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New leadership announced at North Devon Council

Councillors Ian Roome, Helen Walker, David Worden and Julie Hunt
18-05-2023 03:59 PM BST
A new leadership has been announced at North Devon Council as members met for the first time since district elections earlier this month.

At an annual council meeting on Thursday, 16 May, Councillor Ian Roome was elected as the new Leader of the Council. Councillor David Worden was elected as Deputy Leader after serving as leader since 2019.

Both will stay in the posts until the next annual council meeting, which will be held on 27 March 2024.

The council also elected its Chair and Vice-Chair at Thursday’s meeting. Councillor Julie Hunt was re-elected as Chair for a third term while Councillor Helen Walker was elected as Vice-Chair.

Councillor Roome says: “I am delighted to be elected as the new leader of North Devon Council and am relishing the opportunity to be able to build on the work of our previous administration. We will continue to work hard to protect the environment, bring economic growth and achieve financial security as a council, and we will also endeavour to address housing needs in the area and work with our partners to reduce crime and antisocial behaviour.

“While I’m under no illusion as to the challenges we face with cost of living pressures and a lack of funding from central Government, I am looking forward to us working together for the benefit of the whole community.”

Councillor Hunt says: “I am honoured to be re-elected to the position of Chair and be able to continue to represent North Devon. I am looking forward to all of our councillors – whether they are long-standing or new members – working together for the good of our district and our communities.”

The council’s Strategy and Resources Committee will meet for the first time on Monday, 5 June.

Information about all North Devon district councillors can be found on our website at

Bathing Season & Dogs on Beaches

clear messages banner
In today’s Clear Messages bulletin, we will be telling you all about the bathing season – what is it and how it’s monitored, and shining some light on which beaches you can and can’t walk your furry friends on during the warmer months. For more information, please keep on reading!Bathing season – what is it and how it’s monitored

This year, bathing season is running from the 15 May to the 30 September.For those of you who aren’t aware of what bathing season is, it’s a period of time when the Environment Agency monitor the water quality of over 400 designated bathing waters – this includes beaches, lakes and rivers.Weekly assessments measure the water quality, and at a number of sites, a daily pollution risk forecasts is issued.While the standard of bathing water quality in England is usually very high, the weather can have a temporary impact on the level of water quality. Knowing more about it can help you plan your trip to one of many beautiful blue spaces and get the most out of it!Annual ratings classify each site as excellent, good, sufficient or poor based on measurements taken over a period of up to four years. An interactive map and more information on specific locations can be found on the Environment Agency’s website.If we are alerted to a pollution risk, we would like to reassure you that we would pop something on our North Devon Council social media channels and have signage put up at the area affected.Dogs and beaches

 dog on beach
Many of the beaches across North Devon are dog-friendly – some have open access all year round, whilst others offer different zones in peak seasons, but all are clearly marked.Most beaches in North Devon are privately owned and most also allow dogs between 1 October and 30 April, however, we would encourage you to please visit our webpage for a full list of which beaches allow dogs, whether they should be kept on a lead and which months they are and aren’t allowed.It’s useful to note that the following privately owned beaches have site-specific enforceable dog controls and do not allow dogs on their beaches between 1 May and 31 September:

beach table

Let’s make a difference together!
Neighbourhood Officers
Don’t forget the power of our local communities! We currently work with partners and community groups to combat issues in targeted areas. If you would like to get involved and keep North Devon beautiful, we welcome any approach for collaboration.
Follow us on Twitter @NDCWardens and Facebook @northdevoncouncil and share our posts to help spread the word.
Don’t forget, if you see us out and about, feel free to come and say hello.

Thanks for taking the time to read this bulletin, we hope you found it useful.

Grants and Community News 9 May

Community Councillor Grants

We have been busy preparing to launch this year’s Community Councillor Grant (CCG) scheme which has been agreed for 2023 to 2027.

… again giving each of our 42 Councillors £1000 to distribute to local projects!

We hope to launch the fund mid-May so keep checking our website and get your application submitted: Community Councillor Grants (CCG)

We hope to launch the fund mid-May so keep checking our website and get your application submitted: Community Councillor Grants (CCG)

Please feel free to give us a call on 01271 388253 to discuss any projects.

The Triangle Trust 1949 Fund

Grants are available to registered charities and organisations for proposals wanting to work with young people who have a criminal conviction or proposals focused on targeted work with high-risk young people on the edge of the criminal justice system.

The Trust’s funding opportunity for work with young people aged 11-25 with criminal convictions is currently open to application with a deadline of 23.59 on Sunday 21st May 2023. Projects supporting the following beneficiaries are likely to be prioritised:

  • Young people from Black or minorities / racialised communities
  • Young people who have experienced the care system, and/or
  • Young women and girls

Organisations wanting to make an application to work with high-risk young people on the edge of the criminal justice system can apply for a grant between Monday 18th September and Sunday 29th October 2023.

The Trust offers grants of up to £80,000 over a 2-year period. The maximum amount available per year is £40,000. Grants are for project costs rather than core funding.

The Trust is particularly interested in proposals that:

  • Demonstrate that they understand the wide range of challenges and issues that will need to be addressed to help a young person succeed after being released from a Young Offenders Institution or prison.
  • Have specific outcomes and targets related to individual development, health and well-being, employability, education, and social cohesion, and/or
  • Show existing work with young people who have been in the criminal justice system is already taking place and can evidence a track record of helping them to achieve positive outcomes.

The Trust usually visits more applicants than it awards grants to. The application process is:

  1. Completion of the online application form on the Triangle Trust website.
  2. The Trust’s representative(s) will visit shortlisted applicants.
  3. Grant awards are normally confirmed 5-6 months once the application deadline has passed.

Further information, guidance and an online application form is available at The Triangle Trust 1949 Fund

To contact the Grants officer, Annie Corpe, call 07716 378564 or email:

Charles Hayward Foundation – Small Grants Fund (Older people)

Grants are available up to £7000 for charities with an annual income of less than £350,000.

This programme wishes to fund preventative and early intervention programmes being delivered at the community level which allow older people to stay in their own homes and remain independent. 

They are particularly interested in seeking out programmes which show some creativity in improving the quality of life of older people which:

  • aim to alleviate isolation and depression in older people, including informal day care or social, physical and recreational activities
  • give practical help, assistance and support for older people living in their own homes
  • address the emotional and practical needs of older carers, or
  • meet the specific needs of people with dementia

Applications will be considered every three months (March, June, September and December). Visit their website Charles Hayward Foundation for further information.


That bit at the end!…

The Burton celebrates 40 years of Michael Morpurgo’s War Horse with a new family-friendly exhibition

The Burton at Bideford is delighted to be hosting a new exhibition celebrating 40 years since the publication of Michael Morpurgo’s beloved modern classic, War Horse. And what better place to celebrate than in the county where the author has lived since the 1970s.

The exhibition was curated to accompany a special 40th anniversary edition of the book published by Farshore in October 2022. The book features a new cover from fine arts photographer, Nine Francois, and is illustrated by the award-winning war and reportage artist, George Butler. 

Michael Morpurgo will be in conversation with Collections and Exhibitions Manager, Warren Collum, at the Burton Art Gallery and Museum on Sunday 18 June at 2pm.

40 Years of War Horse will be on display at the Burton from 22 May until 3 July. The Burton is open daily and admission is free.

Councils re-establish five-year housing supply for northern Devon

North Devon fields
28-04-2023 03:45 PM BST
North Devon Council and Torridge District Council have jointly published a new report which will re-establish a five-year housing land supply for northern Devon.

The report, published on Friday, 28 April, shows northern Devon to have enough available land to meet the area’s housing requirements equivalent to 5.9 years.

Councils are required by national planning policy to show there are enough sites earmarked for development to deliver the amount needed to meet housing requirements for the next five years – a so-called five-year housing land supply.

If councils are unable to show a five-year land supply, they are required to look more favourably on housing proposals that would not usually be considered appropriate. In recent years, this has resulted in the granting of planning permission for housing on sites across northern Devon that were not envisaged for development through the area’s plan for the future.

Re-establishing a five-year housing land supply allows the councils to support only the proposals that contribute towards the long-term vision for northern Devon and the area’s local plan, whilst being able to better resist proposals that fail to do so.

The report comes after more than six months of intensive work by officers at both councils to establish in detail the amount of land available for housing over the coming years, and the number of homes it may deliver. The process has to be backed by robust and detailed evidence and has required officers to engage proactively with developers of individual housing sites to understand and document what their expectations are for delivery over the next few years.

Planning Manager at Torridge District Council, Helen Smith, says: “Torridge and North Devon district councils lost the ability to demonstrate a five-year housing land supply back in 2020 following the approval of a particular housing development at appeal. The disruption caused by COVID, the associated lockdowns and impact on construction activity meant that it hasn’t been possible to re-establish the supply until now. We recognise the impact this has had on many communities and that this will be welcome news to many.”

Head of Place, Property and Regeneration at North Devon Council, Sarah-Jane Mackenzie-Shapland, says: “We are really pleased to be back to a position of being able to demonstrate a five-year housing land supply, affording our respective councils much more control to manage the consideration of proposals for housing. We will still aim to support proposals for the delivery of much needed housing to meet the needs of our local communities but will be in a better position to resist development that doesn’t meet with northern Devon’s plan for the future of our area.”

The Five Year Housing Land Supply Statement is available to view at and

North Devon Council takes part in No Mow May

27-04-2023 11:42 AM BST
North Devon Council is letting the grass grow wild in a number of its green spaces in support of the charity campaign ‘No Mow May’.

No Mow May was first launched in the UK in 2019 by conservation charity Plantlife, and has since spread to other countries, with the goal of creating a more wildlife-friendly environment. The campaign aims to encourage individuals and organisations to lock away their lawnmowers for the month of May in an effort to encourage wildflowers and support local wildlife.

Parks Officer at North Devon Council, Andrew Moulton, says: “By supporting No Mow May, we hope to inspire residents to take small actions that can make a big difference in creating a healthier and more vibrant ecosystem in our local area.”

The council will be leaving two sites to grow wild during May: the first being in Whiddon Valley and the second at Landkey. The council is also encouraging residents to learn more about other eco-friendly practices they can adopt in their daily lives, such as composting and reducing water wastage.

For more information about ‘No Mow May’ and to participate, please visit the Plantlife website.

Hosepipe Ban – South West Water

On Tuesday 25th April 2023, we will be extending our current hosepipe ban to cover most of Devon.

From this date, you will not be permitted to use a hosepipe for non-essential use.  Please note, if you are a registered Blue Badge holder, you are exempt from these restrictions.

To find out if your property is included within the Hosepipe ban area, please visit our online postcode checker here.

Our region remains in drought

Since last summer, our region has been in drought.  Low rainfall and high demand have stopped our reservoirs from recovering to levels we would usually see going into the summer.  Roadford Lake, our main reservoir in Devon, remains around 27% lower than this time last year, despite the recent rain. To see our latest reservoir levels, please visit our website here

To ensure that we can continue to deliver high quality water to all our customers, it is necessary to introduce this ban now to help reduce demand over the coming months.

Managing our water resources together

We have been working hard to manage our water resources to ensure we have a safe and resilient supply of water for all our customers. Our teams have been out finding and fixing leaks whilst we have also been looking at new water resources – from disused quarries to desalination plants. We know there is still more to be done and we are working hard to do all we can. To find out more about what we’re doing, please find out more here.

We also appreciate your efforts to help Save Every Drop and we continue to offer everyday tips and support to save water at home, across local businesses, and for visitors to Devon and Cornwall. We are also offering free water saving devices – find out more here.  

Thank you,

Laura Flowerdew

Chief Customer and Digital Officer
South West Water

Changes to bin collection dates for upcoming bank holidays

20-04-2023 08:45 AM BST
spring bins

Due to the upcoming bank holidays, North Devon Council is reminding residents to check their bin collection dates by visiting their website.

There will be no waste or recycling collections on Monday 1 May (early May bank holiday) or Monday 8 May (bank holiday for the Coronation of King Charles III). Instead, these collections will be made one day later on Tuesday 2 May or Tuesday 9 May.

All waste and recycling collections in the week commencing Monday 1 May and Monday 8 May will take place one day later that week, running from Tuesday 2 to Saturday 6 May and from Tuesday 9 May to Saturday 13 May and returning to normal on Monday 15 May.

Service Manager for Waste and Recycling, Paul Burton, says: “This year, we have the bonus of an extra bank holiday as part of the celebrations for the King’s Coronation which means we have two bank holidays in a row. To avoid confusion, we are sticking to our usual bank holiday schedule which simply runs one day later than everyone’s usual collection days.

“If you’re in any doubt about your collection dates over the bank holidays, you can check our website at any time.

Residents are being reminded to display their bins, bags and containers at the kerbside by 6am on the day or evening before their collection to avoid being missed.

For information on what goes in your bin, box and bag, residents can visit the council’s helpful webpage.

To stay up-to-date with council news, residents can follow their social media channels and sign up for their email bulletins.

Grants and Community News

14 April 2023

Community Councillor Grants

We have been busy preparing to launch this year’s Community Councillor Grant (CCG) scheme which has been agreed for 2023 to 2027.

…  again giving each of our 42 Councillors £1000 to distribute to local projects!

We hope to launch the fund mid-May so keep checking our website and get your application submitted: Community Councillor Grants (CCG)

Please feel free to give us a call on 01271 388253 to discuss any projects.

The Learning Through Landscapes Trust – deadline 28th April 2023

The Learning Through Landscapes Trust’s Local School Nature Grants programme aims to promote outdoor learning among young children by awarding early years providers and schools in Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales) with a budget of up to £500 for outdoor resources and training.

Please note that they do not provide cash grants. Successful applicants will be expected to purchase products from the Local School Nature Grants product catalogue.

Successful applicants will also be supported by a 2-hour training session. Applicants will be expected to demonstrate how children are actively involved in making decisions about projects that also engage with local communities. Applications that can incorporate these elements into their application are likely to be prioritised for grant support.

Awards can be used to purchase outdoor materials from the Local School Nature Fund catalogue such as bee and insect hotels, bird boxes, gardening tools, outdoor clothing for children and adults, such as wellington boots, and Wildlife watching kits, including outdoor cameras.

Applications must come from early-years groups or schools. Applications from Parent Teacher Associations (PTAs), ‘Friends of’ groups and governors are not eligible.

Further information, guidance and an application form can be found on the Learning Through Landscapes website.  Or email

The next application deadline is Friday 28th April 2023. Further deadlines for 2023 are scheduled for: 9th June, 8th September, and 10th November.

Museum Estate and Development Fund – Arts Council England

This is an open-access capital fund targeted at non-national Accredited museums and local authorities based in England to apply for funding to undertake vital infrastructure and urgent maintenance backlogs which are beyond the scope of day-to-day maintenance budgets.

The grant range is between £50,000 and £5 million. The deadline for expressions of interest is 21 April 2023.

For further details, and to register your expression of interest, visit: Museum Estate and Development Fund – Arts Council England


The Bloss Family Foundation

Grants of up to £1,000, are available to registered charities in Devon that are enabling mentally and/or physically disabled children and young adults enjoy a better quality of life.

Its objectives are to help children and young adults aged 18 and below who are from deprived backgrounds and/or who are mentally and/or physically disabled to enjoy a better quality of life by making grants for providing or paying for items, services or facilities.

Please note that the Foundation does not maintain a website. Further information is, however, available on the Charity Commission website.

Benefact Trust

Benefact Trust’s Building Improvement Grants programme provides essential support to protect and enhance churches and Christian charity buildings, ensuring their continued use, viability, and the safeguarding of their heritage.

The programme is open to applications from churches, cathedrals, denominational bodies and Christian charities.

Under Building Improvement Grants, they are able to support direct capital costs relating to the following types of work:

  • Essential, one-off repairs or other capital works to ensure the continued use or viability of a building (capital work must be considered urgent or necessary within 12 months)
  • Minor capital works or equipment purchases to meet operational or accessibility requirements (e.g. essential operational equipment, AV equipment, hearing loops, ramps, etc)
  • Conservation or restoration of historic features (e.g. stained glass, carvings, interior furnishings, clocks, tower bells, organs etc) which contribute to preservation and appreciation of a building’s heritage
  • Other aesthetic enhancements (e.g. interior decoration, furnishings or public realm improvements) to improve indoor or outdoor spaces for users
  • Energy efficiency/renewable energy measures (e.g. heating/lighting upgrades, solar panels, etc) which improve the sustainability of church buildings/facilities and enable their continued use

All applicants will be expected to have secured funding for at least 30% of their total project costs before making an application.

Full details of how to apply are on the Benefact Trust website.

That bit at the end!…

Plastic-Free North Devon: New Toy Library for Hele Bay Beach

The bespoke hand-built shed, featuring designs by Ilfracombe Junior school children and brought to life by local artist Faye Allison, is the latest toy library to be installed as part of local environmental charity Plastic Free North Devon’s Visitor Campaign.

The aim of the toy libraries is to provide a resource for families to be part of a ‘circular economy’ when it comes to beach toys – rather than families buying buckets, spades, and polystyrene body-boards for their holidays and them being abandoned on our beaches, sent to landfill, or just  sitting unused at the back of cupboards. Families can borrow beach toys for their holiday and then bring them back at the end of their stay, ready for another family to use.

This latest Toy Library is the third installed with funding from the Welcome Back Fund through North Devon Council (fourth in total) benefitting visitors and locals in North Devon beachside locations to protect our coastline.

The toy libraries are just one way that the Visitor Campaign seeks to harness the collective power of local businesses and community to educate and empower visitors to protect and care for the amazing nature right here on our doorstep.

The campaign includes resources and ideas for businesses to use to inspire behavioural change, a newly released  Sustainable Housekeeping Toolkit for cleaners, property managers and business owners, and a discount on the Protect our Playground sustainable wooden belly-boards for all Visitor Campaign sign ups. 

Visit for more information.

North Devon Dogs Bulletin

Dogs in North Devon

dogs in ndevon

Dogs are wonderful for people’s physical health and emotional well-being. We’re lucky to have plenty of beautiful open spaces to enjoy with our four-legged friends here in North Devon, however, while the majority of dog owners are responsible, there is unfortunately an irresponsible minority!  In today’s bulletin, we will be reminding dog owners of their responsibilities…   

Microchipping, collars and lost dogs

chip tag collar


In 1992 it was made a legal requirement that any dog in a public place must wear a collar with the name and address (including postcode) of the owner engraved or written on it, or engraved on a tag. And although there is no legal requirement for a dog to have a collar and tag on private property, every year hundreds of dogs sadly go missing from homes and gardens! In April 2016, it became compulsory for every dog to have an up-to-date microchip.


A microchip is a small electronic chip, around the size of a grain of rice, which is implanted under the dog’s skin and contains a unique number that can be read by a scanner. The dog owner’s contact details relating to each number are logged on a central database, so should the dog ever go missing or be stolen it can be scanned by the authorities and returned to his owner swiftly and safely. Dogs over eight weeks old must be microchipped and the details must be kept up to date. You can be fined up to £500 if your dog isn’t microchipped. Unfortunately microchips sometimes fail so it’s a good idea to ask your vet, during your pets annual checkups, if the chip is still in working order. Watch our video to find out more.

Lost dogs

If you have lost your dog, please phone us (during office hours on 01271 388870, or on 01271 388240 out of hours) – to see if the dog has been picked up by our dog warden. We post pictures of lost dogs on our Facebook page, so it’s worth checking there too. Please be aware, that once we have found the owner of a dog, the owner may be liable for fines, fees and charges – including:  statutory fine – £25 administration charge – £6 plus VAT boarding (for each period of 24 hours or part there of) – £20 any required veterinary costs, for example if the dog is injured other relevant fee Please do the responsible thing and make sure you dog is microchipped and has a collar to avoid these fees. It will also make our lives easier when trying to reunite them with you!

To report a stray or lost dog to us, please visit our website. More information on microchipping, stray and lost dogs.  

Dog fouling and dog bins

dog poop bag

As an authority, we recognise that the vast majority of dog owners are responsible and respectful to their local community. However, we do receive regular complaints from residents about dog fouling and the behaviour of some dogs, and we we are obliged to act upon these complaints. If you are in charge of a dog, whether you are the owner or not, you must by law clean up after the dog has fouled in any public access area. This includes car parks, grass verges, recreation and sports grounds, parks, river walks, pavements and footpaths, gutters and carriageways, beaches. Failure to do so can result in a fixed penalty of £80 or a maximum fine of £1,000. Call it out, call it in, clear it up Help us tackle dog fouling by following these three simple steps: Call it out – If you see someone fail to pick up after their dog, call them up on it. Do it politely, perhaps by offering them a spare bag. Don’t put yourself at risk. Call it in – Report dog fouling to us online or give us a call on 01271 388870. It can help us catch and prosecute the culprits and also builds up a picture of where the problem areas are, so we know where to patrol. Report a dog fouling incident Clear it up – If you aren’t willing or able to call it out or call it in, if you have a spare poo bag then helping to remove the problem is a really positive contribution, no one will step in it and it keeps standards high, which helps prevent further dog fouling.

  dog poop bin

Dog bins Although we as a council don’t have a statutory duty to provide dog litter bins or empty them, we do offer a number of dog bins across North Devon. These are emptied on a regular basis. If you’re looking for one, please visit our website: Find dog litter bins    Did you know, as well as using dog poop bins, you can also use any public litter bin to dispose of your dogs waste? Help keep North Devon clean and tidy when out walking your canine companion! More information on dog fouling and bins

Dogs controls

dog on leads

Whilst the majority of dog owners are responsible, unfortunately a minority still fail to pick up dog waste and allow their pets to run out of control. Please see our ‘Dogs Public Space Protection Order’ page for full details. The order contains a number of measures to enable us to address this irresponsible behaviour – including requirements for: owners to pick up after their dog owners to place any out of control dog on a lead if requested dogs to be on a lead in a public cemetery dogs not to be present on any formal sports pitch or enclosed children’s play area between 1 October and 31 March, dogs not to be present on or near land used as a High Tide Roosting Sites for overwintering birds between 1 May and 30 September, dogs not to be present on Croyde or Combe Martin beaches dogs to be on a lead in certain locations in Braunton Burrows at certain times of year Dog owners who do not adhere to these controls could attract a Fixed Penalty Notice of £100, or prosecution. Watch our video of one of our Neighbourhood Officers talk about the dogs PSPO. More information on dog controls  

Let’s make a difference together!
Neighbourhood Officers

Don’t forget the power of our local communities! We currently work with partners and community groups to combat issues in targeted areas. If you would like to get involved and keep North Devon beautiful, we welcome any approach for collaboration. Follow us on Twitter @NDCWardens and Facebook @northdevoncouncil and share our posts to help spread the word. Don’t forget, if you see us out and about, feel free to come and say hello.

Thanks for taking the time to read this bulletin, we hope you found it interesting. If you’re looking for more information dogs in North Devon, please don’t hesitate to visit our website. 

Do the Green Thing for the King!

06-04-2023 02:31 PM BST
Green coronation

Recognising the King’s and the Royal Family’s support for the environment and green causes, North Devon and Torridge Councils have teamed up with local charity Plastic Free North Devon to produce some ‘top tips’ to help event organisers ensure a celebration that doesn’t damage the earth. Suitable for any size of gathering, from afternoon tea with the neighbours to a party for the whole community, the tips offer a handy guide to reducing and eliminating single-use plastic, preventing litter, increasing recycling, and supporting local shops.

The tips are aimed at jogging people’s memory into thinking about such things as how they might collect any food waste or providing recycle collection points at an event and how the disposal of any materials collected might be handled. Purchasing drinks in cans as opposed to plastic, or getting people to bring their own cups, and using alternatives to plastic straws are further examples of easy ways to help the environment without affecting people’s fun and enjoyment.

CEO of Plastic Free North Devon, Claire Moodie, says: “We know that people in North Devon are concerned about their local environment, and keen to take action to protect it and the planet. These top tips offer a simple way to host a celebration for the King and keep it green with just a little preparation and planning. We’re delighted to be working again with North Devon and Torridge Councils to help residents and businesses be more sustainable.”

Sustainability and Climate Officer at North Devon and Torridge Councils, Donna Sibley, says“Both North Devon and Torridge Councils are justifiably proud of our recycling rates through our kerbside collection schemes, and work with residents to keep black bin waste as low as possible. We’re hoping our communities will rise to the challenge of making different choices and showing the rest of the country what a green Coronation looks like. The tips will help people with ideas on how they can cut the amount of plastic and general waste that might otherwise be generated and suggest ways of managing and promoting recycling.”

The tips to help you reduce plastic waste at your event along with a list of organised events can be found at and
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