Saturday, 10 August 2013

East Devon's population

What do we know about the population of East Devon - and what are the issues?

From the Campaign to Protect Rural England:

East Devon & Exeter

East Devon is a local government district in Devon, England. Its council is based in Sidmouth.
The district was formed on 1 April 1974 by the merger of the borough of Honiton with the urban districts of Budleigh Salterton, Exmouth, Ottery St. Mary, Seaton, Sidmouth along with Axminster Rural District, Honiton Rural District and part of St. Thomas Rural District.
East Devon is covered by two Parliamentary constituencies, East Devon and Tiverton and Honiton. Both were retained in the 2010 general election by the Conservative Party.
In the 2001 census it was found that a third of East Devon's population were over 60. The average for England was 24%. East Devon also had a higher number of people living in 'Medical and Care Establishments' at 1.6% compared to the England average of 0.9%.
It is also one of the least ethnically diverse districts, ranking 342 out of 354 at the time of the 2001 census.
A large amount of East Devon is made up of two Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), East Devon AONB and the Blackdown Hills. AONBs have the same level of protection as National parks of England and Wales which restricts new developments, which protects the natural beauty of this district.
The entire East Devon coastline from Exmouth to the border with Dorset is part of the designated World Heritage Site called the Jurassic Coast, the designated area itself continues up to Old Harry Rocks near Swanage.
East Devon & Exeter - Devon District Groups - CPRE Devon - Campaign to Protect Rural England

From the District Council:

About East Devon

The district of East Devon is on the Devon coast in the South West of England.
The East Devon District has an area of 314 square miles.  It sits between the River Exe and outskirts of Exeter to the west, Somerset (inland) and Dorset to the east. At the extremes, the District stretches 30 miles east to west and 15 miles north to south.
Exeter International Airport is located in the District and main line rail services and the national motorway network are easily accessible. East Devon is the largest of the eight Devon districts with a population of 132,457). East Devon is also one of the largest English districts by population. There are 68 town or parish councils across the whole district.
Our main towns are the coastal resorts of Exmouth (Devon’s largest town – pop. 34,432); Budleigh Salterton; Sidmouth; and Seaton. In the mainly rural inland area the settlements are Honiton; Ottery St Mary; Axminster and Broadclyst. A new community called Cranbrook is also being built in the west of the district.
Our coastline forms part of England’s first and only World Heritage site designated for its natural environment. The East Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty lies wholly within the District, together with the greater part of the Blackdown Hills AONB.
You can find out more about the towns and villages in East Devon by following the links below.
PDF file Key Information - including economic data (14KB Portable Document Format - 27 April 2011 - PDF Help)
PDF file East Devon Place Profile September 2012 (1105KB Portable Document Format - 19 September 2012 - PDF Help) provided by Local Futures

Town Profiles

Devon County Council has created a series of town profiles. These describe what it is like to live in each town and the surrounding area based on key facts and figures, including information on population, deprivation, housing, wildlife and crime. To date, four have been completed in East Devon - Axminster, Exmouth, Honiton and Seaton - and more will be added.

Census 2011

You can view a selection of the 2011 census data for East Devon on the Office for National Statistics website..  The data in .pdf format is reproduced by kind permission of the Office for National Statistics.
Page last updated on 13 February 2013

East Devon District Council - About East Devon

From the County Council:

Devon Town Population Projections
July 2007

Overall the population of the Sidmouth area is predicted to increase by 647 people between 2006 and 2021 – a rise of 3.8%. 
The total number in the younger age groups (from 0 to 19) is predicted to decrease by 472 to 2,411 – a fall of 16.4%. 
The 20 to 44 year age band is also predicted to see a decrease, in this case of 297 to 3,078 or 8.8%. 
The 45 to 64 age group should remain almost unchanged, decreasing by just 2 people (0.04%) to 4,617. 
The older age groups (65 years and older) are due to see an increase in number of 1,418. This equates to a 22.7% increase over the 15 years that these projections cover and will take the population in this group to 7,657. 
The largest change is predicted to be in the 70 to 74 age group with an increase of 39.7%.

Sidmouth Devon Town
East Devon Parishes

However, these figures are now out-of-date, with the 2011 census showing that population will in fact increase at a lower rate - as research from the CPRE demonstrates:

East Devon population growth much lower than predicted
6 June 2013

When the discussion turned to how many new homes are needed, Dr Margaret Hall pointed out that the 2011 Census shows that the East Devon population was 4,000 fewer than had been projected, according to the Office of National Statistics. 
Moreover, the ONS projection for 2011-2021 now has a reduced estimated population by about one third. 
Speaking on behalf of the East Devon arm of the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England, she based her talk last night on the following points: East Devon CPRE at Talaton meeting 5th June 2013
East Devon population growth much lower than predicted | Sidmouth Independent News

Another significant factor is the age-profile - which raises issues:

Case study –Ageing population East Devon

Why do we have an ageing population?
In the UK there are 10 million people who are over the age of 65, that is 16% of the population. People are living longer because we have better healthcare, good education and more money to spend on luxuries. In the UK people are getting married later and are having fewer children. Life expectancy is 81 years for women and 76 for men.

Dependency ratio
65% of the population are economically active, 19% of the population are under the age of 15 and 16% are over 65.
19% + 16% x 100 = 53.8%
This means that for every 100 people working there are almost 54 people who are dependants.

. Areas of the UK with a high percentage of old people are unattractive to young people, they do not want to live there.
. Pensioners have a reduced income.
.  Because there is a high number of elderly more pension funds are needed, this puts a strain on the economically active who pay for the pensions via national health contributions.
. An elderly population is a major challenge for the health service. Old people suffer more problems such as needing eye operations and hip replacements, they have more heart problems. This puts more pressure on doctors, chemists and hospitals.
. Dispersed settlement pattern – the elderly live in spread out communities. Transport links are vital to transport people around, many can not drive or afford a car and some of them will have lost their licence.
. The elderly need different kinds of housing.
. Old people contribute £215 billion to the economy.
. Grandparents look after grandchildren so parents can work saving millions of pounds each year.
. Social isolation, old people often live on their own and do not see other people.
. Old people affect what type of shops and facilities there are in the area.
. Old people often do voluntary work.

The area of East Devon
East Devon has the 2nd highest concentration of over 50’s in England. It is a coastal county with beautiful countryside. It is a World Heritage site that protects its natural beauty. 125,000 live near the coast with the rest of the population scattered in villages, housing is expensive.

Meeting housing needs
. Retirement flats
. Residential complexes designed for the elderly include sockets and pull switches at waist height for easy access, emergency pull cords in each room to get assistance quickly and CCTV for security. The complexes have communal areas for people to socialise.

. The elderly go to the doctors more often.
. There are intermediate care homes to free up hospital space.
. NHS try to keep old people in their own homes instead of being in hospital, nurses help at home, this speeds up recovery time.

Facilities and services  
. Old people have more time.
. To keep them mentally and physically active there are computer courses, handicrafts, fitness clubs, the NGO Age Concern organises game clubs at their centres and 60% do swimming sessions at their local pool.

. Having a dispersed settlement makes it difficult to cover the area with transport. Ring and ride buses help by picking up at home, these buses are adapted but wheel chair access is expensive to run. The bus fares are the same as public transport but more funding is need to keep the service going.

The future
The market for catering for the elderly will grow. They will become a powerful force in society. East Devon pensioners already have an action forum and are trying to get lower council taxes, larger pensions and benefits. 

The District Council commissioned a study into 'leisure facilities' which touched on issues of an ageing population:

East Devon Open Space Study
April 2012

The average age of East Devon’s population is significantly higher than the South West average, and a little higher than the English average. This is most pronounced in Seaton, Sidmouth, and Budleigh Salterton. Retiree ages (65-74 and 75-84) are most drastically higher than the averages, and middle aged (30-44) are most drastically lower than the averages. This poses issues for open space requirements based on the activities pursued by different age ranges. Different sports and pass-times are preferred at different ages, and this means that the types, availability, and access to open spaces should reflect the population structure of the area they service. Whilst East Devon’s population is older than the average for both region and country, this should not however mean that services for younger people are neglected.

In areas of population growth, how can opportunities best be provided to meet the needs of new residents? 

A particularly important issue is providing the right facilities for the population. East Devon’s population structure is significantly older than the national or South West averages, and as such, the sports preferences and participation levels are different. It is essential to provide the right facilities; otherwise certain sites will be under-used as not enough people play a certain sport in the district, whilst others will be over-subscribed due to the popularity of alternative sports. 

Parks and gardens are especially important in a district such as East Devon with a significant aged population. Older generations use formal parks and gardens more than any other open space and so there is a need to provide interesting and evolving parks and gardens that can offer the chance for older generations to keep active. They also, as the surveys of young people in East Devon have shown, well used by young people for informal recreation 

The English Allotment Survey (1997) remains the most up to date national guidance on the amount of allotments required per population. This states that in Devon, there should be 12 plots/1000 population. 

Based on the FiT standards, East Devon previously stated that it would aim to meet the overall standard for outdoor sports facilities at 1.60ha/1000 population, and the overall standard for playing pitch provision at 1.20ha/1000 population. 

Whilst it is recognised that urban and rural standards are necessary, it is refuted that provision should be higher in rural areas as rural locations will have less people able to access the playing pitches within a reasonable distance. It is therefore proposed to aim for a higher quantity of sports facilities per 1000 population in urban areas, as this concentrates development in particular areas, attracts larger numbers of people, and is more easily deliverable. In rural areas it would be sensible to ensure that each parish has a minimum of one playing pitch located in an easily accessible area where multiple villages and hamlets might be able to share the facility. 

An element of contributions based on this standard might also be used towards the provision of a Country Park. This is an example of where local authorities adjoining East Devon, such as Exeter City Council, could pool developer contributions in helping to provide an opportunity of cross authority benefit. The expansion and/or improvement of venues such as these could meet the needs of local populations, and those of neighbouring expansion areas. Such provision is currently being discussed in relation to the new settlement at Cranbrook. 

New provision may be required where there is a new development and a planned increase in population, and/or an existing deficiency in supply or access to facilities exists. 

The study has included an analysis of the existing provision of open space against the proposed standards. For each typology, there is an identified ‘sufficient supply’ or ‘under supply’ for each parish. This analysis can also be applied at any defined geographical area with a population attributed to it.

Factors to be taken into account before any decision to release open space for alternative uses can be taken include: 
• The local value and use of a given open space - as it may be a locally popular resource. 
• Whether future local development/population growth might generate additional demands for open space.


An ageing population will have increasing strains on health-care provision:

And on resources in general:

Research shows ageing population in parts of Devon

7 November 2010

Parts of Devon have some of the biggest populations of the over-50s in England, research commissioned by the BBC has found.
The study, conducted by Experian, found the percentage of people aged over 50 and living in East Devon was 49.2%.
In East Devon 49.2% of the population is aged over 50, compared to the national average of 34.5%, making it the sixth largest population in England.
But that is predicted to rise to 38.6% nationally by 2029, and to 55.3% in East Devon.
Contact the Elderly, a national charity, which runs tea parties on Sunday afternoons to ensure people have social interaction, said more provisions are needed to cater for an ageing population.
Suzan Hyland who co-ordinates the groups in East Devon, Tiverton and Torquay said: "In Torquay alone we've had people on the waiting list for over two years.
"We definitely need to provide more facilities because people are living longer, people are healthier but the facilities seems to be disappearing rather than appearing."

BBC News - Research shows ageing population in parts of Devon

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