Trust in the future: New charity offers hope to Sidmouth

Annie Leigh Browne, Mary's sister and a Sidmouth benefactor

Annie Leigh Browne, Mary's sister and a Sidmouth benefactor - Credit: Archant

A new charity has been established which is dedicated to improving the quality of services in Sidmouth. It is hoped that The Sidmouth Trust will provide an example to other towns and cities, who might be inspired to set up similar organisations.

The idea is that The Sidmouth Trust will be able to raise funds for public services through encouraging donations from the public.

Edward Willis-Fleming, the Chairperson of Trustees for The Sidmouth Trust, explained the charity takes inspiration from former generally wealthy patrons, such as Annie Leigh Browne and Colonel Balfour, who contributed greatly Sidmouth in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The businessman is not expecting everyone to contribute as much as they did, of course. “The public purse is growing smaller and smaller, particularly in the wake of the recent COVID-19 pandemic” said Mr. Willis-Fleming, who is also the Managing Director of The Sidmouth Design Company.

He added: “We hope that many people will be able to contribute small amounts of money, knowing that by doing so, they will be able to ‘sprinkle a little stardust’ on Sidmouth and improve the quality of our swimming pools and other goods and services.

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“We want to preserve the past and shape the future. The Trust acknowledges the role the long tradition of human endeavour and philanthropy has played in making Sidmouth the pleasant place it is today.

"We are optimistic about contributing to the positive evolution of Sidmouth and its surroundings in the future.

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“A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in,” Mr. Willis-Fleming added, quoting from an ancient Greek proverb which points to the advantages to be enjoyed by future generations by our efforts now.

The Sidmouth Trust is also interested in hearing people’s ideas on precisely how the town might be improved and the part the organisation can play in making change happen.

Anyone interested in further information on the work of The Sidmouth Trust should go to their website at visit them on Facebook or Twitter or write to them. They are available by email or at The Sidmouth Trust, c/o WBW Solicitors, 30 High Street, Sidmouth, EX10 8EA.

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