Community-Led Housing as a major delivery vehicle for housing and economic growth – Cornwall Council

Posted on 10th November, 2017

Cornwall Council (CC) sees CLH as a major delivery vehicle for housing and economic growth. Through supporting the setting up of an umbrella CLT, Cornwall CLT, and providing revolving loan finance, affordable homes have been created for local people priced out of the housing market.

CC is a rural authority with some large settlements.  It is an area of very high housing demand, where many homes are sold to second home, investment and retirement housing purchasers. There are high house prices but low wages, and no significant private rented sector.

CC is very clear that it needs to use all possible delivery vehicles to encourage housing growth. CLH helps CC to deliver its Local Plan and provide desperately needed affordable housing, as well as housing that is generally more affordable to local people.  CLH also supports economic growth, not only in the construction phase but through providing affordable housing that aids labour market flexibility. CC contributed funding for the setting up of Cornwall CLT which has developed nearly 200 affordable homes, either on its own or through supporting new CLTs as an umbrella organisation.

CC works closely with local CLTs (the umbrella organisation and local groups) and a range of housing associations active in CLH. It supports CLH through:

  • A supportive policy environment: the Affordable Housing Supplementary Planning Document affirms that the Council supports the development of CLTs to meet local housing needs
  • Enabling support: a team enables and supports community groups to provide their own homes – and a new delivery team will unlock custom/self-build opportunities and help communities deliver their neighbourhood plans.
  • Identification of sites: CC is working up a pipeline of sites for CLH groups to take forward.
  • Funding: CC provides a revolving loan facility. Its £5.1m Community Housing Fund allocation will boost CLH output through building capacity in Cornwall Rural Housing Association and Cornwall CLT and unlock five stalled sites with early stage feasibility funding to groups. A community site remediation fund will unlock further brownfield sites for CLH, and capital funding will enable the construction of two CLT sites. A loan facility will help custom-builders and self-builders provide new homes.

Full Case Study: Cornwall Council_ CLH