The biggest impact since Brunel!
When writing an article for the Uplyme Parish Magazine, it is often hard to ensure that what is topical at the time of writing is still relevant at the time fellow Uplyme residents actually read it. For the double summer edition, the task is much harder, so I have chosen two major subjects which will shape our future over the next decade and beyond!
July Trinity Matters featured a major victory for the joint Devon and Somerset Broadband bid to BDUK (the government’s body for broadband funding), with an initial award of £30Million towards the delivery of superfast broadband to the two counties. A further £22Million will be added by local Councils, with the lion’s share from Devon County Council and Somerset County Council. The expectation is that this will be matched by private sector funds to give an implementation budget expected to be just over £100Million!
This will probably be the most significant investment in the two counties since Brunel brought rail travel to the area, with an economic impact much exceeding that of the rail network, up to 50,000 new jobs and a £750Million boost to the local economy – yet in this case the infrastructure of buried cables and small transmitters will be almost invisible to the eye.
Over in the East of the East Devon District another, much more visible development has also started….
A New Town for East Devon…
After ten years of planning, the first turf has been cut at Cranbrook, a new town just off the old A30 road near Rockbeare, east of Exeter in East Devon.
What does this mean for Trinity?
Cranbrook will join us as part of an East Devon which currently has approximately 65,000 households, of which around 1,000 are in Trinity (Census 2001). Cranbrook is the first new ‘free standing’ settlement in Devon since the Middle Ages, likely to grow to 6,500 houses by 2026 and which already has outline Planning Permission for 2,900 houses. The first phase of 1,120 houses has just started construction.
The effect on the profile of East Devon is obvious, with a likely increase of approaching 10% in house numbers, over six times the number of houses in the whole of Trinity. But what is special about Cranbrook?
Cranbrook is to be a self-sufficient, low carbon community near to the employment opportunities of Exeter and, as part of the Exeter and East Devon Growth Point. It will include 300 ‘affordable’ homes in the first phase of development together with a new primary school and a full spectrum of services to serve the new community.
Unlike other Devon towns which have evolved over centuries, Cranbrook will be built in a relatively short time. This means that residents at Cranbrook, and businesses on the planned neighbouring Skypark Business Park, will be served by an Energy Centre supplying them with both heat and hot water. This will be run using biomass fuel in the future. The £25 million Energy Centre, which will be run by energy company E.ON, is the first of this scale in the UK.
It is estimated that the biomass Combined Heat and Power (CHP), which will also generate electricity for the national grid, will provide an estimated 10,000 tonnes of CO2 saving per year, for the first 2,900 homes at Cranbrook. In addition residents will benefit from reduced energy bills, unlimited hot water, no boiler to maintain and no hot water cylinder.
When this is achieved, Cranbrook will be the first mass open market development in the country to provide a district heating scheme on this scale.
Other planned major developments in the West of our East Devon District, around the airport, include a Flybe Training Academy (already open), Skypark Business Park – a 107 acre site expected to provide up to 7,500 jobs, and Exeter Science Park which will build on the links with Exeter University and the Met Office. An Intermodal Rail Freight Facility and Distribution Centre will sit astride the Exeter to Waterloo railway line to provide large scale logistics facilities, and allow transfer of goods between air, rail and road transport modes.
The developments in this area are innovative, exciting and substantial. They will have a fundamental effect on the economy of the whole of East Devon and through this on Trinity. Projects are integrated within the Exeter and East Devon Growth Point. If you want to learn more, see their website at www.exeterandeastdevon.gov.uk
The LDF is back…
After the May Elections, the Local Development Framework (LDF) Panel is back. There will be a further opportunity to take part in shaping the future of our beautiful Ward, and the process is now much more open.
The LDF Panel is an advisory body which reports to the Development Management Committee. Meetings are now open to the public and press. It is expected to present to the DMC in September 2011, with and further Public Consultation is November 2011.
Meetings are scheduled for 2nd, 16th & 30th August and 6th & 13th September – see the EDDC website for details.
Further information on most subjects discussed here is on www.trinitymatters.co.uk
Have a great summer!
Cllr Ian Thomas – Trinity Ward, East Devon District Council
The beautiful coastal parishes of Uplyme, Combpyne-Rousdon and Axmouth.