“Degree of consultation” over plan for Sidmouth’s future

RESIDENTS will get “a degree” of further consultation over a controversial blueprint for the future of Sidmouth and East Devon.

East Devon District Council (EDDC) bosses say they are “moving on to the next stage” with their vision for the region until 2026.

The authority’s Local Plan Panel this week handed over responsibility for taking the policy document forward to its parent body - EDDC’s development management committee.

Proposals for Sidmouth feature 150 new homes and the creation of five hectares of employment land.

Council bosses say that, while proposals are coming together after years of preparations, there’s still time for “a degree” of public consultation in the coming months before the policy document is finalised by the authority and passed to the Government for ratification.

EDDC leader, Councillor Paul Diviani, said: “The development management committee will now drive the Local Plan agenda and will report to full council.

There is a schedule which details all relevant further consultation with the people of East Devon, and we have to adhere to that schedule to meet the Government’s deadlines. Everyone is encouraged to examine that schedule to see where representation can be made.”

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A draft plan will go to the development management committee on May 8.

An EDDC spokesperson said there will be a “short informal consultation on policy boundaries for towns” from mid May to mid June.

A final agreed plan will go to full council on July 25.

A legally required consultation on the proposed submission document, where the plan is available for anyone to comment, will take place from August to September.

Late 2012 – The plan and all comments received will then be sent to the national Planning Inspectorate in late 2012.

The examination of the plan will be in 2013 and adoption -assuming it is found to be sound - will be later that year.