Our ambition is grow our membership of volunteers and develop an intermediate housing market in Eastbourne
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Trustees continue to work on land acquisition and are seeking funding opportunities and business partners...
We are awaiting news of the guidance for the latest Homes England grant, which will be published in August 2021. This is funding for pre-development costs.
We have now received a land contract from EBC and are seeking legal advice whilst also updating our business plan and community shares prospectus to be launched in September.
Eastbourne Herald publishes an article about the Housing Minister visiting Sussex and the Zed factory producing modular housing units to help those struggling to buy as house prices rise across Sussex.
EBC & ECLT agree heads of terms and an exchange of land contract date is set for mid July 2021.
Eastbourne Borough Council cabinet members approved the transfer of land off Biddenden Close in Langney Eastbourne to Eastbourne Community Land Trust.
The land already has planning permission and the disused domestic garages site has no tenants
In early 2021 there were at least 499 live UK projects
"The lack of decent and affordable housing for the people of this nation is a scandal that must be addressed with imagination and determination; across parties, across institutions and across communities."
Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Foreword to "Coming Home" published in 2020
As a social enterprise we are collaborating with associates and partners across all sectors,
including government, the public sector, local businesses, and with community and third sector organisations.
Eastbourne Borough Council are supporting us with land and a grant to help us develop five new houses for families in housing need.
We are actively raising funds for our first new build project, and need people like you to help us.
We need churches, charities and businesses to help us achieve our goals. Demonstrate your heart for our community by helping us.
Follow our journey below...
During most of 2020 trustees met online via Zoom with other CLTs and the Sussex Housing Hub to further develop our plans around raising finance, construction methods and partners. ECLT held it's first AGM on Zoom in November 2020. With the help of Accountant, John Caladine, ECLT also submitted it's first set of accounts and Report to the FCA.
Finding construction partners and getting quotes is a lengthy process and we are hampered in making progress by several lockdowns affecting our ability to travel and meet on site with potential contractors.
The new site had permission to build five 2Bed houses. We began working on a plan to build two 3Bed and three 2Bed houses to accommodate different size families in housing need.
Lockdowns began, due to the Covid-19. ECLT work stalled for several months, but in May 2020 the Council wrote with an offer of land in Langney and a grant to help kickstart our fundraising efforts.
Sarah Roberts from Eastbourne Borough Council worked once again with us to find an alternative site, and another disused domestic garage site was identified, this time in Langney. The site already had planning permission and we were assured all tennancies had ceased and the garages were in fact empty.
With plans unfolding and costings looking favourable, we wrote in August 2019 to local residents living around the disused garages and asked them to meet with on site. We wanted to let them know of our plans and invite involvement. However, we discovered the garages were still in use and residents didn't want to lose them. A huge issue was parking and access for residents. We promised to walk away from developing the land and some residents joined ECLT as Members because they had been listened to.
See below our journey since May 2018...
During 2019 we had several meetings with Eastbourne Borough Council exploring the terms of our partnership working and some outline terms were drafted.
With land in sight, and a potential construction partner lined up, ECLT arranged a couple of public meetings with Hampden Park residents with Fr Adam Ransom's support at St Peter's Church hall. This was to introduce ourselves and the concept of community led housing. About 20 people attended and our hope was to find support within the community and to also discover if there were nearby people in housing need who might benefit from our plans.
ECLT were introduced to Newhaven based factory, Boutique Modern, a ten year old family firm run by father and son Dick and Lucas Shone who manufacture housing units. Volunteers visited the factory and were suitably impressed. We began learning more about this modular method of construction and continued working with Lucas to see if their cost effective methods were suitable for our project.
During 2019, and with help from Sarah Roberts, Business Development Officer, at Eastbourne Borough Council, a plot of land in Hampden Park was identified for a possible new build development. The proposal was to demolish existing domestic garages and build eight 2Bed units. Work began on costing the project to check if it was viable for affordable housing.
On 11 December 2018 ECLT received news that our Registration with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) was complete. Eastbourne Community Land Trust (ECLT) became formally a legal entity known as Community Benefit Society RS007293 on the FCA Mutuals Register. We were aided in this as a Start Up Affiliate with the National CLT Network who brokered our application. The Trustees appointed by members of the initial interest group, and subsequently formed steering group, were Sandy Medway; Christopher Snook; Howard Medway and Gordana Glamnovska.
After months of education in CLT formation and related activities, with Graham Maunders from the Sussex Community Housing Hub, the steering group held a public launch at Eastbourne Town Hall on 26 November 2018. Attended by over 50 guests, which including several local councillors and the current MP, Caroline Ansell. Most attendees paid £1 and signed up as the first ECLT Members. Speakers included brief talks by several founding members who shared their passion for getting involved and volunteering to support a new movement for community-led affordable housing in Eastbourne.
Here are links to informative websites relating to affordable housing. Click the logo image to visit their web page article.
What is an affordable housing scheme, and how can it help you get on to the property ladder?
Buying through shared ownership: When you buy a home through a shared ownership scheme you buy a share of the property and pay rent on the rest.
The share you can buy is usually between 25% and 75%. You can buy a 10% share on some homes..
The government has announced the prospectus for the 2021-26 Affordable Homes Programme (AHP). It plans to build up to 180,000 new homes with investment confirmed in the Budget in March – £7.5bn will be distributed via Homes England and the government will negotiate with the Greater London Authority on the use of the remaining £4bn for London..
Action in Rural Sussex has been operating a housing enabling service for over 25 years, helping to deliver many affordable housing schemes to meet local needs.
Experience has shown, that continuous technical advice and support from locally-based expert advisers, is the key to helping communities navigate the many obstacles to ensure delivery of successful housing projects.
We provide two specialist services – The Sussex Community Housing Hub and a Rural Housing Enabling Service.