Some local (and otherwise) news


News courtesy of Kevin Foster

(MP for Torbay)

Torbay School & Parkfield Decision

Over recent months a passionate debate has been held over proposals to move Torbay School to the Parkfield site in order to allow a new primary school to be built there.

There is a need for more primary school places in Paignton, but it is safe to say there was a very reluctant yes from Councillors yesterday to proceeding with the plan for a new Primary School on the current Torbay School site.

Cllr Dave Thomas (Leader of the Conservative Group) commented via Facebook that the decision to move Torbay School to Parkfield was actually taken in February, where the final agreement was delegated to council officers. The decision yesterday was about whether the site Torbay School is leaving was suitable for building a new school.
You can read a full report of the debate on the Herald Express website by clicking here .

We await, with interest, the details of arrangements for community access to Parkfield for the many clubs that meet there and activities that take place.

Torbay Airshow 2017 Set For Take Off

There has been much positive feedback about the first Torbay Airshow but it was good to see Paignton so busy over the three days it was held.

The downside is that the event lost £250,000 and yesterday Councillors met to discuss whether to underwrite holding a similar event next year. After a debate the decision was yes and Torbay Airshow 2017 was cleared for takeoff.

There will be aspects of the event that the organising team at the Council will be able to review to trim costs in some areas, including more realistic VIP packages and not having quite such an extensive amount of traffic restrictions. Yet it is worth bearing in mind the event is estimated to have brought over £4m of benefit to our local economy, boosting local businesses when they might otherwise have been quiet.

So whilst there will be some who will just talk about the cost of the Airshow, we should also consider the value of what is being done in terms of bringing new business into the bay.

Fair Funding For Our Schools

Last year Kevin Foster organised a petition calling on the government to revise the funding formula for schools that currently sees pupils in the bay miss out on thousands of pounds that other areas receive.

The historical anomalies in the school funding system mean that Torbay Schools receive one of the lowest amounts per pupil in the country. The Government has pledged to deal with this and introduce a fairer system, although yesterday confirmed this will not now happen until next year.

Kevin was interviewed about this by the Western Morning News and you can read more about it by clicking here.

Sports Club Leases

Over recent months Sports Clubs have been concerned about proposals from the council to charge market rents for their premises.

Many clubs pay a peppercorn or very reduced rental rate in recognition that they aim to provide a facility for the community and encourage exercise. Some exist on a very low income so seeing their rent rise significantly could put their future in jeopardy.

This matter was discussed by Councillors at Thursday’s council meeting. The outcome was that a revised version of the council’s asset management plan will need to be brought forward that responds to concerns raised about this issue.

Chance to Discuss Pavilion Development Plans

If you want to hear more about the plans for a major development around the Pavilion in Torquay, the Wellswood and Torwood Community Partnership Meeting on Thursday (28th July) will be a great chance to do so.

Copied below is the information sent to me by Sue Kenway, the Secretary of the Community Partnership:

As part of our quarterly review of Local Development, Richard Maddock from Kay Elliott, architects for the proposed Marina Development, will be on hand to show the new proposals and Ruth Robinson from Planning at Torbay Council will be available to answer any questions about the Planning Process. Don’t forget we are at the Lincombe Hall Hotel (Meadfoot Road)  at 7pm on Thursday 28th July.

Police & Crime Commissioner’s Consultation

Our Police and Crime Commissioner (Plus Torbay Resident) Alison Hernandez is carrying out a major public consultation on her policing plan and priorities.

Many residents have views on how best our Police could tackle issues in the bay and what should be their priorities for action. This is a great chance to share them as part of drawing up a plan for the next four years.

You can find details of the proposed plan, plus how to have your say on it, by clicking here.

View Over the Bay

The weather this week has been perfect for drone flying and Drone Pilot Mark Champion has been out capturing some stunning views of our bay.

You can see them on the Herald Express website by clicking here.

Rhino Rail

The Great Big Rhino Trail will soon be set up across the bay providing lots of summer fun whilst helping preserve this critically endangered species.

Earlier today though it was more Rhino Rail than trail as one of the decorated statues made its way along the steam railway to Kingswear where it will be residing over summer. The pictures on the Herald Express website are great to see and you can find them by clicking here.

The best view though was taken by an ITV journalist who uploaded a video to Twitter a short video of the colourful journey. Hopefully you can see it by clicking here


A Friendly Visitor at Torre Abbey Sands

Ending on a lighter note the “Jaws” films series not only gave many people a fright, but also a false impression that seeing a shark fin means get out of the water quick.

Hence it was great to see a friendly visitor to Torre Abbey Sands show a very different image of the shark. A Smooth Hound Shark ventured into shallow waters around the beach to the delight of bathers, one of whom captured the visitor on video. This type of shark is native to our waters and is only a threat if you happen to be a small fish or crustacean. You can see the video by clicking here.

What is thought provoking is that whilst across the world there are 480 species of shark only 3 are known to have attacked humans without provocation. Only 4-5 people are killed globally by sharks each year, yet on average every hour 11,000 sharks are killed by humans. A very different impression to what many people have thanks to Hollywood films.


Paignton Festival

23rd – 31st July 2016, 10:00 – 22:00, Paignton Green, Paignton, TQ4 6BN
Cost: Free.
Booking: No booking necessary.
For more information, click here

Whitley Court’s Summer Fete

23rd July 2016, 10:30 – 14:00, Whitley Court, Hayes Road, Paignton, TQ4 5XW
Cost: Free.
Booking: No booking necessary.
For more information, click here

Riviera Classic Car Show
24th July 2016 – 10:30 – Paignton Sea Front, Esplanade Road, Paignton, TQ4 6BQ
Cost: £2.50
Booking: No booking necessary
For more information, click here

Stick Insects: Free drop-in activities

25th July 2016 – 10:00 – Torre Abbey, The King’s Dr, Torquay TQ2 5JE
Cost: Free
Booking: No booking necessary
For more information, click here


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