Seafront: You say keep traders away

Most Sidmothians think traders should not be allowed to set up their stalls on Sidmouth's seafront.

Most Sidmothians think traders should not be allowed to set up their stalls on Sidmouth's seafront.That is the message in a survey carried out by the Herald and East Devon District Council.A total of 161 people responded to the survey, which asked if trading should be allowed along the promenade or not. Those who said it should be allowed were asked to say whether that should be limited to during FolkWeek only, in FolkWeek and community events or at weekends only.Of the 161 respondents, 111 were against any trading, and 50 were in favour.The issue will now be debated by EDDC's executive when it meets on April 30.A report accompanying the figures said that, of the 50 who said trading should be allowed, most wanted it only during FolkWeek, and there was little support for year-round tradingCouncil officers have suggested the executive could designate the area as a consent street to allow trading, but that it be limited to allow trading in FolkWeek only.They do, however, remind the executive to take note of the survey where most people wanted trading to remain prohibited.The report also highlights loopholes which benefit traders:l It is not possible to ban all trading on the seafront. Even if normal trading was prohibited, genuine peddlars and those providing 'services' such as hair brading can continue.l 'Traders' have in the past claimed they are peddlars, the definition of which requires that they must be able to move their stall regularly, although, as the report states, this is often not the case.l Peddlars' certificates and their enforcement is the responsibility of the police, who have no control over how many are issued. A licence can be issued anywhere in the UK, for use anywhere.The report said if the area was designated a consent street, certain areas could be sectioned off to allow performers to work unhindered. It is currently a prohibited street, with no trading allowed.

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