How would you improve Sidmouth?
Vision Group / Futures Forum Member
What is your idea?
My proposal is to invest the money on enhancing the visitor’s experience of the town centre to make it more enjoyable by improving pedestrian safety and access.
At present Fore Street is a very low grade and stressful shopping experience. Dominated by vehicles and their fumes it is unsafe and forces customers to hurry through it.
To improve this situation I would start by widening the pavements and introducing crossing points along Fore Street and up at the hazardous Unitary Church junction.
Why do you think it would improve Sidmouth?
Sidmouth is richly endowed with a nationally important historic cluster of Georgian and Victorian streets but this heritage is severely undermined by the impact of unnecessary volumes of traffic.
A more pleasant ambience has largely been achieved in Old Fore Street and Market Square so we now need a programme to continue this success across the centre.
By widening the footpaths and introducing raised crossing while providing other traffic calming measures we will make the main street of the town more pedestrian friendly and fit for purpose.
Who will benefit?
Creating a better shared public domain will support the local economy and help to make the resort into a prosperous tourist destination.
At present the high street is blighted by poor and unsafe environmental conditions which mean shoppers have no wish to linger.
Such a rush by the customers results in the loss of many thousands of pounds to the local economy.
A high street however is not simply about shopping but requires a much more holistic mixture of services which encourage users to stay longer.
The above improvements will contribute to Sidmouth becoming a highly regarded and treasured resort where visitors and residents will benefit from a leisurely stroll around the historic streets in a calm and relaxed atmosphere.