Sidmouth councillors rail over seafront railings state

SEAFRONT railings in Sidmouth, in desperate need of re-painting, will remain as they are for another year.

Town councillors, who expressed concern to East Devon District Council that the railings were not to be spruced up, are unhappy with its chief executive, Mark Williams’s response.

He said: “The quote we received was apparently for �16,000 and in the difficult budget setting process that my council went through, members considered that they were unable to justify this sum of money for the current financial year.”

However, he added: “I am aware that the appearance of the railings is important and am of the firm view that we will need to make provision for painting in 2011.”

“I sometimes wonder what is happening at EDDC,” said town council chairman Councillor Peter Sullivan at its June meeting. I thought they were quoted �30,000, now they come back with �16,000. On this we should be holding them to it and send a reminder later this year.”

Most thought the railings had not been painted since 1995, although Councillor Stuart Hughes thought is more likely to be six years ago.

“I’ve had a look around the railings and the weather is starting to rust them. They need to look at them as rust could be dangerous,” said Councillor Jack Brokenshire.

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Councillor Tony Reed said: “This council has got to send a strong letter to EDDC saying this is our shop window, these are an asset of ours and you should bloody well maintain them!”