Some local news


News courtesy of Kevin Foster

Train Pain Set to Ease

There is some really good news this week on the Dawlish Rail route with the announcement that it will reopen on Friday 4th April 2014.  From checking the websites advance train fares are now available that indicate services running as normal from the date concerned.

In the meantime the disruption continues and you can find all the latest information on the disruption to services on the Railway Companies Websites. Click on their name below to be taken to the relevant pages:

First Great Western

The normal half hourly services on the Riviera Line between Paignton and Newton Abbot were restored last week.

If making a journey by train it is well worth checking the live departure boards at our local stations before leaving. You can find them by clicking here.

Riviera Wheel Back in The Bay

The English Riviera Wheel is set to open early for the Easter holidays with residents being able to enjoy the breath taking views from the wheel from Friday 4th April.

The wheel, at a height of nearly 60 metres, is taller than Nelson’s Column and will once again be located in Princess Gardens, Torquay.

The installation of the wheel will take about one week by ten fully trained and qualified personnel using an inbuilt hydraulic system, and will be transported to Torbay on ten specially adapted trailers. You can view an interview with the Mayor regarding the English Riviera Wheel here.

Packages Announced to Help Storm Hit Businesses

Tourism businesses affected by the floods from bed and breakfasts and hotels to local attractions will get help from a new £2 million support fund after an announcement by Culture Secretary Maria Miller.

The £2million government investment will put experts on the ground to give practical advice and support to tourism businesses. This fund will be managed locally by Visit Devon. The Visit Devon program of support is expected to include seminars in Torquay, Plymouth, Barnstaple and Exeter focusing on business planning and marketing supported by a program of ‘one to one’ business support sessions tailored to specific needs.

If any business would like to express an interest in arranging a one to one free of charge Business Advice sessions or attending any of the Weather Recovery Tourism Events/Seminars you can email

More details about the sessions will be available on Twitter by following @visitdevon as well as on the

Torbay to Fly Flag for the Commonwealth

There will be an historic flag raising event on Monday 10 March to mark Commonwealth Day and celebrate the historic links we have with the countries that are part of it.

The flag at Torquay Town Hall will be one of five hundred Commonwealth flags going up simultaneously at across the United Kingdom.

Local authorities, community groups and charities are all taking part in the event. As well as flying the flag at major public buildings, charity teams will mark the day by taking Commonwealth flags to the top of the UK’s four highest peaks to raise funds.

In Torbay the Mayor, Gordon Oliver will be joined by the Chairman, Councillor Julien Parrott outside Torquay Town Hall from 10am , council officers and members have also been invited to attend. The Mayor will read a message from the Queen and a specially written Commonwealth Affirmation will be read out by the Chairman before the flag is raised.

In the Great War that stated 100 years ago and in World War 2 many Commonwealth Countries made huge sacrifices to help keep us free. It is therefore great to celebrate the ongoing link of friendship we share with many of them.

More information about the Fly a Flag for the Commonwealth celebration can be found at

Sign Up Now For Fifth Mayor’s Forum

Torbay Mayor, Gordon Oliver, will host the Fifth Mayor’s forum with the theme of regeneration and job creation in the Bay on Tuesday 8 April 5.30- 9pm at the Rosetor Room, Riviera International Conference Centre in Torquay.

The forum is an opportunity for all those who are passionate about improving life in the Bay to hear about new projects and future plans from the council and its partners.

If you would like to attend the Mayor’s Forum please ring Arron Rodger on 01803 208369 or email

Weather Stalls Meadfoot Project

Torbay Council has written to its customers this week to advise that due to the extreme weather its Meadfoot beach hut project will unfortunately be delayed.

The existing huts, which dated from the 1960’s, have been demolished already to make way for the new £1.6m project that will replace them with a modern complex. The recent weather has caused changes to the beach profile affecting access planned. Additionally there have been setbacks to the rock protection scheme as a result of the very heavy rain; as well as further sea damage to steps, railings and the promenade

Work will be suspended during the summer to enable the beach to be used normally during the summer season. In the meantime the promenade will be strengthened, stabilised and made ready to take the extra weight of the new chalets over the winter. The site will then be cleared and made safe allowing the promenade to be used for the summer season.

The redevelopment works will recommence in October at the end of the summer season.

Children Campaign For Road Safety

Who’s child do you want to hurt? That’s the question pupils in St Marychurch C of E Primary and Nursery School are asking motorists who park outside their school.

The campaign is being led by the St Marychurch School Council, which is made up of school pupils. They’re urging parents and carers to park safely and legally during the school run to prevent a child from being hurt.

On Tuesday 4 March the children were accompanied outside their school by local St Marychurch Councillor Ray Hill; Police Community Safety Officers; a school governor and the Deputy Headteacher, Karen Thomson to speak to parents and motorists.

They handed out leaflets and put up posters, which they had designed themselves, to remind motorists not to park on double yellow lines outside the school and that parking illegally could cost a child’s life.

It is great to see the children themselves taking action to tackle a problem that is common one on roads outside schools across the bay. I hope hearing about St Marychurch’s success will encourage others to do the same.

Storm Brings Some Cheer

Ending on a lighter note after all the news of storm damage hitting the south west over recent months there was one bit that might bring a smile to the face of a few motorists.

Whilst the Pier and Geoplay Park on Paignton Seafront survived the Valentines’ Day storm the parking meters owned by the Council next to the beach did not. A few on Torquay Seafront also feel victim to the waves. You can read the full story on the Herald Express website by clicking here.

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