31 March, 2015
About the area
East Devon is a local government district which was formed in 1974. Its council is based in Sidmouth. It is covered by two Parliamentary constituencies; East Devon and Tiverton & Honiton. Both were retained in the 2010 general election by the Conservative Party.
In the 2011 census there were 132,500 people resident in East Devon. The population has been growing by about 0.5% per year, due to people moving into the area, both for work and to retire. East Devon has one of the highest average ages in the country, with 28% of the population aged over 65. 57% of the working population are professional, managerial or technical workers. Only 3.4% of people travel to work by public transport, which is lower than average, and more people than average depend on the car.
The average house price is £254,000, which is high, though the average family income is only £24,000, making affordability of housing an important issue. A large amount of East Devon is made up of two Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, East Devon AONB and the Blackdown Hills AONB. They are designated under the provisions of the 1949 National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act, in order to secure their permanent protection against development that would damage their special qualities, thus conserving some of the finest landscapes for the nation’s benefit.
The entire East Devon coastline from Exmouth to the border with Dorset is part of the Jurassic Coast, the only natural World Heritage designated site in England. The designated area continues up to Old Harry Rocks near Swanage.