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In December 2014 and January 2015 we asked residents of Cranbrook to fill in a questionnaire to help shape the economy of the town they live in.

The questionnaire asked about the type of shops, leisure and employment opportunities, businesses, business support and community run activities that residents felt should be available in the town.

We want to develop Cranbrook into an outstanding modern enterprise town where businesses of all shapes and sizes can flourish. But first we needed the people in Cranbrook to say what sort of town they want. We were keen to actively involve them in the decision making process and to give them the opportunity to make things happen.

Summary of results

109 residents completed the questionnaire.

The most important things, out of those they were asked about, for the people of Cranbrook were (most important first):

  1. Good quality parks, open spaces and play areas in Cranbrook.
  2. Good local services. For example youth clubs, playgroups, doctors.
  3. Good quality surrounding landscape.
  4. Good public transport.
  5. Easy access to Exeter and other towns. When asked for other things they felt were important the most common request was for a swimming pool.

The least important things, out of those they were asked about, for the people of Cranbrook were (least important first):

  1. Access to local arts and cultural venues.
  2. Employment opportunities in Cranbrook.
  3. Employment opportunities outside of Cranbrook but nearby.
  4. Outdoor activities in the town

The most important shopping and leisure facilities, out of those they were asked about, for the people of Cranbrook were (most important first):

  1. Locally owned / independent smaller shops selling everyday items, for example, bakers, grocers, butchers.
  2. Sports and leisure centre
  3. Locally owned / independent cafes and restaurants.
  4. Locally owned / independent pubs and bars.
  5. Major supermarket.

The least important shopping and leisure facilities, out of those they were asked about, for the people of Cranbrook were (least important first):

  1. Charity shops.
  2. Late night music venue.
  3. Major national retailers, for example Next, Currys.
  4. Cinema

When asked if they would be willing to be involved in listed community activities:

  • 39% would like to be involved in the community managing public spaces in the town, 19% of those would be willing to be involved actively.
  • 26% would like to be involved in community run allotments, 16% of those would be willing to be actively involved.
  • 32% would be willing to be involved in community run orchards, 15% of those would like to be actively involved.
  • 27% would like to be involved in the community owning land, 14% of those would be willing to be actively involved.
  • 31% would be willing to be involved in the community providing other services, 11% of those would like to be actively involved.
  • 25% would like to be involved in the community managing public buildings, 9% of those actively.
  • 17% would like to be involved in running a community cafe, 7% of those actively.
  • 10% would be willing to be involved in a community run pub or bar, 6% of those actively.
  • 17% would like to be involved in a community run food shop, 5% of those actively.
  • 14% would be willing to be involved in a community run kitchen, only 2% of those actively.

The most important things, out of the five things they were asked about, to encourage local businesses and community enterprises to provide local services were (most important first):

  1. Establishing a community garden and orchards, 57% felt it was important or very important.
  2. Setting up a time bank to encourage volunteering, 49% felt it was important or very important.

What's happening with the results

The results are being used to help write an Economic Development Strategy for the town. Cranbrook residents had an opportunity to go along to an event at the school in early February to have a look at what the strategy was proposing so far and give their comments.