New town council chair sets out his aims

Councillors Hilary Nelson and Chris Lockyear

Councillors Hilary Nelson and Chris Lockyear, the vice chair and chair of Sidmouth Town Council - Credit: Sidmouth Town Council

Supporting local businesses, protecting the environment and delivering local services effectively are among the key aims of Sidmouth Town Council’s new chairman. 

Cllr Chris Lockyear has taken over from Cllr Ian Barlow after being elected at the council’s meeting on Monday, May 16. Cllr Hilary Nelson was appointed vice chair. 

Following the meeting, Cllr Lockyear said he was ‘honoured’ to have been elected. 

He said: “We have a dedicated group of councillors who work incredibly hard, on a voluntary basis, for the people of Sidmouth. I would like us to continue to protect the beautiful environment in the Sid Valley that makes this a fantastic place to live and visit. We must also ensure our activities are sustainable in the wider context.” 

He said the town council had done a ‘superb’ job over the last few years in promoting Sidmouth as a unique tourist destination, and would continue working with the Chamber of Commerce and other organisations to help the town’s economy to thrive. One element of this would be ensuring the ongoing success of Sidmouth’s many festivals ‘that provide entertainment, education and enjoyment to residents and visitors alike’. 

He said: “Sidmouth Town Council will continue to work with East Devon District Council, Devon County Council and our local Member of Parliament so we have the infrastructure that supports both the community and the businesses we need to thrive. This cooperation in areas such as roads, beach, environment, and planning is vital to ensure all council services, at whatever level, can be delivered efficiently and effectively.” 

He also praised the contribution made by the Sid Valley’s ‘unique’ range of clubs, societies and other organisations: “They offer a huge variety of services to the community and the council will continue to support them as best we can. However, I also know that there are still isolated individuals and groups, and we will seek to reach out to them so they feel included within our community. Your councillors represent you, the people of the Sid Valley, and so it is important that your voices are heard. I will always be ready to listen to residents so we can continue to improve the services we offer.”