Saturday, 20 July 2013

Knowle plans: mileage

There have been differing accounts as to how travel-distances would be affected by relocating the District Council's HQ to Honiton (or Cranbrook).

When promoting the move from Sidmouth to Honiton, East Devon District Council (EDDC) argues that Sidmouth is inconvenient for many people in East Devon while Honiton is much more central. Let me explode that myth. We are also told that moving will save on energy costs. What will that mean in financial terms and when will the savings repay the investment?
The District’s populations are clustered around the coast. I looked at the numbers of people living in each East Devon ward and calculated the distance and travel time from each ward to Sidmouth or Honiton (using a TomTom SatNav to give shortest route and time for that route). On average, an East Devon resident might travel 9 miles to Sidmouth or 11.1 miles to Honiton. So an EDDC move to Honiton would add 19% to the typical journey. The time taken for travel averages 26.5 minutes to Sidmouth or 29.6 minutes to Honiton – a 10% increase if EDDC moves.
Exploding some myths re. Knowle relocation. | Save Our Sidmouth
A move that would not amuse Queen Victoria! - Lifestyle - Eastern Daily Press

Honiton sits on the A30 and is 12 minutes from the M5 by this route and is served by a direct rail link to London and Exeter. It is a shorter journey time to Exeter International Airport and Exeter Sky Park when there be a need to visit these places or travel in the reverse direction.

Major development is taking place in the West End of our district at Cranbrook, Sky Park, Science Park, Tithebarn Lane and other adjacent areas and all of these are within 12/15 minutes drive of Honiton. Once Cranbrook railway Station is opened in the near future it will be 12 or 14 minutes train journey from Honiton.  

Futures Forum: "A truly green alternative to EDDC's proposal"

How would the people of East Devon benefit from a relocation to Honiton?

Population benefiting from location of EDDC: 
in Sidmouth = 57,201; in Honiton = 27,271
Miles by Wards and by Councillors 
Devon Town Profiles
Re. Knowle relocation to Honiton…an inconvenient truth | Save Our Sidmouth 
Sidmouth or Honiton…which is the more convenient location for EDDC HQ? | Save Our Sidmouth
EDDC’s ‘ambition’ to move HQ to Honiton…….convenient for whom? | Sidmouth Independent News

Has anyone costed in the time and personal cost to people of attending appointments at an EDDC HQ located in Honiton?,
Currently, just about anyone from surrounding towns and villages can take advantage of many buses that pass through Sidmouth, which is a major transport hub.  What will happen in Honiton when people from areas such as Beer, Branscombe, Colyton, Colyford and Seaton need to visit Honiton?  And many of the other villages to the west of Sidmouth?
Buses from these areas are few and far between at the best of times and there is only one that directly links Seaton with Honiton and none that link Beer and Branscombe directly to Honiton.
Elderly and disabled people will need to get off in Honiton High Street and walk a very long way to the new HQ.  Imagine if you are frail and elderly and looking at a round trip of 4-5 hours to sort out your housing benefit or council tax or some other problem.  No – not everyone has a computer and can do this on a website or has someone willing to take them in a car.
So, new bus routes will be needed – will EDDC be paying for these and where will they go from and to?  A new, unsubsidised bus route (2 buses) would cost a minimum of £200,000 per year according to a local bus company.  Would EDDC arrange new routes and/or re-routing for access to its HQ?  Would it pay for this service, as currently supermarkets do for their special bus routes?  Is this costed in to the relocation budget?  Would failure to cost it into the budget be discriminatory?

How would Councillors benefit from a relocation to Honiton?

The 59 cllrs would face an average increase of 24% in travel miles from their Wards, – while the Cabinet would benefit by a 23% reduction.

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