The Marches area has lots of local groups for community led housing developments some of which have been thriving for many decades. They have much to offer in terms of learning and experience to some of the new groups emerging.
Ross & District CLT
RDCLT are a new organisation started during covid in a community that epitomises the housing issues facing young people and families in market towns. They are looking for more members and are investigating a couple of promising sites for new build and refurbishment into affordable homes to rent. For more information go here.
Birchwood Hall Community
Birchwood Hall Community was formed in 1970 and is based on 8 acres in the Herefordshire side of the Malvern Hills. People live here for ethical and practical reasons and because they want to share their lives and experiences beyond the confines of the nuclear family. Find out more here.
Bishops Castle CLT
Bishops Castle CLT were established in 2007 as an Industrial & Provident Society, voluntarily run by a Board of Directors. The Directors are residents of the area, sharing the view that issues as important as the use of land need to be represented by local views and influenced by local opinion. They have recently purchased a retail unit to convert the first floor into 1 bed affordable flats, while keeping the retail space active on the high street. Find out more here.
Earthworm Housing Co-operative
Earthworm Housing Co-operative started in 1989 on a site with a large Edwardian house set in 7 acres of grounds. The community accommodates its members in 3 flats, a small house, and a large shared house as well as a static caravan. Find out more here.
Fownhope parish is in the Wye Valley AONB some 7 miles from Hereford. The 2011 Census population was 999. In July 2016 the Parish Council Neighbourhood Plan was approved: 67% voted ‘Yes’. The Plan committed the Parish Council to ‘take the lead in setting up the Fownhope Community Land Trust’: p.41 para.31.3. A steering group was set up with parish councillors and other residents. Public meetings were held with speakers from the NCLT and Start-up funding granted. Membership of Fownhope CLT was encouraged (March 2019: 42 members). A housing needs survey was carried out in the autumn of 2018. In February 2019 a meeting of members appointed a committee of six with the task of investigating and incorporating Fownhope CLT. Fownhope CLT was registered in June 2019. The Board applied for a national seedcorn grant to explore possibilities for FCLT to be involved with affordable homes for local people. It was successful and the grant received in February 2020.
Larkrise cohousing is an exciting new community-led housing project. We are an intentional community that aims to provide a space to live and be through conscious collaboration. A place that both celebrates the uniqueness and beauty of each individual whilst also appreciating that together our magic is greater. It aims to build and provide homes that are both ecological and affordable. Laying down beautiful eco-friendly housing in Much Birch in Herefordshire that aims to provide affordable housing now and for future generations. For more information go here
Malvern Hills Community Land Trust
MHCLT is a Community Benefit Society set up by ordinary people with a vision of creating truly affordable good quality energy efficient housing built by the community for the community. The group meets on a monthly and recently held a community consultation event to find out what sort of community led housing is needed and also to gather feedback on current plans for an older persons cohousing development. Find out more by visiting their facebook page or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Windflower Housing Association
Windflower Housing Association based at Canon Frome Court is a co-housing group which celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2019. It has 18 residential units leased from the co-op which owns the site and one rental and one shared ownership property. The site includes a 40 acre smallholding which residents all share, car club, biomass district heating system, and many other shared facilities. The group are currently undertaking feasibility and planning applications for adding up to 3 more affordable homes on the site. They have just recently been offered a grant from the Homes England Community Housing fund to do this work. They have regular open weekends and events and for details of these as well as other information please see the website or email email@example.com