Honiton's desperate need for sport pitches could be coming to an end after East Devon District Council announced plans for a consultation with the local community to find out what they want
The consultation, which also involves the relevant local organisations, will hear the public's views about draft proposals for additional sport pitches to meet the growing demand of Honiton.
The need to identify sites for additional sports pitches is an important part of the EDDC's Playing Pitch Strategy (PPS), which it adopted in June 2015.
Consequently, East Devon's planning policy team has produced draft Sports Pitch Strategies for both these towns, which recommend a combination of new sites on which to deliver sports pitches and improvements to existing sites. The draft strategies were produced following an objective assessment of a number of potential sites around Honiton based on sustainability and suitability criteria.
Through the consultation, which began in May and concludes on Friday July 8th, the council is actively seeking the views of the general public, as well as key stakeholders such as: town councils, neighbouring parish councils, neighbours to the proposed sites, sports clubs, the National Governing Bodies (NGBs) for the relevant sports, Sport England, landowners and other statutory consultees.
Feedback from the consultation will help to ensure that the final recommendations for the Sports Pitch Strategies are well evidenced and generally supported by the community. The final document will be considered by council members later this summer.
A spokesperson for EDDC said: "It is important to note that the draft strategies have not yet been considered by members, who have specifically requested that the views of clubs and local communities are understood before they make a decision on where new sports pitches should be delivered. The council is not under any obligation to fund or deliver any of the proposed projects, however it will work closely with key partners to ensure they are realised. It is important to note that the recommendations in the strategies are not a substitute for planning permission and do not mean that the proposals would necessarily gain planning permission. All planning applications are considered on their own merits against the development plan, and any relevant material considerations at the time."
The Honiton sites and draft recommendations are:
- Mountbatten Park where better drainage would be installed to increase the pitch capacity on site and replace existing the clubhouse with a two-storey building to serve all proposed pitches in this vicinity.
- St Rita's - install drainage to increase pitch capacity on site.
- All Hallows - install drainage and floodlights.
- Honiton Community College - install floodlit sand-based artificial pitch.
- St Rita's extension - new pitches at the site made up of:
- Two full size football pitches for youth teams.
- Two mini football pitches meant for 5-a-side matches.
- Additional car parking at the site
- Former Showground - new pitches at the site comprising:
- Two senior rugby pitches
- Three mid size rugby pitches
- Clubhouse and parking
The draft Honiton Sports Pitch Strategy can be accessed at:
Alternatively, a hard copy is available at reception at East Devon District Council's offices at Knowle, in Sidmouth.
For the orginal article, visit www.viewnews.co.uk.