Building work has begun on the new state-of-the-art seafront Sideshore centre, putting Exmouth into the global lead as a top destination for watersports.
Developer Grenadier Estates said it had appointed Clyst St Mary-based firm Devon Contractors to build the Exmouth Watersports Centre, on Queen’s Drive, a community hub where visitors can learn to paddleboard, kitesurf, power kite, and sea swim, or relax and eat at Michael Caines’s new restaurant and café.
Grenadier Estates said Sideshore would be a high-quality, sustainable, building ‘that will help distinguish Exmouth as a leading watersports destination on the national and international stage’.
Aiden Johnson-Hugill, Grenadier director, said: “Grenadier are delighted to be commencing works on the new sustainable beachfront development, Sideshore.
“This project has always been about providing a place for the community and visitors to be able to learn a new sport, take part in fun activities that support wellbeing, and of course provide a relaxed place to sit, eat and drink the local produce on offer.
“Supporting local communities is important to Grenadier, and this project is no different.
“We are very happy to announce that Devon Contractors will be undertaking the construction of Sideshore, and we trust they will deliver a high-quality, sustainable building that will help distinguish Exmouth as a leading watersports destination on the national and international stage.”
The Queen’s Drive build is expected to be finished by summer 2020; it will include green space to hold events, a new ramp for easy beach access, and an ‘innovative’ building of new technologies and renewable energy sources.
Grenadier Estates said it aimed to build a Watersports Centre with a ‘distinctive’ architectural design and a small carbon footprint.
Michelin-star chef Michael Caines last year confirmed he will open a restaurant and café as part of the new development; Edge Watersports owners, Eric and Steph Bridge will run the Watersports Centre.
When finished, the centre will include a restaurant, public parking, communal space and a new ramp giving direct access to the beach.
Simon Lawrence, contract manager at Devon Contractors, said: “Grenadier approached us to work on the construction for Sideshore as they were keen to work with a local company and one they felt would do this project justice.
“We are very excited to start on site in July and deliver an exciting new centre for the community next summer.”
Leader of East Devon District Council, Councillor Ben Ingham, said the council welcomed the start of construction.
He said Sideshore would ‘significantly enhance’ Exmouth’s increasing reputation for watersports excellence.
He said: “There are so many attractions that Exmouth now offers to all sections of our community and visitors, confirming its place as a top West Country tourist destination.”