Come to Pilton Park consultation events this week

Posted on: 24 July 2017

Residents in Pilton and the Yeo Vale area of Barnstaple are being encouraged to attend a two day consultation at their local park this week.

North Devon Council would like the local community to help form a master plan to transform Pilton Park, as part of a project to improve flood protection at neighbouring properties. Council officers and LDA Design, who also designed the Olympic Park in London, will be presenting their ideas at the consultation events in the park on Friday 28 and Saturday 29 July between 10am-4pm. They would like as much input from the local community as possible and welcome all those with an interest in Pilton Park to attend.

Pilton Park is currently a flood plain, but a proposed flood defence scheme would see the River Yeo redirected alongside Pilton Causeway in order to reduce flood risk in the Pilton and Pottington areas. Redirecting the river would also provide a unique opportunity to remodel and enhance the park; plans which could include a cafe and toilets, new childrens’ play area, zones for older children and a terraced area ideal for events.

Executive Member for Parks, Leisure and Culture, Councillor Dick Jones, says: “We want to try and protect the area from future flood risk and, taking advice from our partners, the Environment Agency and Devon County Council, diverting the River Yeo is the recommended option. Obviously we want to involve the local community in any changes we propose, so these consultation events will be the first step in that consultation process. Re-routing the river will give us the opportunity to make some very exciting changes and we really want local residents and park users to be at the heart of the plans for their park. Please come and see us at Pilton Park next week, or go online and have your say.”

Executive Member for Environment, Councillor Rodney Cann, says: “The diversion of the river at Pilton Park is an integral part of the flood defence proposals for Barnstaple, which are designed to protect residential and commercial properties from future flooding. Consultation with local people will be central to these proposals, so please get involved in the events next week.”

Local ward members for Pilton Cllrs Brian Greenslade and Mair Manuel say: “It is important that as many residents as possible attend and in particular probe the effect of these proposals to divert the River Yeo through Pilton Park to ensure that flood alleviation provided by the existing arrangements is not detrimentally affected.”

If you are unable to attend the consultation events but would still like to give feedback on the plans and offer your ideas on the future design of the park, you can comment online at

7 comments on “Come to Pilton Park consultation events this week

  1. Helen Chugg says:

    The historical bow of the river provided mooring for wooden ships in the past, it’s context in the aspect of use in the dock area for the Armada would be lost.
    The river provides a natural slowing down if the tidal flow, preventing surge back.
    Any change to the river direction would increase the volume and speed of the water and would cause faster bank erosion.
    The function of ox bow curves is to allow the water to disperse and dispense silt and gravel .
    If any work should be done, it is on deepening this channel to make this system more efficient.
    The closure of the carting track on pottington us proof that we do not need this kind of leisure facility.

  2. Susan McMurray says:

    I have to agree with everything Endymion Beer says – less is definitely more here as it is not a large space, even with the reclaimed land from the river diversion. I don’t think we should be trying to do something for every possible group of potential users here, the park is and should remain a peaceful green space where people can relax, walk their dogs and enjoy a safe place for their children to play. I particularly dislike the skate/BMX part which I think would clash with dog walkers and younger children and the performance area, which would present a noisy and unwelcome disruption to the peaceful natural wildlife areas and to residents like me who live close by. I applaud the creation of more natural ‘wild’ areas and more diverse planting, although we shouldn’t be tearing down all the current wildlife resources to replace them with different ones. I hope there will be plenty of consultation with conservation groups on this. I am a member of the RSPB and Bumblebee Conservation Trust, both of which can provide plenty of advice to local authorities on good management and creation of better green spaces.
    I attended the consultation in the park and saw all the proposals. I am still wondering how diverting the river can help the flooding situation as surely there will be less of a space for a large volume of water to go meaning the new channel will flow more quickly, unless it’s high tide of course! I assume this is part of a much wider flood defense proposal.
    Lastly, the black cat statue tribute to Trevor Beer is a lovely idea.

    • Mair says:

      Thanks for your comments. I will forward these on to the team carrying out the consultation. Kind regards.

  3. Endymion Beer says:

    I can understand the concern about flooding, the risk of which is likely to increase owing to climate change. However, I am also concerned that the park is adjacent to a very busy road. I like the safety of the enclosed play area that we have at present, within the boundaries of the park, for children – I’m not sure about boy racers and BMX biking in this particular area – I don’t think it is safe.

    I think it is important to retain a traditional park, where adults can enjoy a green space, for well-being and enjoyment peacefully as it is already – it isn’t that large a park.Less is more. If the family agree – what about a black cat statue in memory of Trevor Beer MBE 1937-2017 local author, artist and expert on British Big Cats and a nature theme in the planting and trees. It’s an important area, there should be nature information boards – as Youth Officer for the British Naturalists Association, I don’t mind helping, I’m a professional illustrator. Can you advise me on the memorial idea – how to put it forward for consideration. I haven’t costed it, we may be able to raise funds.

    • Mair says:

      Thank you very much for your comments and suggestions. I will put these forward to the team organising the consultation and ask them to get in touch with you. If you are able to make it to the park either today (28 July) or tomorrow (29 July), the consultation team is in the park from 10am-4pm and they would be happy to talk to you. Kind regards.

  4. Will Austin says:

    Hi, when will the online consultation be available? I couldn’t see it at the page linked to from your news article.

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Posted in: Community | Environment | Leisure | Planning