Support Saputo (Dairy) Ltd to honour and enforce their own Code of Ethics, their own corporate values, their own code of good governance and their own excellence in social responsibility. In turn, TCDS can then honour the 2016 referendum, when 86% of the town voted for a mixed use community led development to bring the old Dairy Crest Site back to life, for the town, forever.
Sure, we know Saputo UK aren't the owners any more, but the way we see it, Saputo UK and Saputo Inc have got one big reputation to protect and the muscle to put this right. And if they've clocked anything about Totnes at all, they'll appreciate our collective stamina for the long haul.
The 'how' isn't set in stone yet. There are many possible routes for the site to come back in to community ownership. The obvious one is a Compulsory Purchase Order (which would need to be enacted by South Hams District Council (SHDC)). A more expedient way forwards is for Saputo Inc to act according to their own values and intervene now to put this right. There are other ways forward too which Totnes Community Development Society are currently exploring.
A Compulsory Purchase of the Atmos Totnes site, for the community of Totnes, is one route to getting the made Community Right to Build Order, as enshrined in the Joint Local Plan, moving again. Compulsory purchase powers may be used by the local authority (in this case SHDC) where any development that is demonstrably of great benefit to the wider community is being blocked by land ownership, which clearly the case here.
Atmos Totnes is a pioneering inspiring and desperately-needed example of what community-led development looks like. As we emerge from COVID, we need inspiring initiatives like this more than ever. And so I urge South Hams District Council to do absolutely everything within their power to ensure Atmos happens.
And indeed I call on the government, which created the localism agenda for communities, of which this is the shining light, to do everything within their power to ensure that Atmos is able to be realised. Atmos is the future, it’s what we need to bind communities and give them hope. Let’s make this happen."