Lavenham Community Land Trust (LCLT)
The LCLT acquired the freehold interest in what is now Peek Close in 2017. Work on site commenced in January 2018 and residents moved in during October 2019. This award-winning development was built on a redundant Highways depot owned by Suffolk County Council. LCLT had neither the management capacity to develop the site, nor the necessary skills to identify the risks associated with property development. Thus, it was decided to partner with a Registered Provider that had expertise in delivering housing schemes in a rural setting and one that had some experience of our village. Hastoe Housing Association Ltd (Hastoe) was chosen as our preferred partner and was also known to Babergh District Council housing team and Lavenham Parish Council. Hastoe also had the added benefit of working with Community Land Trusts elsewhere.
The development comprises 18 homes, 13 for rent and five leasehold shared ownership properties. This development has won two awards. LCLT won the 2018 Babergh Community Project of the Year Award and in 2021 with Hastoe the Best Partnership award at the national Inside Housing Development Awards.
Throughout the planning and development process the community was informed, consulted and their contribution heeded. This was done through publicity and consultation events. The consultation events were well attended by locals expressing general interest and support as well as potential occupiers of the homes.
This was the first such community led development in the Babergh district and was achieved with the support of our Parish, District and County councils, Community Action Suffolk and Homes England. The main contractor was DCH Construction and the properties were built to the Association for Environment Conscious Building (AECB) Building Standard, making these homes truly affordable to run.
LCLT was incorporated on 8th April 2015, as a community benefits society under the Co-operative and Community Benefits Societies Act 2014. It is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and is affiliated to the Community Land Trusts Network and enjoys charitable status from HM Revenue and Customs. For more information please visit the LCLT website - http://lavenhamclt.onesuffolk.net/