I smell a rat or two

07:00 18 November 2012

SIR - As an East Devon resident and a great lover of Sidmouth, I attended the Save Our Sidmouth march last Saturday.

I was thrilled to see almost 4,000 like-minded people from Sidmouth, East Devon and beyond who also joined the rally in a magnificent show of protest against the plans by East Devon District Council to destroy the wonderful parkland, arboretum and historic Knowle council buildings.

The building, incidentally, looked in a fine state of repair and the roof facing the sea didn’t even have a tile out of place. Re-roofing? - I don’t think so.

Whatever the ins and outs are regarding the destruction of this fine building and surrounding grounds or the need for local housing, the fact remains that this is not the place for any such development.

Whilst other towns in East Devon may think Sidmouth receives preferential treatment and that such places as Seaton for example are starved of much-needed investment, the case remains that Sidmouth is exceptional. It is an architectural arboreal and maritime jewel, possibly worthy of UNESCO recognition. It is an outstanding and unique English seaside town whose protection and recognition is a necessity for the sake of future generations,

It is not, and never should be, the subject for unsightly and unnecessary development by greedy and selfish developers whose sole purpose is profiteering.

And it must also be protected from the egotistical desires of ‘here today, gone tomorrow’ local politicians.

I’m afraid I smell a rat, or two.

Richard Maskrey

Mill Lane, Branscombe

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