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Is community-led housing part of the answer?

by on March 9, 2017

The recent Housing White Paper ‘Fixing our broken housing market’ asserted that traditional models for house building are not enough to deliver the housing numbers we need.  Several possible models to diversify the market were floated – all covered in our news that week – but if we are to look for smaller sites for development is there a role for community-led housing in this mix?

This question is currently being explored by a project in a local community here in Bristol.  Led by Knowle West Media Centre (KWMC) and funded by Bristol City Council and Arts Council England, the ‘We Can Make…’ project brings together the local community with planning and building professionals, academics, artists and policy makers.  Working together they are exploring how communities can lead and influence development in their area so that it meets their needs and interests.

This isn’t just neighbourhood planning.  It’s a test space for a new kind of housing model and as far as I’m aware this project is the first of its kind.

If you’re interested, to attend the next event it’s next Thursday 16th 4.30 – 6.30pm at the Knowle West Media Centre (Leinster Avenue, BS4 1NL).  To find out more contact

If you’re involved in other similar projects, do add a comment.

[Note: To be open about my interest here, I’m also Chair of Trustee at KWMC (on a voluntary basis) and passionate about the work they do in South Bristol.  Its not often that my two interests collide, but I’m pleased to be able to help when they do]



From → Housing Delivery

One Comment
  1. Trevor Dennington permalink

    “The recent Housing White Paper ‘Fixing our broken housing market’ asserted that traditional models for house building are not enough to deliver the housing numbers we need.”
    Well, traditional models would be, but for two factors, one introduced by Brown’s dying Labour government and the other by Cameron and Osborne.
    (1) Brown attempted one of his stealth taxes by introducing Planning Gain Supplement which was a “supplement” to nothing but another try at introducing a tax on planning permission and new homes that has utterly failed and messed up the housing supply EVERY TIME it has been tried on since 1948.
    (2) When Brown was dismissed by the electorate, Cameron and Osborne – unlike all Conservative governments before them which scrapped the tax on new housebuilding,- adopted his Planning Gain Supplement as their own and changed the name to the more worthy-sounding Community Infrastructure “Levy”, cunningly copying Brown again by avoiding using the dirty word “Tax”.
    Add to CIL separate Affordable Housing demands of anything up to 30%-40% of GDV, with 3,000 of the previous 6,000 SME housebuilding businesses calling it a day because they’re not going to risk 6-figure sums to buy land and build a house for sale when their return on that risk is around a paltry 7%, and the reason for the housing shortfall is nothing short of blindingly obvious.


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