I imagine (and I use the word imagine because I can't find any information anywhere on the town council website pertaining to this lawn working group) that this group is meeting again today at 10.00am. Somewhere in the Manor House. What they will be discussing and what they have discussed so far still not known by us, the electorate.
It has been suggested to me that in the absence of any information concerning this working group being on the town council website, and no information about it in the Gazette, that I should write a letter for publication in said paper putting to a wider audience what I know about the working group (which is on the previous thread).
I am in two minds about this.
Pro - if I think more people should know of the working group's existence, who is on it, when it meets etc then in the absence of anyone else putting that info in a wider public domain then someone (me?) needs to do so.
Con - my bloody minded streak is now coming into play which is going along the lines of "if the council won't/doesn't want to publicise the working party's existence then why should I? Why should I draw the public's attention to the fact that it (so I am led to understand) agreed at its first meeting that it wanted the public's involvement by way of suggestions for the future of the lawn but then put nothing to this effect on the town council's website and had nothing in the Gazette to draw the public's attention to the fact that the lawn working party wanted their suggestions.
So, if you have been following this saga and think that I should write a letter to the Gaz please let me know by hitting 'agree'. If the response is low then I won't bother.
I've now been told that technical difficulties have stopped information about this working group being put on the town council website.
These technical issues are being looked into.
Watch this space....
There's a letter in today's Gazette concerning what might be done to the bandstand
Here's how to attract people to a town centre!
I remember something similar being mooted for Dawlish town centre in the Dawlish Gazette one April Fool's Day circa 2009.
The chair of the town council lawn working group is recently retired mayor Cllr Martin Wrigley. This is an excerpt from his retiring as mayor speech given at the annual town council meeting held last week.
Thinking about the events for the years brings us to the Lawn Working Group. This group has met a number of times and has started by looking at the way residents and visitors use the lawn. It is looking at both what is valued and needs to be kept and what needs to be improved or enhanced. Balancing the needs for an open flexible green space – the heart and lungs of Dawlish – with the needs to attract and keep people in the centre of town is not simple. I’m grateful to the group who are working together well and having productive meetings that are starting to draw out a vision for the Lawn. We need to build a consensus in the town for that vision to enable Dawlish to flourish.
Nice to know we have a transparent lawn working group. When will it come into view?
Very good question majorp. Perhaps one of the below (who are all members of the working group) might have an answer?
Councillor Martin Wrigley – Chairman
Councillor Noel Nickless – Vice Chairman
Councillor Alison Foden
Councillor Lin Goodman-Bradbury
Councillor Val Mawhood
Councillor Gary Taylor
(the Mayor and Deputy Mayor have ex-officio status)
In addition to
Trevor Stratford – on behalf of Dawlish Celebrates Carnival
Helen Wills – on behalf of Dawlish Royal British Legion
Vanessa Ryley / David Force – on behalf of Dawlish Chamber of Trade
Now that the band have been exposed, when will they start to play the music I wonder?
Although there is nothing on the town council website about this working group I understand that the meetings are open to the public to observe should they so wish. 10.00am Fridays, The Manor House.
I am putting that information on here as I am not aware that it appears anywhere else.
A cynic might say that means that whilst the meeting, de jure, is an open one, that de facto it is being held in closed session.
The logic of all this defies me. It is a bit like the working party wanting the Dawlish public to feed in their ideas about the future of the lawn but then not telling the Dawlish public that is what they are able to do.
I am beginning to feel that I have fallen down a rabbit hole somewhere.
Yours in wonderland
There are many factors in all of this that show me what a waste of time all the councillors are. First your councillor claims to represent your interests, so why hasn't your councillor asked the question of the town clerk who normally organises the show, why it is not been made known generally to other members of the public.
Members of the public should not have to ask what is going on within council, they should be made aware. If there is nothing in the previous minutes about this pending meeting, then your councillor is duty bound to find out why not and get something done about it. We cannot and should not have meetings conducted (which this meeting apparently is) behind closed doors, even though some members of the public through this site have been made aware. Everyone should be made aware and then choose whether or not they attend the metting.
See below information I have received from a member of the Lawn working group. I feel free to put it on here as I made a point that any information I received I would share with other members of the general public.
The working party have been tasked to build a report including recommendations for improvements to take back to full council as soon as possible. "
I have just had some further email correspondence about this matter.
The technical problems (see my post dated 27th April) still seem to be unresolved - thus nothing on the town council website.
The working group has now met 5 times.
Other than maintaining The Lawn and replacing the bandstand....just LEAVE IT ALONE.
In my opinion, if this working group has its way there will be a lot more tarmac, concrete, mini play park and a lot less grass and trees....that's in my opinion. Did I say that this was IN MY OPINION!
Quite a big discussion on this on EOD discussion page.
So there is Flo - thanks for the heads up. I see that contributors to the thread on EoD include not only ex but also present councillors. Pity they don't post on here as well then!
I don't have an fb account. But should some kind soul have one who also reads this site perhaps they could put some info on that EoD thread as to when and where the working party meets and who is on it etc.
that's it, well done @Lynne, i couldn't work out how to link to the discussion!
Have now been told that ex town councillors Mary Lowther and Linda Petherick are also members of the lawn working group.
There is a letter in today's Gazette concerning where the playpark might (now) be located - by the tourist information office.
(and I am so glad that people are writing letters to the Gazette about this working party for as I have already pointed out (and pointed out to some of those who sit on it!) there is no information whatsoever about this working party on the town council website.)
Personally I think this lack of transparency is just asking for trouble given how controversial the subject is concerning the future of the lawn and whether or not there should be a playpark and if so where it should be located etc etc.
I've been told that my name is mentioned above as being part of the working group.
I'm not, unfortunately the group meets on the only day of the week that I can't make.
Sorry Helen - I posted the information given to me by the town clerk and I can't edit the post as the edit facility is no longer available.
Lynn you or any members of the public can attend the lawn meeting on Friday morning the group is feeding back at the next council meeting.
That's ok Lynne, at the time of your post I was going to be part of the group.
Thanks for posting that information @Lindapetherick. I have been trying to get that information out and about to others as well (see my post above dated 10th may).
I'm a bit like Helen in that my Friday mornings are otherwise occupied.
Can you ask why nothing whatsoever concerning this working group is on the town council website? Thanks
The interim report concerning proposals for the future of the lawn can be viewed via the link below. The presentation starts at about 29 mins into the meeting and lasts for about 30 mins.
AGENDA 1. Apologies for Absence. 2. Declarations of Interest – to declare any disclosable interests relating to the ...
Thank you Lynne.
Thank you Lynne, but I wish they would sort the audio out, you can barely hear what they are saying, even with the audio turned up on youtube and my laptop. Anyone else having the same issue?
Yes on occasions I also have difficulty with hearing certain councillors but I could hear relatively easily what Cllr Wrigley said in his presentation.
Which was, to sum up, putting the playpark down where the TIC is. Have it aimed at up to 12 years of age. Victorian type bandstand to replace what is there presently.
Feel sure there will be stuff about all of this in this coming Wednesday's Dawlish Gazette.
And the market walk i thought that was a great idea.
Click on link below for more info about the lawn working party and what is suggesting (so far).
A lot of good thoughts have been collated there. It seems that the Working Group are doing a good job so far - fair play to them.
Play park costs (from the link I've given above)
Play Area • Maintenance – Play equipment lasts about 10 years – Previous large park design around £250,000 – Maintenance would be annual fixes and upkeep, plus allowance to replace the lot in ten years time • Approx £5,000 annual fixes • £25,000 annual allowance towards replacement
This link will take you to the town council webpage concerning the lawn working group.
Lynn they couldn’t add information to the council website until the lawn group had completed the work we were asked to do. We completed that 2 weeks ago and it is now in the website.
Linda - I was told by a senior member of the working party some few weeks back that the reason there was nothing on the council's website about the lawn working party was because of technical problems. What I thought should have been on the council's website from the very first was 1) who was on the working party, 2) when and where it met and 3) that although there was/is no statutory requirement for it to be so, the members of the group had agreed that the meetings should be open to the public to observe.
Given that there was no information about 1-3 on the council website or in the local press how could members of the public 1) know that they could/can attend and 2) where and when the lawn working party met/meets.
Look at my postings at the very top of this thread.
For info here is the link that will take you to the earlier thread about the lawn working party
All that information was on the relevant minutes of the town council meeting. But it is now on the website so Information now readily avaible.
Which town council meeting was that? Can you give me a link please? I cannot find anything. Are you referring to the town council meeting held earlier this month? As I type this, the minutes for that meeting are not yet published on the town council's website.
The first meeting of the lawn working party took place in early April and to my knowledge the only info put in the public domain, until the town council meeting earlier this month, concerning who is on it, when and where it meets was info proactively acquired by me which I then put on this website.
For info - the section on the town council's website concerning the lawn working party was only placed there last week.
(source: email response from Dawlish Town Clerk)
That’s right Lynn, when the presentation was prepared and delivered to the council. Do feel free to attend any of the meetings on Friday mornings at 10am be lovely to see you there and get your thoughts.
Thank you Linda but I don't have to be there (anymore than does anyone else) to express my thoughts given that we now all know who sits on the working party. If we wish to contact the working party members, the cllrs certainly, then we know how to contact them.
I expressed my thoughts to Cllr Mawhood when she sent out her round robin email back at the beginning of April asking for contributions.
With regard to my thoughts on the progress and suggestions that have come forth so far, they are of a positive variety (should anyone be interested in knowing that.)
For info (in case anyone is interested) see below text of email I sent Cllr Mawhood in response to her April email request for views from the public on the future of the lawn.
The Waters of the Brook used to generate electricity?
and I then sent Cllr Mawhood a subsequent email suggesting that perhaps enquiries might be made as to the possibility/costs involved etc of using the water flow in the brook to generate electricity. Perhaps enough to light the lights along the brook? And/or generate the electricity supply for, say, a new eco centre on the Brunswick side?
I remember when the water from the brook was diverted and turned the wheel which is now turned by ELECTRICITY.
I understand that the flow of water was stopped from running in that leat by John Hoare (Owner of Luscombe estate). Why that happened, I never found out, perhaps someone else has the answer.
It would make sense if the wheel could make electricity, instead of using it to make it go around. Although I haven't seen it turning for some time now, perhaps the cost is too prohibitive for the owners of the cafe to do it.
The leat runs through a lot of private properties and is not always maintained by them, one person diverted to feed into his fishpond, one other got it diverted into a culvert by TDC because it 'flooded' his basement, the pond on Luscombe Castle that fed it was also not always maintained and the water diverted from there too. So that's just some of the reasons that the leat is not used.
I was part of the water wheel project and the wheel is turned by a pump feeding from a 'tank' of water at the bottom of the wheel, the gantry that took water to the wheel was knocked down many years ago and is not practicable to replace - especially when there's no water supply to it. The tank of water is mainly fed from rainwater and at times the level is too low to keep the pum running, the cost of the electricity (which is not a big cost) is met by money raised for the ongoing expenses of the wheel.
The cafe owners have no responsibility for the wheel at all. Currently the wheel needs painting and that process is taking place throughout this year.
So if the wheel has no further use, what is the point of keeping it other than I suppose as a tourist attraction.
I am sure a way could be found to bring it back into use by the original method.
I only once followed the leat from the Newhay, down to its outlet at boat lake. Where on that part did it run through private properties?
Does it not go through private property at Coryton Close.
I wouldn't have thought it would be anywhere near Coryton Close. It runs along the Bartons and then probably somewhere to the lower side of Platation Terrace. So that is where (maybe) it runs through private property. If that is the case, I wouldn't have thought it would be that difficult to find a path to the Wheel in the Brunswick.
The leat runs from the pond at the end of the Newhay and behind lots of houses in the Bartons, also Plantation Terrace. Lots of private properties.
If you want more info then contact Cllr Val Mawhood, she spent many, many hours looking at the Leat once the project of the wheel was started.
The wheelwright who over-saw the restoration said that the building would not support the vibrations of the wheel turning anything inside the property, the wheel itself is propped up slightly to dis-engage it from the main gearing.
The idea of using it to generate electricity is not a new one, that was considered but was not feasible.
The wheel has been preserved because it's special, not for a tourist attraction. It's one of the biggest in the country (apparantly), it's unusual for one of it's size to turn the way it does and also because it's made entirely of metal. And to have one in the town centre is a bit special.
But this thread is about the Lawn....
@Duckileaks, thanks for the background. i know the thread is about the lawn but it's nice to know about the wheel.
Where did the need for a play park in the lawn area come from? Is it that some councillors are trying to think of something that might be needed, but don't really know what it is. What else could form an attraction for this area or should it be left well alone?
In a few years time - maybe, there may well be sites available closer to the beach. If the railway line is to be pushed 30 mtrs out to sea from the Langstone Rock (Not Red Rock) as many people call it to the other side of Parsons Rock, then Network rail may well have plenty of surplus land which could be open to offers as to what can be done with it.
Sadly, some people just see a big space and feel a need to fill it! The lawn area is always busy with people just enjoying the space, the benches, the brook, the wild fowl and the bowling.Why do we need a watered down version of what Paignton and Teignmouth have? We have something they don’t so let’s not spoil it!
The next time you walk by the tourist office take a good look at the wonderful planted area where people sit and enjoy the tranquility of watching the swans and the wild life around this area. Now imagine it with plastic swings and slides, which would you prefer? Because if the minority have their way that's what you will see If the Council have their way they will ruin a little beauty spot. Think about that. Leave it as it is !!!!!! What is the objection to having the play park behind the bandstand? Surly that would be a better location with it being a bigger area with perhaps less major demolition and construction therefore the cost's would be less. I have re-read the full thread on this issue, and I don't know if the decision has been made or not. In the early clandestine meetings the people of Dawlish need to be kept informed and more transparency.
@Brooklyn Bridge - re your last sentence. In the absence of any present town councillors writing on this website suggest you write to Cllr Wrigley who chairs the lawn working party and ask him. firstname.lastname@example.org
There are others, I know who read this website, who were town councillors (2011-2015) when the idea of there being a playpark on the lawn really took off. They could tell you more. As could another ex councillor who has posted on this very thread and who only resigned from the council within the last 12 months.
Today is Friday. The lawn working group should be meeting this morning at the Manor House. 10.00am. Members of the public can attend and observe these meetings. If you went along you might be able to find out more.
Money for the playpark bear in mind this. Money that is presently in the pot for the playpark falls short of what is required and is time limited as to when it has to be spent. Within the very near future as it happens.
So where will the money come from to cover the shortfall? And will it be found in time to meet the deadline that the already acquired funding has?
Play Area • Maintenance – Play equipment lasts about 10 years – Previous large park design around £250,000 – Maintenance would be annual fixes and upkeep, plus allowance to replace the lot in ten years time • Approx £5,000 annual fixes • £25,000 annual allowance towards replacement
Dawlish Town Council has been awarded £19,212 for Dawlish Playpark. To install a new Playpark in Dawlish, which will include a train in GWR colours.
The grant has come from GWRs Customer and Community Improvement Fund.
People have to drive or walk to the new countryside park along exeter road. Why can't the playpark at Sandy Lane be expanded to cater for those that want to use it using the same method to get to the play park as they now do to get to the countryside park. There would then be no need to interfer with the lawn are of the town.
How many more play areas does this town need?
There is some S106 money via the Sainsbury's development, as well I believe. That is time limited and must be spent by next year/year after? I believe the GWR money also has a similar time by when it must be spent.
Would look it all up but it is such a gorgeous evening that I am now going out into the garden.
If someone from the working group should read this and know the exact amounts of money and by which time it has to be spent then perhaps they might let us all know by posting the info on here.
Too much to ask?
BTW - had on one of my rare forays into the town today. Overheard a couple of tourists bemoaning the lack of shops. But not to worry eh as a playpark in the town will bring all the shops back. Won't it? Well, won't it?
Has there been a vote on this issue if not why not? Should there be a vote by the residents of Dawlish? And do it like an election with votes submitted at the Manor. Just have two questions on the ballot.
1. Should the proposed playground be located outside the tourist office?
2. Or no!
And hoping that the results would not be fixed in favour.
Could anyone on this forum give any advice on this option?
Having a playpark on the lawn - a potted history
Okay, so........back in 2014 (I think it was) there was a public consultation about whether or not there should be a playpark on the lawn. Not sure if there was anything online but definitely there was a public consultation event in the town somewhere. Both Linda Petherick and Margaret Swift were town councillors at the time so perhaps they might be able to give you/us more information.
Deedoodle might also care to give you his thoughts on the process of that consultation, the outcome, and how the results were interpreted.
At some point circa 2014 the idea of having a playpark by the TIC was considered but was discounted, I believe, because of the costs involved. That is how I understand the situation but others may either confirm that or give alternative reasons for the site of the proposed playpark subsequently being moved to the site between the bandstand and the bowling green.
BUT - what the public were consulted on in 2014 (a playpark taking up the whole of that space between the bandstand and the bowling green) and what was subsequently put forward (something much smaller and only taking up part of that site and for under 8 year olds only) were two entirely different things.
Come 2015 and local elections and some 2011-2015 town councillors didn't stand for re-election or did, and didn't get relected. Either way the outcome was that there were new Cllrs on the town council. Not all supportive of there being a playpark anywhere on the lawn let alone at the spot between the bandstand and the bowling green.
Fast forward to 2017. The town council's Civic Amenities Committee passed a resolution, by way of the casting vote of the Chair, supporting the idea that there should be a playpark on the lawn. I think there were only three Cllrs present at that meeting. So CAC recommendation goes to full council and is passed by the full council but it is a majority vote not a unanimous one. Susbsequent Finance and General Purposes Committee agrees £4,000 towards hiring consultants to try and find more funding for the playpark.
Cllr Foden launches petition against there being a playpark anywhere on the lawn.
This is a continuing contentious issue (town council policy for there to be a playpark on the lawn not withstanding) and so another working party is set up to look at the matter. This working party has been meeting since the beginning of April of this year and is suggesting that the playpark should be located by the TIC.
This working party has given an interim report to the town council (I have given links to that report on this thread) and will report again sometime in the next few months.
Whatever they propose will then go out to public consultation. However, how the public will be able to express their views on the proposals for the future of the lawn is not yet known.
I hope that helps and apologies in advance to others who know more about all of this than I if I am mistaken in anyway as to my interpretation of events and their timeline.
@Brooklyn Bridge (23 june 11:12hrs). well said, but how many times in the past has the dawlish council just done what ever it pleased. even when they have sought the residents input?
I see we no longer have anyone for the council participating on this forum.
In my opinion the gwr £19,212 may or may not have something todo with the placing of the play park for the under 8's.
In 2104 the main focus for the consultation was about the proposal to build the so called arts centre on the lawn, you know, the one that looked like an armadillo! This was followed by a questionnaire which, on its first iteration, was full of loaded questions, (a little bit like the last questionnaire) but as that went to the full council changes were made to make it more impartial. The vast majority of those who completed the questionnaire did not want the armadillo building on the lawn. From memory I believe there was one question (could have been two) about a Playpark on the lawn and, again from memory, there was no clear picture to emerge about whether there should be one and where is should be placed.
As this is a really fundamental change to the landscape of the town centre and a possible culture change, as happened at Dawlish Warren when the council agreed to bulldoze the individuals huts and replace them with the monstrosity we have now, then there should be a referendum so the good folk of Dawlish have a say about their town, as they did when the Manor House was threatened.
Yes it was 2016 not 2014. Getting old - time merges.
I have found this thread http://www.dawlish.com/thread/details/45050 and there are two others as well.
I think that back in 2014 the question posed was along the lines of Do you want a playpark on the lawn?
As the majority of those who responded said yes (I don't know the figures in favour) then that was why in 2016 when a further consultation was held concerning the lawn and a playpark the questions concerned only where it should be sited on the lawn and not whether or not there should be a play park (that question having been asked back in 2014).
@webmaster. don't you think it's time to move on to part three of this gripping saga ? before my scrolling finger seizes up.
Thank you, Lynne, for that link. I had read it last year but re-read once more to familiarize with the topic. Is the question on this issue about the play park done and dusted? Or is there going to be an open forum and some sort of voting system. The previous survey was flawed in so many ways I'm surprised they got away with it, or have they? Do they have funding for this progject, from reading previous post I would presume yes and they have got to spend it, right. I also gather that members of the public are welcome to attend but not allowed any input. This option of putting it where the TIC is located has to be stopped, what can we do? However I do have another option for the Council. If they have the money to spend I would suggest that the play park at the Manor be moved over the other side of the brook and enhanced into a big, BIG adventure play park right outside the Manor offices where parents and kids could enjoy themselfs by looking in the windows and see our hard working Councilers going about their daily routine. That area would be a great spot as you have developed trees plenty of grass and plenty of foilage and plants, be a great spot. But NOT on our lawn and definatly NOT outside the TIC. Come on guys what can we do.
When I was a youngster, we had one play park that served everybody in about a 2mile radius. Why do we need another one? Why can'y the ones we already have be brought up to date if that is what is needed.
How many play parks are there in Dawlish at present and where are they situated?
@Lynne, i don’t know whether the majority of those who chose to answer the question did say yes but many did not answer that question as that wasn’t the prime forcus for the survey.
A referendum is required to determine once and for all whether the people of Dawlish want a Playpark in the vicinity of the lawn area or not. This decision should not be taken lightly and by a few self serving individuals.
@Brooklynbridge (and others) - elections to Dawlish town council and Teignbridge district council are due to take place next May. Why not, nearer the time, ask the candidates where they stand on the issue of
1. Should there be a playpark on the lawn at all
2. If so, where should it be located
Ask questions and get answers in writing. It is remarkable what short memories and forgetfulness politicians can have.......
You (and others) could also write letters to the Gazette about this. But be prepared for pushback from those who wish to see a playpark on the lawn (for whatever reasons).
Funding for this project - there is money that has been put aside towards the playpark from the S106 monies from the Sainsbury's development and from GWR. Both have to be spent within the next two years I believe. So where is the rest of the money coming from? And by when? Dawlish will be on the receiving end of more money called CIL (Community Infrastructure Levy) that will come to it by way of new housing development. But.......as all that housing development will be built out over time so, presumably, will the monies coming into Dawlish.
Towards the top of this thread is a list of those who sit on the lawn working party. Helen Wills is now not a member of the working party but Linda Petherick is. All of those persons listed should have much more up to date information on what is going on re the playpark than the rest of us. So my suggestion to all those with concerns is to contact one, some, or all of the councillors on the lawn working party and pose your questions to them.
Here are the email addresses of the councillors:
Councillor Martin Wrigley – Chairman email@example.com
Councillor Noel Nickless – Vice Chairman firstname.lastname@example.org
Councillor Alison Foden email@example.com
Councillor Lin Goodman-Bradbury firstname.lastname@example.org
Councillor Val Mawhood email@example.com
Councillor Gary Taylor firstname.lastname@example.org
I believe the project which the GWR money covers has to be completed by the end of next March.
Lynne, thanks for the email list. I had composed an email to all the Councillors, but for whatever reason it keeps bouncing back to me. I have checked and re-checked the email list you posted. I believe there is a block on their in boxes.
Just checked and unless I need to go to Specsavers the email addresses above are as shown on the town council website. But they are new ones. Perhaps not working yet?
Cllr Wrigley email@example.com
Cllr Nickless firstname.lastname@example.org
Cllr Foden email@example.com
Cllr Goodman-bradbury firstname.lastname@example.org
Cllr Mawhood email@example.com
Cllr Taylor firstname.lastname@example.org
Info here about playpark funding and deadlines.
Thanks once more Lynne for what may be an updated email listing. I will try sending my email again later today. My email lays out that I am opposed to the play park being located outside the (TIC) office. Perhaps those of you on this forum would take the opportunity to do the same and send in via email to all the councilors your objection. If I can figure out how to copy and paste onto this site I will do that, but I just can't seem to be able to do it.
Highlight what you want to paste. ctrl c it, then go to the post it page, make sure the cursor is blinking, as is here, then ctrl v it.
If I can figure out how to copy and paste onto this site I will do that, but I just can't seem to be able to do it.