Some local (and otherwise) news


News courtesy of Kevin Foster

Dawlish line news

This time next week, the Dawlish Coastal Railway will re-open and you can already book tickets in advance for journeys using it.

Whilst a great job has been done repairing the Dawlish Line, the fact remains that there will still be only one rail route west of Exeter.

If on Twitter, do not forget to remind your friends that the bay is #OpenforBusiness and tweet a few pictures of what visitors can look forward to once they get here.

Community views wanted on Masterplans

Torbay Council has commissioned consultants to prepare Masterplans showing how key areas of change in Torquay and Paignton could develop and grow over the next 20 years and beyond.

Masterplans are being prepared for Torquay Gateways (Edginswell, Scots Bridge and Newton Road corridor), Torquay town centre, Paignton town centre and Collaton St Mary. The masterplans will provide detail on mix of uses, layout and design of areas, plus the need for infrastructure, community facilities, open space and other matters.

A series of community drop-in days and workshops are being held to get people’s views about their area and the proposals being made, the one most relevant to us is:

Torquay Town Centre and Gateway:

Tuesday 1st April 2014
Location 1: St John the Baptist Church, Cadewell Lane, Shiphay 3pm-7pm.
Location 2: Dot’s Pantry, Union Street, Torquay 5pm-8pm.

A further public exhibition will take place towards the end of April, details to be announced.

There will also be a website consultation on the draft Masterplans between 28 April- 9th May.  Watch this space for details.

Business rate relief for retailers

In December the Chancellor announced that he would be introducing a Business Rate Retail Relief for occupied premises, worth up to £1,000, from Tuesday 1 April 2014 for the next two financial years.

Business Rate Retail Relief will apply to property that has a rateable value of up to £50,000, which is occupied for retail purposes, or where the majority of the property is used for the sale of food and drink to members of the public.

Businesses that can benefit include Pubs, Post Offices, Hairdressers, Petrol Stations, Travel Agents and Funeral Directors. The Relief needs to be applied for, but this is easily done by submitting a form to Torbay Council.

There are some exemptions but if you run a retail business in the Bay and have not already applied then check online for more details, and to download the relevant form, by clicking here

£330,000 Pothole Boost

Torbay Council has received additional funding from the Government to help repair damage to the local road network caused by the recent storms.

The funding being made available is in addition to the funding already allocated to the council for highway maintenance. The amount allocated to Torbay is £336,225, and was due to be paid on 28 March. The additional funding is to be used to deal with the immediate backlog of pothole repairs and to identify, as well as resurface a number of estate roads, to make them more resilient to future weather damage.

Full details of how the additional funding will be spent, listing the exact locations of repairs, will be published on the Torbay Council website in the next few weeks when the council has drawn up the relevant programme of works.

In the meantime you can report roads in need of attention by either filling the online form by clicking here.

In addition to the money above, the Chancellor announced in the recent budget that a further £200 million is to be made available for 2014/15 to help tackle potholes and surface deterioration on the local road network.

Clennon Valley Circuit making progress

Work on the 1.5km closed road circuit scheme at Clennon Valley (Torbay VeloPark) is progressing and appears to be both on-target and on-budget.

Torbay Development Agency is working with Torbay Council and British Cycling to deliver the £800,000 project, which is 50% funded by British Cycling.  The circuit is set to be completed by the end of May ready for a community participation event on Sunday 1 June.

The site includes changing rooms, bike hire, bike storage and maintenance and a refreshment vendor. Schools, clubs and individuals will be able to book the circuit through Torbay Council’s booking office at the site or on the day of use.

Mayor of Torbay, Gordon Oliver, gave the following quote on the work:

“We are committed to providing the best facilities we can, putting Torbay on the map for regional sports development and creating quality tourism facilities.

I am very pleased to see this exciting project well underway and positioning Torbay as a centre of excellence for all cycling sports including road racing.  Our partnership with British Cycling means that we are able to develop such a facility which is on target and on budget, despite recent weather conditions.”

Consultation reminder

Just a reminder of two consultations that are running currently that were mentioned in last week’s update.

The first is on the future of subsidised bus services, the second on the Library service. You can find more details on both by clicking the relevant links below:

Bus Services

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