Housing Minister tours Cranbrook

Housing Minister, Kris Hopkins visited Cranbrook in East Devon on Thursday (19 June 2014) to see progress on the second crucial phase at the brand new community, which was the first project in the country to benefit from the Government’s Local Infrastructure Funding.

Cranbrook is one of the largest housing and employment developments in the country and is set to be Devon’s first free-standing new community since the Middle Ages. Already well underway, the development will create 6,000 new homes, schools, social and community buildings, sports facilities and retail provision, a country park and a railway station. 

The Government invested £20m from the Local Infrastructure Fund for phase 2 of the development, to fund an education campus and the infrastructure to create the new town centre. The funding will help maintain the rate of house-building at 500 homes a year, playing an essential part in accelerating major growth in the area which is estimated to be worth around £1bn to the local economy in terms of the value and jobs it will create.  

As part of his visit, Kris Hopkins first met and discussed progress with the key partners including representatives from the local councils, housing associations, developers, the head teacher of St Martin’s Primary School and those involved in community development in Cranbrook. 

Following a tour of St Martin’s Primary School and Nursery which currently has 276 pupils and the rest of Younghayes (Cranbrook Phase 1), which now has over 700 occupied homes; he then met construction workers and local apprentices on the site of the education campus as part of the second phase, hearing first hand how they had benefitted from the development. 

The education campus will provide 420 primary school places with early years provision and up to 1,000 secondary places within one development and will be complete in September 2015.  Phase two will see a further 2,380 homes being built.

Kris Hopkins with Cranbrook Partners on site at Cranbrook's Education Campus - taken by GRW Photography

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Housing Minister Kris Hopkins said: “It’s great to see new and exciting developments such as Cranbrook where a whole new community is being developed in a rural area which has benefitted from Government support to get them moving or keep them going in a challenging economic climate.

At Cranbrook it’s clear from seeing progress here today and meeting people that the Government investment has proved invaluable and helped provide jobs for local people with around 225 people already having been employed on this site already as a result of the development, and more are expected as it gathers pace and more homes are built here.” 

Cllr Andrew Moulding, Deputy Leader, East Devon District Council added: “The Minister was very impressed with the progress we have made at Cranbrook and congratulated us on how all the parties involved are working together to make our new community a success. He was particularly taken by the speed at which homes are being built for local people and the quality of the current and future education provision. He even found time for a few overs with the after-school cricket club!”

Local Infrastructure Funding was launched in 2012 to support large-scale sites with crucial funding to support housing growth.

ENDS

Issued by EEDGP: 23 June 2014