Controversial bench approved

PUBLISHED: 08:46 13 March 2008 | UPDATED: 21:37 15 June 2010

WILL a public bench in Old Elm Road, Honiton, aid walkers on their way to and from Tesco or create a vantage point for burglars?

WILL a public bench in Old Elm Road, Honiton, aid walkers on their way to and from Tesco or create a vantage point for burglars?That's the question town councillors had to ponder when considering a proposal for the seat.Councillor Peter Fleming visited nearby householders on Monday morning and came away with a negative feeling."In principle, people were in favour," he said. "But about 90 per cent were worried about the consequences of disruptive behaviour."Some had even expressed a fear that the bench would be used by thieves to watch for when people went out.Only one person visited by Councillor Fleming expressed no objection.Beer cans and rubbish had already been thrown into householders' gardens, he said. "From what they have said, they don't want it," Councillor Fleming reported.However, Councillor Michael Teare said he lives on the Heathfield Estate and can see how a bench on the main route to Tesco would be of benefit to many elderly people.Councillor Teare said he had experienced no cases of anti-social behaviour and that the bench idea was "very sensible".The council agreed that a public bench should be sited in Old Elm Road.


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