Mill Street proposal: ‘EDDC’s lack of transparency’

Parking

Parking - Credit: Archant

District councillor Matt Booth, a Sidmouth town ward member, said the first he saw of the ‘bombshell’ Mill Street proposals was in the Herald – and claimed the authority showed a ‘lack of transparency’.

Mr Booth claimed: “It has a problem of transparency and accountability - and it can’t go on ignoring that.

“It does a disservice to the councillors and officers who do such fantastic work. It’s also massively disrespectful to us as ward members – we weren’t consulted.”

Cllr Booth said he and Councillor Cathy Gardner had met EDDC chief executive Mark Williams two months ago to talk about how the section 106 funding would be spent. Cllr Booth said they discussed potential affordable housing on the Manstone Depot site or in Woolbrook Road – but claimed Mill Street car park was never mentioned.

An EDDC spokeswoman said: “We would like to emphasise that this is very early days in the decision-making process and that absolutely nothing has yet been agreed.

“There will be a fully transparent and participative debate about how people would like to see this important site used to its best advantage in the town.”