How do I go about setting up a Community Land Trust in my area?

  1. Talk to your community and ask us for some initial advice.
    Speak to other residents, your Parish Council, Neighbourhood Forum or Residents' Association about the possibility of setting up a CLT and meet our Rural Housing Enabler to discuss your ideas and options. Gaining the support of other members of your community for a CLT project is the key to its success. Also, talk to local land and property owners as they may be able to help you.
  2. Recruit members for your Community Land Trust.
    A way of achieving this is to organise a public meeting where you can explain the project and what your group wants to do for the area and also ask for volunteers to be part of your CLT. Talk to local businesses, charities and other local groups to help build support for your project.
  3. Establish the local housing need and the purpose of the project.
    Decide with the rest of the community what sort of need you want to meet e.g. we want to create X number of affordable homes for young families. You might want to bring an empty, disused building back into use for housing e.g. a former pub or farm building.
  4. Consider and agree how the Community Land Trust will be governed.
    This will involve deciding what type of organisation you want to be and formally appointing members.
  5. Search for and select a suitable site.
    It is important to keep an open mind and consider all the sites that may be suitable and seek advice from the council. It is also worth contacting all local landowners and property owners as they may want to assist you.
  6. Secure funding to cover set up costs and start applying for funding for land purchase and development costs.
    You will need funding to cover set up costs and purchase land. As well as asking people to donate money there are also a wealth of different funding opportunities on offer including grants from Chichester District Council for the purchase of land / property.
  7. Draw up initial designs and seek wider community support.
    You will need to work out what can be achieved on your site and whether there are any factors that might prevent or restrict development. You will also want the scheme to reflect local styles and be in keeping with the visual quality of the local area. It is likely that a number of technical, environmental and ecological surveys will need to be undertaken. Consultation with the wider community will be vital to maintain support.
  8. Consider and agree how land/property will be purchased and apply for planning permission.
    This will involve deciding how you will secure the land and / or property. This could be by working with a registered housing provider or a developer. They may apply for planning permission on your behalf or oversee the development process.
  9. The development stage.
    You may want to be fully involved in making all the decisions but if you do not have the capacity you may opt for passing on the day-to-day issues to another organisation to reduce the risks.
  10. Allocating new local homes to local people.
    You will be able to decide how the properties are let, the rent levels, who they are managed by and how to ensure they are well maintained.

Get involved

We are keen to talk to anyone interested in getting involved or setting up a Community Land Trust.

If you have any queries, please contact our Community Led Housing Officer, James Brigden.