of the Knowle, dismissed this one “Karime just wants us to help pay for his bus depot”.
On the basis that the dozen EDDC employees were there to remind us that the move is a done deal, the other 25 of us threw in as many helpful ideas as possible. Parking, public transport accessibility, making sure they  build something which still had value if district councils were abolished. Ideas for council chambers, questions on air conditioning, the carbon footprint, what would happen to Streetscene. It was all quite sensible.
The two main attractions were Richard Cohen and Paul Diviani. Cohen put in a sturdy performance with his “moving forwards” and his “future-proofing”, our old friend “outcomes” of course, and a PowerPoint of “What, Why and How” etc. Nobody could really answer the question, who is this move mainly for (i.e., who are the most important  “stakeholders”). Is it the , the council tax payers, the employees, or the good of the economy? Perhaps this is unkind, but the arguments for the council tax payer were somewhere between iffy and unproven, for the general economy, nil, but for the employees, who all seemed shiny, happy people about leaving the Knowle, it’s a winner.
Paul Diviani, kitted out for Sandy Lane, Barbados in a room full of sober dressers, put in a more uneven performance, but it had some chutzpah. He cited as his great past success the setting up of the East Devon Business Forum (we assumed he was trying to get a rise with this one), and then proclaimed the triumph in our neighbour West Dorset, whose new HQ he told us had come in £1 million under budget!
He was less confident when asked where the democratic mandate for this move came from, the biggest decision in the district council’s history. Why was it not in the Conservative manifesto at the 2011 elections?
He had one crack at this, saying that when he’d joined the council in 1999 the move was in the ether and had been deferred for all sorts of reasons. When he became leader he was determined to drive it on. He obviously wasn’t happy with that answer, so he came back an hour later with another one – that politicians were elected and delegated to make decisions etc. He wasn’t elected as a Conservative to be seen wasting tax payers money, and the Knowle was doing that.
Not really an answer to why his party’s A3, full colour, double-sided manifesto did not include in its 6 point “Promise to East Devon” that it would up-sticks, cause huge upset in Sidmouth by at first threatening to build on its entire parkland, rush a vote through at the same time as slipping some more industrial land into the Local Plan, and belatedly announce that £4.8 million would be needed to be borrowed for what was previously said to be self-financing.
Good news? This was jaw-jaw, not war-war. Bad news? Not sure how Paul Diviani or Richard Cohen would score in one of the amazing FlyBe Flight Simulation Modules we saw, but as things stand we’re on a flight to who knows where – and the controls are in the hands of the cabin crew.

Knowle relocation: stakeholder event.......................... District Council view

This is the press release from the District Council:

Knowle relocation: EDDC holds successful stakeholder event

Paul Diviani, left, and Richard Cohen
Friday 26 July
OVER 30 people attended a district-wide event held today (Friday) to brief local organisations and stakeholders about East Devon District Council’s relocation plans.
They heard the rationale for the Cabinet and Full Council decisions to explore options outside Sidmouth because staying at the current headquarters building at Knowle is not considered viable. They were later able to comment and ask questions.
The event on 26 July was held at the Flybe Training Academy and a wide range of organisations were represented including town and parish councils, chambers of commerce, community organisations, neighbouring local authorities and pressure groups.
Delegates were welcomed to the event by Council Leader Paul Diviani, who outlined the financial pressures that EDDC faces, the unsustainable costs associated with running Knowle and the services and customer benefits that the Council is seeking to achieve through relocation.
Precious resources
“Councils are facing an unprecedented level of cuts in their finances as part of the efforts to reduce government borrowing,” said Cllr Diviani. “We have to make sure that we focus precious resources on delivering services to our residents. Our current offices are a drain on our finances. A new purpose built office will allow us to be more effective and efficient so we can deliver top quality services at a price we can afford”.
Deputy Chief Executive Richard Cohen then outlined the principles the council was working to. Namely that any:
•Move to new offices would place no extra burden on Council Tax payers
•New buildings will be flexible, fit for purpose and meet the highest possible energy efficiency standards
•New offices will be accessible and the Council will develop new ways of working to allow customers to access services in the way that suits them best
•New office building/accommodation will maximise the use of space and technology for the benefit of customers and the productive working of staff and councillors.
His slide presentation then went on to cover all the different options that the Council had considered for relocation and why EDDC’s Cabinet had decided that staying at Knowle is not a viable option. The Cabinet decision was endorsed at Full Council on Wednesday 24 July.
High costs
Richard Cohen demonstrated the high running costs of the current buildings at Knowle. He then explained how different options for Knowle had been considered and why none of them would produce enough money to pay for new accommodation. This is because all the options would be a mix of council offices, council parking and housing which are not anywhere near as commercially attractive to developers as a residential-only site would be.
Options for Honiton and Cranbrook were then examined, showing the different potential sites and looking at some of the advantages and disadvantages of each. Mr Cohen confirmed that any new offices will be smaller, flexible and more energy efficient as well as offering better access for customers and delivering a modern working environment for staff and councillors.
He outlined the next steps, which included doing more detailed work on the different Honiton and Cranbrook options and opening negotiations on the various sites.  The timescale for a report back to Cabinet was confirmed as around the end of the year, with any potential move scheduled for July 2016.
Mr Cohen emphasised that the Council was committed to keeping key stakeholders abreast of the decision making process and progress of the project through a district-wide stakeholder group which would meet at points during the project.  
The Council’s clear commitment to equalities was underlined and it was noted that there would be an equalities impact assessment and consultation with equalities partners, particularly through the design phase of the new building.
Delegates were then asked to consider what they thought were most important issues for the Council to keep in mind during any move to new offices and what opportunities might there be to improve services as part of the move. There was considerable discussion of this and the feedback broadly fell into five areas:-
•Creating easy access in person by public transport and enough parking for those who might need to drive
•Delivering new office accommodation should be about new ways of working not just money
•Having more mobile staff, service surgeries and working more closely with town councils
•Delivering more online services and modern customer facilities for those who want to have a face to face discussion
•Keeping people informed of progress
In his closing remarks, Paul Diviani thanked delegates for their contributions. He said he was inspired by the enthusiasm shown by people and their desire to seek the best solution for the district.
Questions and answers from the session will be made available on the Council’s website in due course.
East Devon District Council - News

Sunday, 28 July 2013

Richard Rogers and the housing crisis

Would you like to live in one of these?

Completed - Design for Manufacture / Oxley Woods

Mark II: Can renowned architect Richard Rogers solve the housing crisis?

As housing shortage bites, the architect is having a second crack at a solution


It was hailed as a solution to the housing crisis – cheap, affordable and quick-to-build  prefabricated homes, fashionably designed by one of the country’s leading architects.

But while Richard Rogers’ landmark Oxley Woods development won industry awards for its experimental and environmentally friendly design, mass orders for the off-the-peg homes did not follow, after the project was beset by problems.

Six years on, Rogers’ firm, Rogers Stirk Harbour and Partners (RSHP), is set to reveal an improved “Mark II” version of its pre-fab housing at a Royal Academy exhibition in a few weeks.

The timing is perfect. Amid the grip of austerity, Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander last week committed £3bn to affordable housing to kick-start the “biggest public housing programme for over 20 years”. With it came a demand for 165,000 new affordable homes by 2018 – meaning clever and sustainable designs are not only badly needed, but now, crucially, potentially part-funded by government.

Legoland? His first attempt at affordable housing

Taxi drivers call it Legoland. But the people who live in the multi-coloured prefabricated homes designed by Richard Rogers in Oxley Woods are more than happy with the community it has created.

Built – or, rather, put together – in 2007 by Taylor Wimpey, the award-winning development is home  to graphic designers, architects, hairdressers and IT specialists. Many of the couples are mixed ethnicity, gay or elderly. In a sample survey of residents 18 months after completion  every single one said they would recommend the development to family and friends.  

Rogers was responding to the then Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott’s Design for Manufacture challenge to create a house that could be built from modern materials for £60,000. The 122 homes are designed to be constructed in three days from full-height insulated wall panels, and although there were teething problems with leaks and faulty doors and windows, residents say there is nowhere else they’d rather live.

Mark II: Can renowned architect Richard Rogers solve the housing crisis? - Home News - UK - The Independent

Richard Rogers turned 80 last week: 
The Royal Academy is profiling his groundbreaking work:

Rogers Banner

Richard Rogers RA is one of the most successful and influential architects in the world. He is responsible for some of the most radical designs of the 20th century, including the Pompidou Centre in Paris (with Renzo Piano), Lloyd’s of London and the Law Courts in Bordeaux. 'Inside Out' reveals the man and the ideas behind these pioneering buildings.

Throughout his career, Rogers’ creations have been shaped by political, social and ethical concerns, as well as popular culture, technology, art and urbanism. This blend of influences is manifest not only in his architecture, but also in his roles as a speaker, writer, politician and activist.
Focusing on key projects and using previously unseen archival material, drawings and personal items the exhibition explores his career, from the influence of his Italian family to his impact on how we experience cities today. Visitors will gain an unprecedented insight into this leader of modern design.

To encourage visitors to engage in the debates and issues around architecture today, the final room in the exhibition is a space for dialogue and discussion, events and workshops, where visitors can share their views and hear from high-profile speakers in related fields. 
Also look out for Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners Manufactured House in the courtyard through August until early September. This innovative, flat packed, environmentally efficient home is an example of how new building technologies can help shape better mass housing.

Richard Rogers RA: Inside Out - Exhibitions - Royal Academy of Arts
Design for Manufacture - Oxley Woods (HD) - YouTube
Richard Rogers: Inside Out, at Royal Academy - Telegraph
Richard Rogers at 80: principles and power | Art and design | The Guardian

Richard Rodgers: Inside the mind of a political visionary

Lord Rogers has never been afraid to bring politics into the design debate

“A street is not a road,” proclaims one highlighted statement. “A street belongs to the people and the buildings that enrich it. It is a place. 
A people's place.” Lord Rogers has, uniquely, never been afraid to bring politics – left-leaning in his case – into the design debate. 
But another message in the exhibition declares: “Architecture mirrors society, its civility and its barbarism.” 

Richard Rodgers: Inside the mind of a political visionary - Features - Art - The Independent

Buildings are political, a statement of the relationship between power and the people

How money and amenity contend in our cities

Sunday 28 July 2013

For centuries, caution and a deep historical sensibility has ensured that Britain moves to the future without bulldozing its past. It can, at times, be maddening for most of us. All those damned planners who interfere with your right to do what you please in your home and garden! Who do they think they are? But these are vital arguments and some necessary rules to ensure no development takes place without due care. The new needs to be properly scrutinised and attachment to what has been must also be robustly interrogated.

How money and amenity contend in our cities - Comment - Voices - The Independent

The Red Lion, Sidbury

This is Sidbury's last remaining pub:

A Traditional Bed and Breakfast

We are a local village pub set just a few miles away from the Regency town of Sidmouth. 
With home cooked food served in the evenings at week-ends, as well as light lunches. 
We have four bedrooms and offer both bed and breakfast facilities with evening meals. 
You can also enjoy our great selection of draught and traditional real ales. 
Please call 01395 597313 to find out more.

And it has been voted one of the top pubs in the area:
Last chance to pick your favourite pub | This is Exeter
Claire Wright - Your Independent East Devon District Councillor for Ottery Rural 

Indeed, it is "the highest placed pub in the Competition in the Sid Valley area!":
 The Pub In The Village : Red Lion in Top 10 of Exeter Express & Echo's Pub of the Year Competition

But it is now under threat:

Villagers fight to save their only pub

Thursday, May 16, 2013
By Fran McElhone
A community is rallying together to ensure its village pub is not sold off to a developer and lost forever. The Red Lion in Sidbury has been put on the market by premises owner Punch Taverns.
Neil Anthony, who has been running the pub for five years, has been told by the company his tenancy will not be renewed when it runs out this autumn. The move has sparked concern among villagers who see the pub as their community hub.
Nationally, about 16 pubs are closing every week according to the Campaign for Real Ale. It blames high beer tax and high prices dictated by the companies that own the venues as well as the economic downturn.
A spokesperson for Punch Taverns said the decision was part of a review of its less sustainable venues.
Residents have already set up a Facebook page, Thepubin Thevillage | Facebook, to help highlight their concerns.
Resident John Loudoun, 59, who has been going to the pub for around 15 years, called the meeting. "We've known for some time it may come up for sale," he said. "The worry is that if it is considered not viable, it may be sold on to someone who does not want to keep it as a pub. It's the only pub in the village, which needs a pub which is often the focal point of a community, where people can get together. And there is the potential for it to house other amenities. For example, the village lost its Post Office some time ago. It's a trend we're seeing around the country. That's our biggest fear."
A spokesman for Punch Taverns said: "It is always our preference that our pubs continue to trade as pubs, however we do review our estate regularly and may explore other options around the future of our less sustainable sites, or where they might better fulfil their potential for the local community under different ownership. Following such a review, a decision has been made to put the Red Lion on the open market for sale with our agents Jones Lang La Salle."
For more information visit the Facebook page at, Thepubin Thevillage | Facebook or the blog at  The Pub In The Village
Alternatively follow the campaign on Twitter at ThePubInTheVillage (SaveTheRedLion) on Twitter or to get involved email, thepubin thevillage@gmail.com

The campaign has featured regularly in the Sidmouth Herald:
Villagers back Sidbury pub - Features - Sidmouth Herald
Campaigners organised to save Sidbury pub - Features - Sidmouth Herald
Saving our pub - Letters - Sidmouth Herald

And in the wider press:
Residents fight to save Red Lion pub in Sidbury
View From Online - News from West Dorset, East Devon & South Somerset
Villagers fight to save their 'centrepiece of community' | Western Morning News
Campaign launched to save Sidbury village pub | The Exeter Daily
Sidbury Villagers fight to save historic pub The Red Lion from closure | Exeter Express and Echo
Save the Red Lion in Sidbury | Sidmouth Independent News

Although the current owners have no mention of the Red Lion, Sidbury:
Pub Business | Punch Taverns 

The Red Lion, however, is the 'centrepiece of the community':

Save The Red Lion Campaign
Campaign Patron – Hugo Swire MP

The Red Lion is the only pub in Sidbury village. In response to the announcement that the Red Lion’s owners, Punch Taverns, had put the pub up for sale a packed meeting of over 50 villagers met on 19 May 2013 to express their concerns about the possible implication of this sale on the village.
At the meeting a resolution was agreed -

We agree to establish a Campaign Group with the objective of ensuring that the Red Lion, Sidbury is retained as pub for the community. To support this Campaign we agree to create a Steering Group which is charged with fulfilling this objective. We encourage all those who share the Campaign’s objective to join us.

The Campaign hopes that a purchaser will come forward who has the vision & business objective of making the Red Lion a viable pub for the community in the heart of the village. However, the Campaign must consider what options would be available to allow the Red Lion to be retained in case a purchaser does not materialise or seeks to change its use. The Campaign’s objective is to ensure that the Red Lion is retained as a pub – please support this endeavour.

If you want to support the Campaign & be included in its mailing list, forward your details to – ThePubInTheVillage@gmail.com

Read regularly about the Campaign & related events at - http://thepubinthevillage.blogspot.com

Follow the Campaign on Twitter at – http://twitter.com/SaveTheRedLion

Become a Campaign Facebook friend at –http://facebook.com/thepubin.thevillage?ref=tn_tnmn

Campaign Chair – Fred Burnett

The Red Lion remains open & your custom is most welcome. Sidbury is a pleasant village surrounded by great countryside & there are plenty of wonderful local walks. You can always stay at the Red Lion as part of enjoying your break in the Sid Valley.

The Pub In The Village – Save The Red Lion Campaign dedicated to retaining the pub in the heart of Sidbury village.


The PubInTheVillage website is regularly updated:

From today:
The Pub In The Village : More local & not so local Campaign press coverage
From this week:
The Pub In The Village : Listen to today's Radio Devon Campaign interview

There are some very helpful links to websites offering advice on community finance and business...
Co-operative Mutual Solutions
Community Matters - Home
Norfolk RCC 

And the campaign has taken a further serious step:

Friday, 19 July 2013

A Community Action 1st in East Devon!

Save The Red Lion Campaign has now taken the next & crucuial step of asking East Devon District Council to list the Red Lion as an "Asset of Community Value". This means that if, as we fully expect the District Council to do, it lists the pub as an "Asset of Community Value" then the owner, Punch Taverns, cannot sell the pub at this stage.

By obtaining the listing, which we anticipate should be concluded by early/mid September, then in addition to Punch Taverns not being able to immediately sell the Red Lion, the Campaign can start to properly evaluate whether it wants to start the process of making a bid for the pub. 

Campaign Chair Fred Burnett delivers the request for the District Council to list the Red Lion
This is a significant moment for the Campaign as it demonstrates that it is absolutely serious about retaining the pub for the community & that there is a clear belief amongst Campaigners that the Red Lion can be turned into a viable & successful business. This request for the Red Lion to be listed as an "Asset of Community Value" is the first to be made to East Devon District Council for a pub, & the first to be made to the District Council by a local campaign group! Across the UK there are only about 70 pubs that have been listed by Councils as an "Asset of Community Value".

A copy of the Campaign's press release that was issued today announcing this news is athttp://sites.google.com/site/thepubinthevillage/19.7.13SaveTheRedLionPressRelease.doc
In addition to asking the District Council to list the Red Lion, the Campaign is also now in the process of applying to the Government's Department for Communities and Local Government for a significant grant to allow it to undertake "pre-feasibility" work associated with preparing to make a bid for the pub. This grant will allow the campaign to be supported by professional advisers in evaluating the likely cost of purchasing & upgarding the pub; in starting work on an outline business plan & getting the pub independently valued & possibly surveyed.

Save The Red Lion Campaign expects that by early September it should know if the pub has been listed as  an "Asset of Community Value" & whether it has been awarded the grant which will enable it to take the move to purchase the pub for the community to the next stage. So the next 6/8 weeks will be a bit nailbitting for the Campaign!

The Campaign has not forgotten that the local community will want to fully understand how the next stage will work & to have their say in what the pub should provide, beyond the traditional pub fare, as a community asset. So in early/mid September the Campaign is planning to hold a public meeting in the village to update & engage with the local community.

This is really the start of what will be an exciting, time consuming & determined period for the Campaign as it starts to turn good intentions, that were originally voiced in mid May at the original public meeting that created the Campaign, into actions.

Come with us on this journey! Please support the Campaign as it progresses.
The Pub In The Village : A Community Action 1st in East Devon!