Construction of the new Cranbrook town centre is due to start on Tuesday 30th August.
The consortium of developers, Henry Davidson, Hallam Land Management, Taylor Wimpey and Persimmon will start work on a supermarket, high street shops with homes above, a town square and a children’s day nursery.
This major milestone will ultimately provide a town centre that will serve the population of up to 20,000 people and other communities nearby. Completion for the supermarket and children’s day nursery is due next year and high street shops with apartments above are due to be completed in 2024. There will be a fit-out period for the supermarket which will then enable it to open.
Separately, East Devon District Council is in the process of acquiring 4 acres of land to ensure that the town centre can accommodate the types of community facilities that the population will need in the future, such as a health and wellbeing hub (including a GP surgery) and leisure centre. Devon County Council is also continuing to work on their new community building combining a library, children and youth centres.
Further aspects of the town centre will include a new town hall, extra care housing and a skate park. Altogether the committed and further planned development will help deliver a vibrant town centre for Cranbrook.
Cllr Paul Arnott, East Devon District Council’s Leader, Portfolio Holder for Strategic Development and Chair of Cranbrook Strategic Delivery Board, welcomed this long-awaited outcome:
The people of Cranbrook have been incredibly patient and we’re delighted to learn that the town centre will actually start to become a reality.
Cllrs Kevin Blakey, Kim Bloxham and Sam Hawkins, East Devon District Council ward members representing Cranbrook, said:
The three Cranbrook ward members are naturally delighted that the construction work on the town centre is getting under way. As we have said previously, a great many people have worked long and hard to draw together all the many threads to the legal agreements that are now complete, and our thanks go to them all. We can now look forward to the land being a hive of activity as the physical creation of our much anticipated town centre takes shape. This is a big moment in the story of Cranbrook!
Cllr Rufus Gilbert, Devon County Council’s Cabinet Member for Economic Recovery and Skills, said:
We've now reached the exciting stage where we'll start to see the development of the town centre taking shape. I'm delighted, we're all delighted!
Cranbrook is growing, and I'm in no doubt that it'll become one of Devon's most important towns.
It's through the partnership we've seen between councils, developers and community representatives, but the real success for this incredible new town is thanks to its local residents.
Cllr Les Bayliss, Chairman of Cranbrook Town Council, said:
Following considerable time and discussions, at last work is to begin on developing the town centre. The community’s aspirations are beginning to be realised with the start of the Morrison supermarket. It is a long awaited milestone in the development of Cranbrook.
Scott Davidson, Managing Director of Henry Davidson, said:
We are delighted to be delivering the much needed town centre for the residents of Cranbrook. This has been an extremely challenging project and thanks to the efforts of all the stakeholders and the Henry Davidson team, we are very pleased and excited that construction works are now about to commence.
A spokesperson for the Cranbrook Consortium of developers, said:
We are very excited to see work starting on Cranbrook town centre. There will be plenty to offer for our residents and we can’t wait to see the new community making use of these fantastic facilities.
We have put a lot of time and care into building this new town and ensuring we have the right amenities in place for everyone to use and enjoy. Residents have been very patient and we’re confident that the town centre will be well worth the wait.