The first residents are about to move into Cranbrook after a local family bought a brand new Bovis Home there - the first completed house sale at Exeter's exciting new sustainable community.
Mark and Sara Bennellick, from Exeter, received the keys from Bovis Homes sales advisor Jayne Hill, a milestone moment in the life of Cranbrook, which will eventually host 2,900 new homes and become the first major settlement seen in Devon since the Middle Ages.
The house is a two bedroom coach house and is located within Bovis Homes' first phase of new homes, called 'Heron's Reach'.
Mark, who works in financial services, and wife Sara, who works for the Exeter Disability Centre, have bought the house to rent out - and the first occupants will be daughter Kerry and boyfriend Samuel Hudson.
"It's very exciting and in the future it will be great to look back on this time knowing we were the first to complete in the whole of Cranbrook," said Mark. "We were excited about the concept of a brand new town on the outskirts of Exeter and Cranbrook is in a great location and will have excellent facilities and transport links.
"We have been considering a buy-to-let investment for a while and really liked the prospect of a new-build as everything is modern and up-to-date which gives you real peace of mind."
Sara explained: "We also had in mind the fact that Kerry and Samuel wanted to set up home together after finishing university, so it was perfect timing and seemed an ideal solution for all of us. We get excellent tenants, and Kerry and Samuel are excited by the prospect of living in a brand new home at Cranbrook.
"We all really liked the design and location of the coach house and we have to say Bovis Homes have been absolutely fantastic, especially Jayne. Everyone we have met at Bovis has been so customer-focused, and nothing has been too much trouble to anyone."
Kerry, 21, works in Exeter in a customer services role having graduated from De Montfort University and 23-year-old Samuel has just graduated from Winchester University as a newly-qualified primary school teacher.
The Bennellicks were among the hundreds of people who visited Cranbrook on its first day of opening in May.
Mark said: "It was extremely busy on that opening weekend but we were very impressed with the quality of the Bovis show homes. We registered an interest in the coach house, which wasn't built at that stage, but as soon as we could view it a couple of weeks later, we liked it immediately and made an offer."
Bovis Homes' sales advisor Jayne, who has been selling homes in the Exeter area since 1983 and has been working closely with estate agents Countrywide at Cranbrook, was delighted and proud to be handing over the keys to the community's first homeowners and residents.
"When you think of the significance of Cranbrook and the opportunities it provides for local people - in terms of homes, facilities and jobs - this has got to be the best moment of my career. As someone who has worked in the industry a while, this is a joy to be a part of. Visitors are full of enthusiasm and there is a real buzz for what is on offer here. As a housebuilder we are about creating communities and that is exactly what Cranbrook will be - with this first completion being a major milestone in the development of that community."
Home buyers wishing to find out more information about Heron's Reach, Cranbrook can contact Jayne on 01392 340025 or visit www.bovishomes.co.uk which also gives further information about Bovis Homes' purchase assistance schemes.