The cost of EDDC’s relocation project, originally stated to be “cost neutral” has been spiralling for years (see link below*). The following Freedom Of Information (FOI) Request was lodged on 26th November 2017, and awaits a response:
Dear East Devon District Council,
I would like to make a formal request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. I am also making this Request under the Environmental Impact Regulations 2004 which require disclosure on the part of Local Authorities.
Please let me have the costs to date of the Knowle relocation project, to include all preliminary pre “moving decision” costs, and subsequent costs of all work associated with the intended reallocation, including those at The Knowle, Manstone, the intended Honiton site and Exmouth Town Hall
I should also like to know the current and projected costs of the Exmouth Town Hall move, (including all associated costs such as moving, staff compensation and travel costs and fitting out costs), and for Honiton and costs associated with the “mothballing” of various parts of the Knowle contingent upon the intended relocation of 90 staff to Exmouth.
PegasusLife’s plans to build a large-scale retirement village in this prime parkland location in Sidmouth town, were refused by EDDC’s Development Management Committee almost exactly one year ago (6 Dec 2016). As the 5-day Appeal Inquiry begins tomorrow morning, the wide public interest in EDDC’s controversial relocation plans, has prompted research into the company proposing to buy the Knowle site. See http://futuresforumvgs.blogspot.co.uk/2017/11/knowle-relocation-project-of-paradise.html
The Inspector’s decision is expected within 4 days of the end of the Inquiry.
Philip Hammond this week firmly declared that local homes should be provided by small local companies with a real stake in their community.
A post from East Devon Watch yesterday, reflects on the matter with regard to Knowle. Here is an extract:
‘The recently-leaked ‘Paradise Papers’ on tax havens seem to have revealed an interesting side to the activities of the billion-dollar US equity giant behind Pegasus Life the developer currently appealing EDDC’s refusal to give it planning permission to build 113 luxury flats for old people at Knowle in Sidmouth.
As the Pegasus Life website proudly proclaims, Oaktree Capital Management founded the company in 2012:
The Paradise Papers suggest that, at about the same time, Oaktree was setting up a joint venture with Australian and Chinese billionaires to fund a 3.2 billion dollar casino in Macau through the offices of legal firm Appleby in the the British Virgin Islands tax haven:
Appleby became alarmed about the refusal of Oaktree and its partners to allow identity checks on its shareholders – the cornerstone of global efforts to stop money laundering and the financing of terrorism.
Oaktree and the others allegedly threatened to take their business elsewhere if Appleby insisted on the checks. Appleby didn’t, and the joint venture was duly incorporated in the British Virgin Isles with the shareholders remaining secret! The Casino opened in 2015.
All this is literally thousands of miles from the fond hope expressed by Philip Hammond in this week’s budget speech that local homes should be provided by small local companies with a real stake in their community.’