WATCHET’S East Quay is looking forward to a new lease of life after councillors approved an agreement with the operator of Watchet Marina to develop part of the site.
The Somerset County Gazette reported last month how West Somerset Council had approved the plan subject to financial discussions.
Watchet Marine Limited has purchased the site for a one-off payment of £20,000 plus an annual £1 peppercorn rent.
James Burnell, marina manager, expressed his delight at the deal.
He said: “We are extremely pleased and this is a great step forward. “The council has financially approved plans and is now looking at the terms and conditions.
“This is such positive news, not just for the marina but also for the town of Watchet and I’ve heard nothing but positive things.
“We want to make the marina more attractive to marina related businesses and both myself and the council are keen to get started as soon as possible.”
Mr Burnell’s plans for the marina include secure parking, boatyard storage and having more marina-related businesses.
Onion Collective, a Watchet based social enterprise, is also carrying out work to determine how the remaining land on East Quay and the youth club site could be developed.
They are asking people in Watchet what they think is needed to create a stronger future for Watchet.
Georgie Grant, one of the Onion Collective directors, said: “This is a really exciting opportunity to create a development proposal for Watchet that represents the needs and desires of local people and offers a strong sustainable future.
“Watchet is a town that screams potential; it has beauty, a strong cultural identity and a thriving community.
“It deserves a development proposal that will highlight all the positive things Watchet has going for it.”
“However, in order to start formulating these ideas we need to check that what we think the community wants is actually representative today.”
The Onion Collective was awarded £79,000 from the Social Investment Business to create proposals for key areas in Watchet.
Results from the questionnaire and ongoing stakeholder consultations will inform the proposed business model.
Once a model is in place, funding to pay for the actual development of the project can then be applied for.
To take the questionnaire, visit www.onioncollective.co.uk but if you do not have access to the internet you can contact Georgie on 07940-950396 to arrange for a hard copy of the survey to be sent.