05 JUN 2010

Meeting in Dartmouth after the great fire

On this day I visited Dartmouth to meet the Mayor, Richard Rendle, Simon Entwistle, Chair of the freeholders group and Nigel Way. After a discussion of the issues, an inspection of the site brought home the scale of the devastation to the heart of Dartmouth. It is clear that the community has done an amazing job in re-housing all those who were made homeless as a result of the fire and the Mayor's fund has been set up to raise funds for some immediate help for those who have lost so much.

The focus was on what needs to be done to get Dartmouth back on its feet for the summer season. The first priority is to sort out the traffic flow as there are reports of temporary signs being moved and numerous collisions and holdups as confusion arises over the new one way system.

I call on the Chief Traffic Engineer for Devon to review the urgency of the situation and arrange for permanent signage to be installed as soon as possible. Dartmouth traders are already suffering as a result of the hike in business rates and cannot afford to suffer further loss if visitors stay away because of traffic chaos.

I am confident that South Hams District Council will prioritise any planning arrangements needed for rebuilding of these lovely buildings.

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