We are so happy to have Bournemouth Churches as our new housing association partner.
Getting development partners on board was the next challenge for Bridport Cohousing. We had the first phase of the land and access to it, the plans and the planning permission, huge support from the local authorities, friends, family and the community and a growing number of committed members, but we still needed partnerships with outside organisations to make the vision a reality.
Part of that vision has been to work in tandem with a housing association which would understand what makes a cohousing scheme different and see that as an asset to the way they run their own business.
On the face of it, cohousing might look like a more expensive option for a housing association to consider, as there is the cost of the common house to factor in as well as the higher specifications of the build itself, in terms of high levels of insulation and provision for generating our own power, for example.
However, when taking a holistic approach to the potential benefits that living in this type of housing might offer, such as the well documented improvements to health and wellbeing , Bournemouth Churches immediately ‘’got it’’. We met them face to face several times and have always been greeted with positivity and enthusiasm combined with a very down to earth approach.
Their values completely resonate with ours
- Personal integrity
- The importance of every individual
- To honour and empower the people they serve
- The importance of working as a team
They are friendly, effective, concerned and run an impressive social programme alongside their housing programme to enable their residents /tenants to improve their lives, employing 500 people to deliver their services. We also liked that their offices are not plush and display paintings on the walls of the board room that their residents have done. We think we have found the best partner and a huge thanks to member Chris for introducing them.
The icing on the cake was the announcement on Monday 17 September of the opening of the second phase of the Community Housing Fund and the news that funding towards shared facilities, like a common house, is part of the package. Good news for us and for our new housing association partner.