First of all, we hope you are all well, keeping safe and taking care in these difficult times.
Double landmark day for Land Trust
Contracts exchanged and first tenants appointed
The Midhurst Community Land Trust has exchanged contracts on their first two houses in Midhurst, the first of their kind in Sussex. Also, after an interview process, we have now offered and had accepted, the tenancies of our two houses off Lamberts Lane with planned occupation sometime in May. We are so pleased that we have been able to offer houses to two families in the area and wish them a happy future in their new homes.
The two houses at Wyndham Court off Lambert’s Lane in Midhurst are currently in the final stages of construction by award-winning Metis Homes who have a successful history of developments in the town.
Adrian Moore Midhurst CLT Chairman said, “This is great news for the area and the first of a number of projects we have in the pipeline. The houses are for rental as affordable housing and protected for the benefit of our community through the asset-lock protection in our Rules.”
Midhurst District Councillor, Gordon McAra said, “This initiative is a game changer for the town, they are the first Community Land Trust properties in the district, and I hope the first of many low-cost housing projects for our local community.”
Members of the Midhurst Community Land Trust: Neil Hart, James Brigden Community Led Housing Officer, Chichester CDC, Gordon McAra, Adrian Moore and Peter Gibbon
Second Project goes to planning
6 single bedded flats
To meet the ever-increasing demand for affordable homes in the Midhurst area, especially by key workers, we are hoping to buy and develop a brownfield site in New Road, Midhurst.
The current site is occupied by a number of derelict garages and is the ideal location, being on the main bus route and close to the centre of the town, for a small development of 6 single bedded flats that are much needed in the area.
We are about to submit an application for full planning permission for the site. The plans were drawn up by local architect, Charlie Boher.
Commenting on the proposed new development:
Adrian Moore, Chairman of the Trust said “This is the second project we are proposing, and it will help meet the heavy demand for affordable housing for single people, including key workers to the town and maybe older people who want to downsize. We are very pleased that this small development can add to the vigour of the town and hope it is widely welcomed by our local community.”
District Councillor Gordon McAra also said, “The Community Land Trust, with amazing help from CDC and the National Park, is really getting its act together and this will be another vital solution to helping people to get suitable and affordable housing in the Midhurst area.”
Other projects are progressing. We are in negotiation to refurbish a large building that will, subject to planning consent, be converted into 3 two bedroom and 1 one-bedroom apartments.
We are now preparing business plans, including detailed costings for the projects, so that we can approach wider government bodies for further grants and financial institutions for long term loans.
As ever we are very grateful for the excellent support from both the Chichester District Council and the South Downs National Park Authority and much of what we have done during these initial stages would not have been possible without their advice and support.
Please sign up
A key persuasive element in the business case is the strength of the support from the community. Your full moral support is needed to achieve everyone’s long-term objective: more affordable homes in the area for local people and key workers, who are important to the fabric of the town and area.
So, your individual support and the support of your group, society or Council will help significantly in strengthening our business case and in securing funds.
Registering your support to the MCLT is key to us being able to demonstrate that we have Midhurst and the surrounding area right behind us.
It may be that you or someone you know would want to benefit from having a property at an affordable rent. If they are local and fit our allocation policy (please see the website) then alert them to the Midhurst Community Land Trust and ask them to register their interest.
Please register either by visiting our website www.midhurstclt.org or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send to you, via the Midhurst Community Land Trust newsletter, updated information. Alternatively, you can write to us at the address at the base of this newsletter.
A key part of our funding opportunities depends on us obtaining charitable status. Our application is in its final stages with the Charity Commission, and we should hopefully hear by the end of the summer and updates will be available on our website.
Town Hall Meeting
When times allow, we will arrange for an informal evening at the Old Library to share more fully what plans we have been able to move forward on and to answer questions about the Midhurst Community Land Trust.