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SIN takes a break

9 Aug

Sidmouth Independent News is pleased to say that since its inception, others in  East Devon  have established similarly well-informed blogs on EDDC-related issues. To avoid duplication, SIN  is now taking a long pause, but  may well be back on line in early 2015.

Some alternative sites that can be referred to are  (with useful LINKS list)

the futuresforum blogspot  at

and of course the especially informative and  popular blogs by Independent Councillors at these links and


Thanks all SIN-ers for the constant  contributions and hundreds of thousands of hits since SIN”s opening  post  on  27 Sept 2012, Good Morning, Sid Valley.   The website’s  archive will continue to be of use,  not least ,we suspect, in the run-up to the May 2015 elections.


“If you want trouble, tell the public they can’t speak”

23 Jul

The above quote from Cllr Peter Halse, (Con) was quoted by Cllr Trevor Cope (Lib Dem) at tonight’s Full Council meeting, but these cross-party warnings  fell on deaf ears. So did many others, including the argument from Cllr Ian Thomas (Con) that “to expect individuals to co-ordinate a response  (to planning applications) is unrealistic” .

Changes to rules for public speaking will now go ahead, after tonight’s Full Council vote.  More comment on the meeting on the EDA website





EDDC about to award themselves yet another black mark? New obstacles to public speaking could be whipped through Full Council this Wednesday.

22 Jul

Listen to the fierce debate on the subject, over your cornflakes this Wednesday morning. This link has details

How many jobs at Skypark?

17 Jul

The Express and Echo has an interesting update on this (see link below to EDA comment ) .

According to the planning application, the new parcel distribution centre will bring only 147 jobs to Skypark.  But this number is not guaranteed, of course, and those jobs will be spread across 24 hours.

Should Skypark fall short of the  6,500 jobs predicted, one important consequence could be that a business park where few people work , would not qualify for a regular bus link. ..unlike the Knowle, Sidmouth.


Warning! Full Council on 23 July is when changes to public speaking may be approved.

12 Jul

SOS website has the details

For your information,below is a record of the ‘Public Speaking’ Votes, at Full Council  9th April 2014

For OSC review i.e AGAINST gagging) – 26 votes
Susie Bond

Roger Boote C

Derek Button

Bob Buxton C

David Chapman C

Trevor Cope

Deborah Custance Baker C

Martin Gammell

Steve Gazzard

Roger Giles

Graham Godbeer C

Pat Graham

Peter Halse C

Mike Howe C

Stuart Hughes C

Douglas Hull

Ben Ingham

John Jeffery

Sheila Kerridge C

Jim Knight C

Philip Skinner C

Peter Sullivan C

Graham Troman C

Eileen Wragg

Steve Wragg

Claire Wright


Against the OSC review (i.e. FOR Gagging)  –22 votes

David Atkins C

Ray Bloxham C

Peter Bowden C

Geoff Chamberlain LD

Iain Chubb C

David Cox C

Alan Dent C

Paul Diviani C

Christine Drew C

Jill Elson C

Steve Hall C

Stephanie Jones C

Andrew Moulding C

Frances Newth C

John O’Leary C

Helen Parr C

Ken Potter C

Pauline Stott C

Phil Twiss C

Mark Williamson C

Tim Wood C

Tom Wright C

“I am a bit of a peasant when it comes to culture”, admits Cllr Twiss

5 Jun

In an unwitting piece of irony, the Tory Party Whip made this declaration at last night’s Cabinet meeting, when the long and costly snag-list for the new community centre at Honiton was  being discussed. As Cllr Mike Allen pointed out, EDDC has made an investment of £1,000,000 in the new Beehive Centre, and things have not gone smoothly with the business plan. There have been well-reported ructions at Honiton Town Council meetings, about the intended use and future management of the Centre, which may have to apply for charitable status to source additional grants now needed to complete the project.

Any lessons to be learned here, regarding another EDDC lavish project  for a newbuild  Council office at the Skypark wasteland?

New broom sweeps clean?

3 Jun

East Devon County and District Independent Councillor, Claire Wright has today launched her campaign to challenge Hugo Swire , MP, at next year’s election.

SIN readers may well recall this: and this (from 2012):

Report on today’s gathering in the Dissenters’ Room at Sidmouth’s Unitarian Church Hall, is on the EDA website

No cobwebs on Claire!

30 May

2014-02-23 17.14.00

Congratulations to Independent County and District Cllr Claire Wright, who has announced that she will be standing for East Devon, against the Party machine,  at the Parliamentary elections just one year ahead, in May 2015. Her campaign begins next week. See SIN’s earlier post,

ASDA planning south expansion particularly in Devon and Cornwall

30 May

“Asda is planning to build 40 major superstores and well as a further 100 new supermarkets.The expansion plan will also include 150 forecourt shops. Two-thirds will be in the south east, London, Cornwall and Devon.”

Exeter, Honiton, maybe Exmouth, could fight it out with Morrisons in Sidmouth?  Will Asda replace Tesco as our council’s favourite supermarket chain!


Yet another “Don’t do as we do, do as we say, sorry – demand

19 May

“As I said at the Standards Hearing last July, there is one rule for one, and one rule for another. At the last Full Council meeting at The Knowle, the Leader told one Member that what he had said was rubbish. Another senior Member referred to the Leader as ‘spineless and arrogant’ last year, which made newspaper headlines. Not thought worthy of complaint by a Tory Whip, or just plain double standards?”

So said Lib Dem councillor Eileen Wragg after her second appearance before an EDDC Standards Committee. Since then, there has been a serious attempt to discredit Independent Councillor Roger Giles, and investigations brought against dissidents in Newton Poppleford (parish councillor Graham Salter) and in Axminster (Independent town councillor, Paul Hayward).

Isn’t it strange that only Tory councillors have thin skins (they are the ones who complain) and only non-Tory councillors are wrong (they are the inky ones being complained about).

Seems to me best to vote for robust minority councillors rather than over-sensitive ones.

Still, it’s more income for the local press as EDDC pays for its decisions to be publicised (with our money, of course).