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Somerset Co-operative Community Land Trust

Who benefits

This share offer's primary target community is people in Somerset who are in need of more affordable homes. Through providing more affordable homes to rent and to buy, Somerset Co-operative CLT will serve people who currently find it difficult to buy or rent a decent, affordable home in Taunton.

Providing permanently affordable housing

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As a Community Land Trust, SCCLT will create more affordable, sustainable housing, by building new homes, refurbishing properties and engaging the community in urban farming. SCCLT create housing themselves, and support others to do the same.

Somerset Co-operative CLT plan to use the proceeds from this share offer to develop their existing sites in East Reach, Taunton and acquire a further site at the former Exmoor Ales site in Wiveliscombe.

Following the success of the last share offer in 2018, which facilitated the purchase of 11A East Reach, SCCLT has applied for planning permission to undertake a development of 8 affordable units to the rear of 10 & 11A East Reach. The existing properties already bring in regular income from the upstairs flats and from the ground floor shop presently rented by a massage therapist. SCCLT also have the option to buy the former Exmoor Ales site in Wiveliscombe and have until March 2021 to complete the purchase.  Following completion they hope to develop a site offering a mix of affordable live and work units.

The community

Somerset Co-operative CLT recognises the impact that unaffordable housing can have. There is increasing pressure on social housing waiting lists, and concern about the quality of rented accommodation at the lower end of the housing market. People who are already in poverty can be pushed further into poverty by living in poor quality, hard to heat homes.

A lack of affordable housing to rent and buy can also impact on the area’s ability to attract and retain talented young people who will set up businesses and create employment.

Somerset Co-operative CLT's primary target community is people in Taunton who are in need of more affordable homes. Through providing more affordable homes to rent and to buy, SCCLT will serve people who currently find it difficult to buy or rent a decent, affordable home. They will encourage people in housing need to become members of SCCLT (people can become members of the community benefit society for £1) and encourage tennants to become members of the SCCLT board.  This share offer will allow SCCLT to extend their reach to Wiveliscombe, a small market town in Somerset which serves as a strategically important hub for the vibrant 'ten parishes' area in and around the Brendon Hills.  They view this development as a local project with potentially national significance - and their hope is that this model will be replicated in towns across the UK.

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