Community Led Housing Think Tank: Unlocking the Potential of Community Building – Trafford Hall Chester – 29th & 30th January 2019
Chairs: Roger Saunders and Mark Jackson
The Government has launched a Community Housing Fund to support small, community organisations wanting to create homes in their local areas for people who need secure, decent, affordable places to live. There are a myriad of organisations keen to help. The fund with help Community Land Trusts, Co-operatives, Tenant Management Organisations and other community organisations to house more people.
Many skills are involved in creating homes, including find viable sites; empty homes and disused buildings; finance and audit; legal structures and contracts; planning and design; building regulations, access, fairness and openness; ongoing management. Training in these areas is crucial in order to be eligible for Government funds and support. The Think Tank will discuss these requirements and ways to access professional support.
There are technical barriers to developing homes and contributing to local development. This Think Tank will work through the barriers and help groups problem solve – it will present successful case studies, and discuss the potential of projects through round table brainstorming sessions.
One clear way of overcoming some of the barriers is to work in partnership with established housing associations that have, over time, built up development capacity. This can cut red tape and give groups the chance to learn while they grow. It will help community led housing organisations take up and use the Government’s Community Housing fund.
Representatives from Government will attend the Think Tank, and help to clarify how to turn policy into practice. Homes England will hopefully also participate. Housing associations and local authorities, keen to support the growth of community-led and community based housing, are welcome.
Support from the Community Land Trust Network, the Confederation of Co-operative Housing, the National Federation of Tenant Management Organisations and the Nationwide Foundation. Involvement and support of all community led housing groups are warmly welcome.