More information about the public event on 4 December

We will be running this as a consultation event to seek people’s views about the type of housing and community they would ideally like to see on Ryebank Fields.  We’ve also done a short blog on What is Community Led Housing to start people thinking about this in advance. The style of the event will be participative, with people mainly contributing in small groups.

In advance, this is what we know about where things are up to.

MMU continue to want to sell the land for housing.  Before anything else happens, Manchester City Council will adopt a Development Framework for the site.  This guides developers on what sort of development would be likely to get planning permission.

Our group have been in to see MMU to talk about a community led option as an alternative to the original proposal for executive homes. They seemed cautiously interested in our ideas but have not got back to us about any specific ongoing involvement.

We see our next steps as gathering views on what a housing development could look like at Ryebank Fields from a community perspective.  We will use this information to seek to influence the Development Framework, which we understand is the next significant step in the process.

Feel free to just turn up on the night but it would be great if you’d let us know you are coming through our Facebook event link or drop us a line on hello@chorltoncommunityledhousing.org

What is community led housing ?

The group thought it would be helpful to set out what we mean by community led housing in the context of our interest in Ryebank Fields.

We see community led housing as being about local people playing a leading and lasting role in creating homes and strong communities.  We believe that when communities and future residents are at the heart of developing homes, that people’s creativity and inherent interest helps achieve more successful, more affordable places for us all.

Community led housing is a broad movement encompassing a range of approaches, including Community Land Trusts (CLTs), cohousingco-operatives, and community self-build.  Homes can be rented, owned or part owned within a variety of affordable models.  It doesn’t necessarily preclude having some standard private sector owner occupied housing which could, for example, sit within a CLT alongside affordable housing.

Community led housing organisations, as well focusing on affordable housing for the community, may decide to prioritise wider benefits to the community such as: protecting local biodiversity, zero carbon measures, not contributing to air pollution, food growing, safe outdoor play space, opportunities to be neighbourly, promoting a local sharing economy and sustainable travel.

Whilst community led housing varies according to local housing needs and aspirations, and the priorities of communities, there are generally three main principles involved. We see these as applying to Ryebank Fields (as an alternative to the traditional disposal and developer-led approach which we oppose). These are that the community has:

  • Full involvement in the process of what is built, and who it is provided for
  • A long-term role in the ownership, stewardship or management of the land and the homes
  • Defined and legally protected the benefits of the scheme for the local area or a specific group in perpetuity.

Achieving a community led housing development at Ryebank Fields is an ambitious endeavour, but we hope that others will be inspired and join with us to help shape ideas into reality. This would ensure that Ryebank Fields is retained as an asset where people will live more sustainably for future generations.

Public event 4 December 2018

Letter to residents

We are a group of local residents who see the opportunity of creating a community led, exemplar development at Ryebank Fields, with a range of homes meeting local housing needs and aspirations, which encourage neighbourliness, are age friendly, low carbon, affordable, support biodiversity, and minimise impact on traffic.

We, along with the overwhelming majority of those who responded to the consultation, opposed the proposals that MMU came up with last year for a development on Ryebank Fields.  We held a public meeting, elected a group to take things further, and drew up a group response. When the consultation report was finally published in July this year we held another packed public meeting.

We were disappointed with many aspects of the report on the consultation but accept that the land is likely to be sold for housing.  We want to make sure the community can influence and shape the eventual outcome as much as possible in line with the principles we developed.  It has taken us a number of months to get to meet with Manchester City Council (MCC) and subsequently with MMU.  We have now had initial meetings with both, during which our ideas were positively received.

As MMU and MCC are both supportive of a participatory approach we are organising an event on Tuesday 4th December 7.30 pm at St John’s RC Primary school, Chepstow Rd, off Longford Rd, to give local residents an opportunity to share constructive ideas on what would make Ryebank Fields a sustainable place to live for people today and for future generations. We intend to take peoples’ ideas forward to future meetings with MMU and MCC.

We know many people just want to oppose any development, which is their right. This event is for those who would like to participate in influencing what sort of a development will take place, including those who may prefer no development, but if there is to be one would like to have their say.   We hope you will join us.

At the event we will get names and contact details of those who want to be involved in future in influencing what sort of a development will take place. If you can’t come on 4th December but want to be involved in the future in this way please email: Hello@chorltoncommunityledhousing.org