'What other investment can make £71,000 a year?'

Model houses on a pile of coins and bank notes. Picture: PA Wire/PA Images

House prices are on the rise - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

The increase in national property prices in 2021 has been the subject of many articles over the past week both on The Internet and in the written press. 

Indeed, a BBC Breakfast film crew was in Taunton town centre last week to report on the 21% increase in property prices seen in the county town of Somerset. 

Taunton is of course very handily located for Bristol and it is only 1 hour 40 minutes on the train to London. 

With areas of outstanding natural beauty surrounding it and the seaside not too far away, you can see why it was a place that was in high demand during the pandemic. 

I am not sure what percentage price increases were seen in the Sidmouth area last year but I am guessing that they were very high, especially for detached properties. I have recently had a look at the recent Land Registry figures and, although there are no sales on there from the last quarter of 2021, there are still some interesting earlier sales featured.

One that caught my eye was a detached house in King Alfred Way, Newton Poppleford that had gone up £142,000 in less than two years. There aren’t many places where your investments can earn you £71,000 per year!

Looking ahead to 2022, the sporting highlight is likely to be the football World Cup that is due to be played during November and December in Qatar. The heat is bound to be a major factor during the tournament. 

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On the cricketing front, England have home tests this summer against New Zealand, South Africa and the decider against India, carried over from last summer. 

In local rugby, Exeter Chiefs will be hoping for a big second half to the season as they chase more silverware. A home win last Saturday against Bristol got them off to a good start. The match was played in front of a record crowd with the new East Stand being used for the first time. The capacity will soon rise above 15,000. 

In football, Exeter City need to get their season back on the rails as soon as possible after a dire time in recent weeks. An away defeat at Sutton last Saturday was disappointing. 

Back to rugby. Sidmouth will be hoping to get some early New Year wins under their belt starting this Saturday at home against Newent. Kick off is at 2.30pm.

On the racing front I went to Exeter for their New Years Day meeting last Saturday. I must say on entering the course I wasn’t expecting to see sniffer dogs searching for drugs and a drugs amnesty box placed at the entrance. 

After gaining entry I saw a much younger crowd than usual and the drinks were certainly flowing! I think the racecourse were very aware of their expected audience. Well done to them for having a deterrent in place.

This Monday, the major roadworks start in Sidmouth along the main artery road via Temple Street, Vicarage Road, Radway, High Street, Fore Street and through to the seafront. Hopefully disruption will be kept to a minimum. 

As residents, what a perfect time to exercise rather than drive and ease the congestion while helping with our New Year resolutions! As a resident living off this main artery road it will be necessary to plan a direction of travel when leaving the town to avoid congestion. 

Equally, those dropping off children to school, those popping into shops and those delivering items will have to plan ahead and leave plenty of time. Good luck with your travels over the next few weeks as you get around.

Finally, the funeral of Cornish comedian Jethro took place last Monday. The service was live streamed from Truro Cathedral. It was a fitting tribute to a man who has given many of us a good laugh since he burst onto local television many years ago.

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