Palace Green Homes firmly believe in involving local people in the designs of local developments, and in 2016 they teamed up with Haddenham Community Land Trust (HCLT) to deliver affordable community housing in Haddenham, Ely. The Community Land Trust (CLT) homes will all be available to local families to ensure they can live close to their work, family and friends. The community-led development at West End Gardens will deliver 54 beautifully designed two, three and four-bedroom homes, including 19 CLT properties, with space to work, entertain and grow.
HCLT, with the support of the Parish Council and East Cambridgeshire District Council, was created to give people who live and work in Haddenham a voice in how they want the village to develop and how it could benefit the wider community.
To ensure the views of the community were heard and valued, prior to submitting a planning application, Palace Green Homes set up an engaging four-part consultation process and invited all residents within the parish to a public exhibition. A total of 325 residents attended the events, sharing their thoughts on the development and discussing property styles to ensure the new designs would complement the village and surrounding area. Attendees were encouraged to use post it notes and place markers to showcase areas of the village where local activities took place or held significant value.
Palace Green Homes listened to the feedback of the community and key elements of the development were revised; including more green space, developing bungalows on the boundary to reduce any visual impact on the skyline and an increased number of 2 bed homes within HCLT-ownership.
As a result of the engagement with local residents and stakeholders, support for the development increased when the revised plans were shared, where 61% of residents expressed their preference for the revised plans. Support was also expressed for the provision of more affordable housing in the village, with a rise in support from 69% to 74% due to the inclusion of more affordable properties.
Mark Hugo, Chair of HCLT, said: “Palace Green Homes has been a fantastic developer to work with. They feed their profits back to East Cambridgeshire District Council, so at every stage of the process it was felt that the community was benefiting. The money from these developments means that we should have a fund for the community for years to come, with the properties owned by the CLT in perpetuity.
“Palace Green Homes and HCLT ensured that the designs and layout of the development was suited to and well received by the community. We have had lots of excellent feedback so far from the local community and our first residents in these homes. As a member of the local community myself, and the other members of the HCLT, we can truly say that this development and every stage of the consultation process had local people in mind.”
The development has now completed 26 homes, with 14 transferred to HCLT. There will be a total of 19 affordable homes transferred to HCLT, a number that increased because of expression of interest during consultation.
For further information about West End Gardens, please visit /developments/west-end-gardens