Cranbrook must wait ‘at least’ six months for its official boundary to be drawn up while new East Devon homes are identified

New homes yet to be built in East Devon are the reason why Cranbrook residents will have to wait until at least spring 2022 until the town’s boundary can be made official.

East Devon District Council (EDDC) said it will not define the Cranbrook parish boundary for at least six months until an inspector has signed off a plan outlining the town’s upcoming developments.

Cranbrook Town Council has been told by EDDC to reidentify the areas of surrounding countryside to be included as part of the town once a review of future homes has been rubber stamped.

EDDC councillors, at a cabinet meeting held on November 3, voted for a boundary review to be shelved until the Cranbrook Plan has been signed off.

Concerns raised included how development expansion across boundaries could leave neighbouring homes becoming split into different parishes.

An EDDC spokesperson said: “The Cranbrook Plan, which looks to define the future expansion areas for the town, is currently being looked at by a government inspector and a report back is currently awaited.

“Current indications are that this report will be received around the end of the year.

“The cabinet papers mentioned how when communities expand some new homes can end up being built across boundaries, meaning some neighbours are in different parishes from one another.

“When this happens, councils are advised to consider undertaking a community governance review – this is assuming that all the houses have been built – or at least have permission- and that there is a degree of certainty and permanence in terms of development on the ground.

“For this reason, councillors voted for the boundary review to be discontinued and invited Cranbrook Town Council to reapply for it at a later date, after the Cranbrook Plan has been signed off.”

EDDC said a decision on where the Cranbrook parish boundary will have to wait ‘at least six months’ until the plan outlining the town’s next developments has been signed off by an inspector.

“A petition was put forward by Cranbrook Town Council requesting that East Devon District Council cabinet conduct a community governance review, defining what areas of the surrounding countryside will become part of the new town,” EDDC said.

“The matter was discussed at the latest EDDC cabinet meeting on Wednesday, 3 November following consultation with all affected parishes and with consideration of the current status of the Cranbrook Plan.”

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