Cranbrook's minister praises town as she says goodbye

Rev Lythan Nevard, wearing glasses, looking directly at the camera with a smile against a dark background.

Rev Lythan Nevard bids Cranbrook a fond farewell - Credit: Rev Lythan Nevard

This is my last column for the Midweek Herald. I am moving on to a different role in East Anglia. So I am going to take the opportunity to sing praise about the place I have been living in and working in and loving being a part of for the last five years – Cranbrook.

We are aware we are not popular in East Devon, being built on lovely farming land. And that we are sometimes referred to as “Crimebrook”.

But Cranbrook has been built in response to a housing crisis in East Devon and Exeter. Most people who live here are locals. I have lived in 12 different places in my life and can honestly say that this is the friendliest, most caring place I have ever lived.

Even before actual lockdown last year, people in Cranbrook were galvanised into action and within a few days almost the whole town had been covered by volunteers wanting to look after their neighbours. Our Facebook page is full of people ready to help each other out. Most people smile at each other in the street whether they know each other or not – that is becoming more of a challenge as Cranbrook grows but it is still true.

Cranbrook is a place full of young families and a can-do spirit. It is a place to explore, being ‘church’ in a different way as well. Our church, Cornerstone, has no building of its own and we constantly try to be a blessing to our whole community in lots of different ways. And, FYI the crime rate in Cranbrook is really low.

In the Bible, Paul writes: “Timothy, don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity.” 
Jesus too didn’t measure people by their age, sex or level of education either but saw them all as worthy of God’s love. I think whether they are people of faith or not, the inhabitants of Cranbrook actually have an example to set in how lovingly they live together. 
Cranbrook, I’m going to miss you.

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