24 January 2020
The Progressive Group on Exeter City Council has welcomed the U-turn by the Labour run council on the Clifton Hill. While the Sports centre and car park will be replaced with 44 new houses, the Council has agreed that the green space, ski slope and golf range will now be saved. Independent councillor for Newtown and St Leonard’s, Jemima Moore, who campaigned to save Clifton Hill, described it as a major victory for the area and for the people of Exeter.
Cllr Jemima Moore said:
“This is a victory for the local area; for local residents and the people of Exeter, who will be able to continue to enjoy this valuable green space and use the facilities offered by the ski slope and golf ranges. It shows what can be achieved when residents pull together in determined effort to protect those things that are valuable to the local community.”
Cllr Moore is part of the Progressive Group on the council which also consists of two Liberal Democrat councillors and one Green councillor. Both the Lib Dems and Greens stood back in Newtown and St Leonard’s in the 2019 local elections to show support for the campaign to save Clifton Hill and to give Jemima Moore a clear run in the ward, where she took the seat from Labour.
Cllr Kevin Mitchell, Progressive Group leader and Lib Dem councillor for Duryard and St James, said:
"The Progressive Group has been formed by individuals from different political backgrounds, but we all have one thing in common - we passionately care about our communities. The Conservative official opposition group has lacked any teeth within the council chamber, a void that the Progressive Group has filled and has proven itself to be the true effective opposition. I am extremely proud of councillor Jemima Moore's achievement in this matter and together we will continue to hold the Labour dominated Council to account."
Commenting on the development proposals for Clifton Hill, Lib Dem Councillor Mike Mitchell said:
"We do need more housing for local families in the city centre, and we are concerned that only 25% of this development is made up of affordable housing - well below the Council's standard 35% of any development."
Diana Moore, Green Party councillor for St David’s, added:
“Faced with a climate emergency, the Council needs to work with communities to protect and enhance our valuable green spaces and community facilities. This massive U-turn by Labour on Clifton Hill is welcome but has only been achieved by the Council taking on a further significant loan to complete the deal with its development company. We will work to ensure that this deal is completed within the three month deadline the Council's Executive have set."
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