New HQ would be good for the young

Whilst reading the Herald today I came across the article ‘Scout HQ wrangle’ by Mr Richard Huntington and feel so disappointed in what he is asking people to do that I would like to reply to his comments:

The site that Mr Huntington talks about is, I believe, as he correctly stated held in trust by the local council and leased to the 1st Sid Vale Scout Group.

I do not live in Sidmouth but I am a Scout leader in Ottery St Mary so really I am a bystander looking in. I am very surprised that he feels that this place should be kept as it is. What better use than a Scout HQ for the local area, investing in the youth and the adults of tomorrow.

I could understand his objections if a large planning developer was eyeing the site up but basically this is to give a great organisation such as Scouting a fit for purpose location for the development and enjoyment of young people.

He states that this site was donated to the people of Salcome Regis Parish circa 1850.


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This was indeed a very generous donation and obviously the person donating must have known and respected the good people of Salcome Regis to do so. However in this more transient society, how many families are still in the area that lived there at the time?

Is it correct that you could move into an area and lay claim to what happens to a site donated to people that may have, on the whole moved on?

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All of the Scout groups in the East Devon area are very envious of the facility that the Sid Vale group has. However we are only envious in the summer months when the beautiful outside areas can be used as the group’s HQ location within Sidmouth is woefully inadequate and restricts their numbers. Pretty much every other group has a better meeting place that is fit for scouting in the 21st century than the Sid Vale group. I believe that they are simply trying to improve what they have to offer and if a Scout HQ was to be built on the site its impact would be very minimal to the environment but massive to the youth of the Sidmouth area.

I would suggest people have a look at the meagre plans and consider what such a tiny building project would mean to generations to come.

Chris Evans

by email

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