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Brixham Breakwater Beach Protected by Council Amidst Controversy



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Torbay Council’s cabinet members received a standing ovation in a packed chamber after passing a motion to safeguard Brixham’s iconic Breakwater Beach area from potential over-development.

During a well-attended meeting in Torquay, where nearly 100 individuals gathered, the council discussed the transformation of the council-owned Breakwater car park into an ‘asset of community value’.

This designation signifies an official acknowledgment that the car park primarily serves to enhance the social well-being and interests of the local community, ensuring that should the council ever consider selling it, the local community would have the first opportunity to acquire the property.

The decision also imposes restrictions on any potential redevelopment plans for the site by the tenant of the Breakwater Bistro, Jack Turton, preventing any encroachment onto the car park or beach area.

Last year, Turton unveiled ambitious plans to ‘revamp’ the location, triggering strong opposition from the community. The proposed vibrant buildings were criticized as ‘unsightly’ and ‘out of place’.

Following the backlash, designers committed to revising the plans to align with the community’s preferences, emphasizing the structural issues of the current bistro building that necessitate replacement.

The initial proposal, valued at £25 million, outlined a 44-bed hotel, spa, and beachside bistro. However, its colorful design drew comparisons to the fictional setting of children’s TV series, Balamory.

The cabinet meeting followed an application by the Breakwater Beach Community Group to secure the area’s protection, with council officials advocating in favor of the request.

Cllr Jackie Thomas voiced her support for the community’s passionate desire to safeguard the land, endorsing the move wholeheartedly, while ward councillor Anna Tolchard highlighted the sentimental value of Breakwater Beach to Brixham residents, evident through the significant turnout at the meeting.

Cllr Adam Billings emphasized the recreational utility and community significance of the area, underscoring the necessity to preserve it. Cllr Chris Lewis stressed the importance of developer-community collaboration, emphasizing the shared goal of enhancing Brixham collectively.

Unanimously, cabinet members approved the proposal to safeguard the car park and beach area, marking a significant victory for community-driven preservation efforts.

Rachel Adams

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