John to ‘stick up for Sidmouth’

John Rayson who is standing for Sidmouth town council. Ref shs 5058-14-15TI. Picture: Terry Ife

John Rayson who is standing for Sidmouth town council. Ref shs 5058-14-15TI. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

A businessman vying for a seat on the town council says he will work to protect Sidmouth’s assets, fight for better transport links and improve community spirit.

Independent hopeful John Rayson, 67, this week announced his candidacy for the west ward in May’s elections.

The owner of Sidmouth Stationery says he would campaign for improved recycling facilities, the revitalisation of the River Sid and a ‘bigger slice’ of district funding for the town.

Mr Rayson’s long-term vision includes replacing the existing car park at the Ham with a multi-storey facility to boost business, and the construction of a 1,000-seat theatre/concert hall on the Manor Road car park as a centre for entertainment and culture.

He said: “I have lived in Sidmouth all my life and am standing for a place on the town council, as I now feel I would like to put something back into the town.

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“I believe in the past the town council has been too closely linked to the policies of the district and the county council.

“Now is the time to have a truly independent town council, which will stick up and negotiate for everything that is best for the town and will truly represent our townspeople.”

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Mr Rayson, who lives in Peaslands Road, worked in the finance department of East Devon District Council for 30 years before opening his business in 2004.

His other ideas include more public events to boost community spirit.

He added: “We need to organise street parties, town picnics, Christmas parties, a town carol service, have the Red Arrows as an annual event and have better community education facilities.”

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