Learn About Community Self Build in London

Open to everyone interested community self builds, this event will cover key tips to start a collective project
by Sofia Delgado
17th October 2018

With community-led housing projects gaining momentum, Impact Hub Brixton is hosting an evening talk on October 22nd for those wishing to find out more about this model.

The event, free of charge, is open to the public and will touch on successful community self builds and how community-led projects are rapidly presenting themselves as a potential solution to the housing crisis.

Talking at the Brixton event, called ‘How could we make community-led cohousing the next big thing in London?’ is Alex Whitcroft, director of Kin Architects.

“Community-led housing offers a very viable alternative to the speculative house-building that dominates the housing market in the U,” says Alex. “It has the potential to deliver a significant percentage of our housing, and is already doing so in many other European countries. By meaningfully involving people in the creation of homes for themselves and their local communities we can deliver better and more affordable homes.”

Specialising in sustainable and community-led projects, Alex will share examples of successful community-led projects around the world – including schemes he is currently working with in the UK – and key tips for joining or setting up your own community self build initiative.

Women from OWCH in the homes in North London

Read more: Successful community self build Older Women’s CoHousing

“We are seeing amazing growth in the number of people interested and the amount of projects starting out,” he adds. “From communities wanting to deliver homes for those in need in their areas to older people wanting a better, more social option for living while ageing.

“The challenge now is to scale this citizen sector by streamlining the process and providing the support groups need to succeed.

“KIN is an enabler, either as consultants or development partners, we provide groups with community facilitation, development management and sustainable architectural design expertise to help accelerate them.”

Alex will also share his experience as a co-founder of London Cohousing, a community housing group seeking to build inclusive neighbourhoods of affordable homes across London.

Deputy Housing Mayor James Murray with community self build group RUSS

Read more: RUSS – Lewisham’s community self build legacy

Earlier this year the government launched a multi-million pound community housing fund to help self build groups across England. The grant will be divided into two phases, providing revenue grants to assist community housing projects with planning costs and capital for site infrastructure and capital grants for the construction of affordable housing.

In London, Mayor Sadiq Khan has announced further support for self build groups by funding a new London Community-led Housing Hub, which provides information, advice and technical support for communities wishing to develop their own homes.

Through the Innovation Fund, Mr Khan has granted £988,000 to the RUSS initiative, which will provide training in construction skills to ensure the Lewisham community self build complies with Building Regulations, Health & Safety measures etc.

The event is free of charge but booking is required. To find out more visit the eventbrite website or Impact Hub Brixton.

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