August 2017

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Published on 30 August 2017

Dawlish Countryside Park to officially open on Sunday 3 September

View across Dawlish Countryside Park which will be officially opened on Sunday 3 September.

An official opening ceremony for the vast, new 65-acre Dawlish Countryside Park will take place on Sunday 3 September. The ribbon-cutting ceremony will take place at 12.30pm and will be carried out by the South East Devon Habitat Regulations Executive Committee (SEDHREC): Cllr Rachel Sutton on behalf of Cllr Daniel Gottschalk (Chair) for Exeter City Council, Cllr Humphrey Clemens for Teignbridge District Council and Cllr Paul Diviani for East Devon District Council, on behalf of Cllr Phil Twiss who is unable to attend.

SEDHREC is partnership of Teignbridge, Exeter and East Devon Councils set up to help protect key conservation sites at Dawlish Warren, the Exe Estuary and East Devon’s Pebblebed Heaths. The 26.4 hectare site was purchased with money from developers of new housing across the three council areas.

There will be an official unveiling of the site at 12.45pm by Chairman of Teignbridge District Council, Cllr Tim Golder.

The opening ceremony will be part of a free family fun day where ‘dogs can play’. It will be a fun-packed day for all ages to enjoy, with or without a dog. Activities will include mask making, mini-beast safari, stoneage activities, brass rubbing trail, mystery history and archaeology, dog tricks and agility show, canine first aid demonstrations as well as walks with landscape views from around the site. Bring a picnic and enjoy the day!

Located on the outskirts of Dawlish near Sainsbury’s on Exeter Road (EX7 0PA), the free car park is expected to be very busy, so why not car share, or cycle to the Countryside Park. There are pedestrian entrances on Shutterton Lane and Orchard Lane. You can also get the bus to Port Road bus stop which is adjacent to the Countryside Park.

Cllr Daniel Gottschalk, Chair of SEDHREC and Exeter’s Executive Member for City Development, said:

“This momentous occasion marks the first of many significant milestones that the South East Devon Habitat Regulations Partnership aims to achieve.

“This Countryside Park would not have been possible without the three local authorities working successfully together. This innovative work is a sign of what is possible when Councils pool resources and work together in the interests of all of our residents, ensuring much-needed new homes are provided as well as protecting our special coast and countryside for many years to come.”

Cllr Humphrey Clemens, Teignbridge’s Executive Member for Housing and Planning, said:

"Ably supported by officer expertise, Teignbridge took the brave decision to embark on this project with the support of East Devon and Exeter Councils. Teignbridge purchased the land on behalf of the three councils, which together will pay for the cost of land purchase, establishing the site and ongoing maintenance, using contributions from developers of new housing.

“It’s wonderful to see this natural green space opening, where lots of people will enjoy everything it has to offer. It’s fantastic news for dog walkers too, giving them a large area where their dogs can run free as an alternative to Dawlish Warren. “This area of countryside will remain permanently as a valuable green space. It ensures the Councils meet their legal obligations and adhere to their Local Plans, making sure development only takes place in agreed areas.”