Foundations for Community Led Housing


This is a summary of the recently published Report called “Foundations for Community Led Housing”

Although published by the “Future of London” Group for London, this report which contains current Case Study examples, is relevant to other Cities and Towns, including Sutton Coldfield: both Town Centre and Langley SUE.

Over the past decade, community-led housing has risen from relative obscurity to gain attention and growing support from a diverse range of citizens, government and the built environment community. What’s fuelling this interest is clear and that is the pressing need for more affordable homes.

To tackle chronic under-supply, councils have re-entered the market and traditional house-builders are working to accelerate development. But big developers are set up to deliver big schemes and 25% of the sites identified for London’s future housing are under 0.25 hectares.

So bringing smaller builders back into the mix is critical to delivering homes in these smaller spaces. Research from Grosvenor found just 2% of the public trust developers and only 7% trust local authorities when it comes to large-scale development. All levels of government recognise the value of community-led approaches in delivering homes and integrated social value outcomes on complex or contentious sites. The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, working with Homes England and the GLA, has identified a potential pipeline of around 16,700 community-led homes across England. In London, community-led housing efforts have access to a £38m funding pot to support delivery; a hub providing technical expertise to groups and authorities; and land is being made available to SME builders. Despite this, projects often falter due to misaligned priorities of groups and landowners and a lack of local authority confidence or sector capacity to support the CLH approach through to delivery.

To help overcome these barriers, Future of London led a major action learning programme throughout 2019, bringing its membership together with community groups to build relationships and support the Mayor’s ambition of 500 starts on new community-led homes by 2023. The project brought together more than 250 people from the public, private and third sectors through interactive workshops and seminars. Their expertise and experience, combined with desk-based research and interviews, forms the basis of this report.

It includes:

• An overview of community-led housing in London and how it is being delivered, covering best practice in partnerships and planning, access to land and funding

• Case studies showing effective ways of delivering projects

• Recommendations for policymakers, CLH groups and built environment practitioners

• Signposting to additional resources

Future of London is grateful to core partners Community Led Housing London, igloo Community Builders and Pollard Thomas Edwards for financial and content contributions and to partners Legal & General and the Bartlett Real Estate Institute for their expertise and support with events.


igloo Community Builders


Future of London Group


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