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Better Lives For All - Help Shape A Strategy For South Hams

Better Lives for All is the rallying call from South Hams District Council as the first steps are taken towards developing a new long-term strategy for the District. From supporting businesses to thrive to helping communities stay strong, it's now time for you to share how you see South Hams as a place to live, work, and play and what you hope for in the future.

SH Corporate Strategy 2021 cover

Put forward in response to the newly evolving challenges and opportunities of the post-pandemic landscape, the draft strategy sets out the direction and a timeline. This includes the steps being taken to ensure as many people as possible share their ideas and suggestions. This will mean the views of residents, local business and visitors are included when priorities for action are agreed later this year.

The report on the planned corporate strategy was discussed at the Council's Executive Committee meeting today, Thursday 8 July 2021. Now, Full Council will consider it on 15 July. If agreed, the public will be invited to share their thoughts on what is needed to make the South Hams a better place to live, work and visit through a consultation starting on July 19, 2021 and running for six weeks.  You can take a sneak peek at how the strategy is shaping-up so far here.

How to have your say
From 19 July 2021, you can fill in our survey

If you can't wait for the consultation to start and you would like to get involved in shaping the context for the final strategy you can help us right now.

We want to know how you see South Hams as a place to live, work and play. Help us to paint a picture of the South Hams you know.

The strategy will drive the South Hams firmly forward in response to global and local issues. It will ensure that Council resources are used efficiently and effectively to deliver the priorities identified by Members and through the wider public consultation.

It has been developed so far using feedback from all Council Members. This means that from the outset the focus has been on the individual needs of communities across the South Hams, from coastal towns to rural hamlets.

Looking to take every opportunity to support businesses and local people, the strategy outlines six core focus areas that will underpin the Council's work over the next 20 years. These are:

  • Adapting and mitigating climate change and increasing biodiversity
  • Improving homes
  • Protecting, conserving and enhancing our built and natural environment
  • Stimulating a thriving economy
  • Strengthening community wellbeing
  • Delivering quality Council services

As well as articulating the Council's vision and ambitions for the longer-term, the new strategy contains specific, measurable and time bound targets covering the short-term (next three years). 

Cllr Judy Pearce, Leader of South Hams District Council, said: "There is no denying that South Hams is an incredibly special place. At the forefront of our planning for the future is ensuring the wellbeing and prosperity of residents. We will ensure we stimulate a resilient and diverse economy, and protect the built and natural environment.

Underpinning our vision, we must ensure that we deliver quality Council services that are responsive to the needs of South Hams, its residents and businesses.

"We have a broad basis for this strategy. We have already pushed ahead to develop a Housing Strategy and Climate and Biodiversity Strategy - both supported by detailed action plans. The COVID-19 pandemic may have held us up but our ambition is not dimmed. We will deliver with renewed vigour over the next few years, achieving improvement and opportunity for the lives of our residents.

"The next step is arguably the most important. We need to reach out to as many different people as possible to consolidate our understanding of the hopes and concerns of residents, businesses and visitors. Please do take part in our survey, enter our photo competition and tell us what you think about the South Hams where you live, work and play - your input is crucial to the success of our work and will give us the foundation blocks we need to deliver our vision of Better Lives for All." 

The strategy follows a very busy year for the Council, which adapted rapidly to deliver vital lifelines to local communities. This includes:

  • Injecting £71.7 million of government business grants into the local economy
  • Approving £multi-million schemes to boost economic strength in Salcombe and Ivybridge
  • £124,000 of funding has gone to community groups to help them deliver a wide range of projects to improve the wellbeing of local people, including new sports facilities
  • Homes across the District were also improved. 500 homes were supported to access energy efficiency improvements. This included grants for 31 of the least energy efficient properties to install central heating for the first time.
  • 127 residents have been able to live more safely in their homes thanks to adaptations to the property to meet their needs.

To see the report and draft strategy, please go to:

Enter our photo competition - show us the South Hams you see:

Tell us what you think about the South Hams as a place to live, work and visit:


Issued 8 July 2021

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