Calls for Seaton public meeting

A SEATON businessman is protesting against the town council s proposals to move to offices without public consultation.

A SEATON businessman is protesting against the town council's proposals to move to offices without public consultation.

Glenn Salter, of GW Meats in Queen Street, has put a board outside his shop demanding a public meeting.

Mayor Sandra Semple has said there will be no public consultation and the council's decision is final.

The move comes following the council's announcement to move to Willoughby House at a cost of �500,000 - to be paid over 25 years.

Mr Salter said: "It's putting the town in debt for 25 years with the risk of losing the town hall. There needs to be public consultation because it's such a big decision.

"It's a huge amount of money to be spending at a time when Seaton is not doing as well as it could be.

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"I'm not against moving if it's going to benefit the town and not cause a huge amount of problems. I want to know what it going to do for the town, not the council. At the moment I can't see any reason for the move. The town hall seems perfectly adequate."

He said he feared what would happen to the town's museum if the council were to move.

He added that the money could be better spent elsewhere -such as on youth facilities.

His placard calls on the council to hold a public meeting to explain how they are spending the residents' 'hard earned cash.'

Mr Salter said: "Everybody who has come into the shop has agreed. It's been very positive."

Mrs Semple said: "We have made our decision and we are going to do it. With something like this, where we are going to buy something, we can't take all that time. It just isn't possible to do it over public consultation.

"If we are successful in getting Willoughby House, there will be benefits for the town which we are not discussing yet - there's no point if we haven't got it. If and when we get it, the benefits will be subject to public consultation."

"She added that the town hall would not be affected by a move, as it did not belong to the town council and they only rented one room.