MP Simon Jupp responds to concerns over Sidmouth business closures

Struggling Sidmouth businesses are being urged to contact the East Devon MP.

We now know, thanks to certain secret diaries, that our previous MP, Sir Hugo Swire, was bosom pals with “Dave” (Cameron) and had ready access to the PM’s private phone – yet Owl cannot think of anything that Hugo did for East Devon. 

We also now know that the character Sasha Swire calls “Jumping Jupp Flash” who succeeded him, spent a large part of Tuesday in ear- bending distance of Bojo. Yet all he is promising to do is “to stay in touch” with Sidmouth businesses. Everyone in Sidmouth happy with that? – Owl  

Beth Sharp

Simon Jupp said he is doing all he can to stay in touch with the town’s businesses and asked residents in the town to continue to support Sidmouth, by shopping locally.

It comes after Sidmouth resident Dennis Barrington, 77, raised concerns over the number of businesses closing down on the town’s high street.

Speaking to the Herald, Mr Barrington said: “I was brought up in Sidmouth and have spent most of my life in Sidmouth and am most concerned about what is happening to this lovely little town.

“Something drastic needs to be done to stop the businesses closing down.

“Sidmouth used to be the most prosperous town in East Devon, nobody ever had to go to Exeter for anything because you could get it here.

“A cut in business rates is most essential, we have a newly elected MP, most people don’t know his name.

“He is the one that should be doing something about this…

“We now need incentives and something to kickstart the Sidmouth economy.

“I feel very sorry for young people, they have to have a future. I’ve argued until I’m blue in the face about online shopping.

“I’m most against these big online companies are ruining the high street, if we keep going like this, we will kill all our local trade.

“Sidmouth is becoming a cultural desert which will be tragic – we have some marvellous businesses, shops and people. If we don’t wake up now it will be too late.”

Mr Jupp said: “As a fellow Sidmouth resident, we all want to ensure our fantastic shops and high street get through the pandemic.

“The Government scrapped business rates for shops back in March and responded with extra funding to concerns I raised about access to business grants which helped open up support to more businesses across East Devon.

“I’ve held regular discussions with Sidmouth Chamber of Commerce and Sidmouth Town Council who are brilliant advocates for our town and I regularly visit local businesses too.

“I’d urge businesses who are struggling to get in touch with me and I’ll continue to raise their concerns directly with the government.

“Crucially, we must all play our part and continue to support our local shops to help secure jobs and protect our high streets.”