Towns join forces to put East Devon on green tourism map

Sidmouth beach during summer holiday season

Following the success of the Visit Sidmouth brand, the initiative will help the other East Devon towns promote themselves as green tourism destinations - Credit: Cliff Smith Photography

Sidmouth is joining forces with four other East Devon towns to make the district a key destination for green tourism. 

The town council will work with Seaton, Honiton, Ottery St Mary and Budleigh Salterton to promote them as linked destinations, while also emphasising the attractions of each individual town. 

Sidmouth is acting as the lead partner in the initiative, following its three years of investing in and developing the Visit Sidmouth brand. 

The project has been made possible by a grant from East Devon District Council’s Innovation and Resilience Fund. 

Cllr Louise Cole, Chair of Tourism and Economy at Sidmouth Town Council, said: “We know businesses and local groups in the Sid Valley are already taking climate action and making changes to reduce their carbon footprint. This project will help them do even more, and to share what they do with others.  

“We are excited about working collaboratively to achieve far more than each town could individually to create a destination presence that has so much to offer. The need to carefully develop a sustainable tourism offer to attract visitors who also want to make responsible choices has never been so important. This is a huge boost that will help us to balance promoting the best of our area, develop innovative tourist businesses and protect what makes Sidmouth and East Devon special.” 

Cllr Stewart Lucas, Deputy Mayor at Ottery St Mary Town Council, said: “Ottery St Mary Town Council is very excited to be part of this collaboration and looks forward to working together to revitalise and further develop tourism opportunities within our parish.

"In these challenging times it is more important than ever for us to work together, share resources and be creative in finding new ways of stimulating local economies. This grant will allow us to develop strategies which bring together the need for improved environmental and climate awareness and the promotion of tourism within the locality of the partner towns." 

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It is hoped that the project will help tourism businesses in all five towns recover from the effects of the pandemic, and boost year-round employment. 

Sidmouth Town Council will be appointing a consultant to manage its part in the initiative; details and an application form can be found in the News section of the council’s website.