Hello all,

And welcome to this month's catch-up on news and views.

Keeping our Valley rich in nature

Throughout the extraordinarily long summer, we have learnt to value our wildlife even more – and there have been several initiatives at work promoting this richness:

Congratulations to Friends of the Byes on reaching their tenth anniversary.

A new project is well underway to bring back a little life to a corner of the seafront - The Ham Planting and Art Community Project

And the Sid Valley Biodiversity Group has just launched its Facebook site – which includes several pieces published by the Herald – and here's Cllr Chris Lockyear on Radio Exe talking about the project.

And here's a petition to get us to install 'swift bricks' to give more housing to these joyous screaming birds of summer.

Keeping an eye on planning issues

Talking of housing... if you thought the Sid Valley Neighbourhood Plan and the East Devon Local Plan had sorted things out for the next few years, the latest developments suggest otherwise...

At the centre is something even bigger – the Greater Exeter Strategic Plan - and this coming Thursday 20th August, East Devon is set to reject it – just as Mid Devon is.

This will have profound implications, including “East Devon being recommended to immediately start the revision of its Local Plan.”

Meanwhile, there is to be a 'housing revolution' – although there are fears what this might mean for local planning decision-making.

And, anyway, who's to blame for the lack of housing?

Keeping resilient

More positively, news is that the Sidmouth Repair Café will be back late September – with online repair cafés happening, which should help reduce the mounting pile of e-waste.

The Town Council's environment committee's new working group has met up with the very active Transition Exmouth to put together a joint project: more of that later...

The Sidmouth Plastic Warriors continue to be very active – and are hoping to relaunch plastic free Sidmouth.

And a press release has just gone out promoting the idea of an e-trike delivery-and-passenger service for the Valley.

Keeping our Valley special

Finally, as we look to the future, we have to ask “What is Sidmouth for?”, as the patterns of work, the shape of the high street and the look of our countryside will all be changing pretty quickly.

Check out the VGS news pages for any more items.

And if you'd like to learn more about any of these initiatives or would like to get involved, just get in touch.

Keep safe and keep well.

All the best, The VGS team.


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