Say ‘oui’ plea to highlighting French connection

Seaton Town Council urges residents to vote to name the new public realm after twin town Thury-Harcourt

Seaton residents are being urged to say “oui” to a permanent reminder of their French connection.

They are being asked to back plans to name the new public realm, at The Underfleet, after their twin town of Thury Harcourt.

Suggestions being supported by the town council include calling it Thury-Harcourt Place or Place Thury-Harcourt.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the cross-channel partnership and Seaton and District Twinning Association is planning special celebrations to mark the milestone in 2013.

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Chairman Clare Jones said: “The people of Thury-Harcourt have a great affection and respect for the town and the people of Seaton. Long ago, they named a street ‘rue de Seaton’.

“In Seaton, unlike most twinned towns in the UK, we have no street or public place named to mark our longstanding friendship with our twin town. For years it has been a source of regret and even embarrassment.

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“The twinning association feel that such a naming would help to give a focus for visitors from France and other countries where twinning is part of the local culture. Any naming would also bring press publicity in France and Germany as Thury Harcourt is also twinned with Heimbuchenthal.”

Town clerk Tony Le Riche said: “The town council and the twinning association have worked together for six months to bring this about. The council is very supportive of recognising its civic Link with Thury-Harcourt and but we feel that the people of Seaton should be given the chance to vote on any name or to put forward other suggestions.”

The Public Realm is owned by East Devon District Council and Seaton member Stephanie Jones said: “The chance to name new areas in the town are seldom and to name the public realm after our twin town seems very appropriate. I feel that would send out a message to them that we warmly welcome all visitors to the town even from another country.”

People can have their say on a name for the public realm at a series of events this week. There will be a display at the town hall and a table at the farmers’ market from 9am to 1pm tomorrow (Friday December 21) .

There will also be a stall at the Public Realm from 10am to noon on Saturday, December 22.

Full details of where to make suggestions will be available on the town council website:

The outcome of the public consultation will be reported to a meeting of the authority on January 14.

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