Torquay palm tree arrives... but is it a waste of money?
A £7,000 palm tree arrived in Torquay under the cover of darkness on Monday night.
Torbay mayor Gordon Oliver and Cllr Robert Excell were on hand to see the controversial addition to the English Riviera winched into place.
It will stay on the roundabout at Kerswell Gardens for the next three years until the bypass is in place.
On the streets of Torbay, the general consensus was the palm tree is a waste of money.
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Thomas Bannerman, 76, from Chelston, Torquay, said: "I don't approve of it. I think it is a waste of money especially as it is only for three years.
"There must be something else they can spend their money."
Pat and Bill Cormack, from Exeter, said: "What a waste of money. Besides, if you want to put a palm tree there, what's wrong with a Torbay Palm?
"They could be spending that money on education, sport or have a nice sculpture instead which would be a long lasting statement and is more specific to the Bay."
Caroline Watson, who lives on a yacht in Dartmouth, said: "It's fine. I just question whether it is worth £7,000.
"It's a bit of fun and holidaymakers like that kind of thing. They will remember it and come back to see it."
Chris Wylie, 59, from Kingskerswell, said: "Why have a palm tree there if it is going to be ripped up in three years time when the bypass is complete?
"Why not wait three more years and put in something more permanent? Surely it would have saved them money.
"I don't think it was the right time to spend money on something like this. The economy is not right, When they put up council tax next year we will ask them why they decided to spend our money on a palm tree."
Readers of our website are not convinced about the value of the palm tree.
So far, 69 per cent of those voting say it is a waste of money and there are better ways to spend the cash.
The other 31 per cent say it is perfectly reasonable, and a way of making the place look more welcoming.
You can cast your vote at www.thisissouthdevon.co.uk/polls