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TV’s architectural designer is key speaker for Eden Self-Build and Community-led Housing Event

Build Your Home, Build Your Community
Thursday 4 July at the Rheged Centre, near Penrith from 6pm

Charlie Luxton

Do you have a grand design planned for a dream home? You may be wanting to build your own home or are part of a community-led housing project in Eden District? Then attend the free Build Your Home, Build Your Community event on 4 July 2019 at Rheged, near Penrith to receive the latest advice on self-build, custom-build and community-led housing projects.

The event’s key speaker is architectural designer and writer Charlie Luxton, who also presents TV programmes Building the Dream, Homes by the Sea and Homes by the Med on More 4.

Eden District Council is very pleased to be promoting this event in what is national Custom and Self-build Week. Eden District Council’s Planning Policy Manager, Kevin Hutchinson, said: “The Council supported by central government, is keen to encourage more self-build and community-led housing projects and this free event is bringing together industry professionals and key speakers from the self-build industry.

“The Council recognises there is a demand for self-build housing projects locally, which was evidenced by last year’s District-wide Housing Needs Survey, which showed that 445 local people are looking to undertake a self-build housing project over the next five years. So the event on Thursday 4 July is a great opportunity for anyone contemplating a self-build, custom-build or community-led housing project to find out more information and explore their ideas in an informal way with industry experts.”

The event will provide an opportunity to chat with a number of industry professionals (between 6-7pm) including prior to a series of short presentations, which will begin 7pm. Exhibitors at the event currently include:

  • Andy Lloyd – Community Land Trust Network
  • ACT Cumbria Community-led Housing Hub
  • Atkinson Building Contractors
  • 2030 Architects
  • Ben Cunliffe Architects
  • JIW Properties
  • Eden District Council (Planning, Building Control and Community-led Housing)
  • Thomas Armstrong Kit Systems
  • Ecomotive

Key speakers at the event include:

  • Charlie Luxton – architectural designer, writer and TV presenter
  • Patterdale Community Land Trust/Eden Housing Association Partnership
  • Lancaster Forgebank Co-housing
  • Ecomotive, a social enterprise supporting self-build and custom-build group projects with an emphasis on sustainability and affordability
  • Rob Jerams, LoCAL Homes – supplier of high performance low carbon housing
  • Rod Hughes, 2030 Architects
  • Bruce Armstrong-Payne – self-builder
  • Michelle Stevens – Penrith Building Society

National policy recognises that self-build and custom-build housing is a great way to create high quality, value for money housing to help increase diversity in the UK housing market and will provide for an important element of the market in Eden.

Custom-build housing can comprise either:

  • Self-Build Individual plots – where an individual purchases a plot of land and builds a house with/without the support of builder, architect and project manager.
  • Collective custom-builds – where groups constitute themselves as a body to design and develop a custom build housing development which they then live in.
  • Community-led housing projects – usually (though not always) focused on providing local affordable homes where a community sets up a company to deliver homes itself or in partnership with a Housing Association.
  • Developer-led builds – Developers can offer self or custom build plots  as part of larger sites or as specialist developments, and can offer a bespoke design and build service to ease the development process.
  • Cohousing – involves a constituted group of people creating their own neighbourhood of homes with shared facilities.
Bruce Armstrong-Payne

One local planning consultant who has recently completed his own self-build housing project near Penrith is Bruce Armstrong-Payne. He said: “For years I have been looking for an appropriate site to build my own house and I eventually found the right sized plot, where one side of the house faces open countryside and the other part is in a community with a good active spirit.

“I am really pleased that we have achieved an ecologically sound house, with high standards of insulation, it has air source heating technology and is an excellent family dwelling for us at this time of life. I enjoyed the whole process immensely, being involved in the design and sourcing of materials and I have learned a lot about the process and would happily do it again.”

For groups of people looking to take on self and custom-build developments a new helpful resource is being launched in May. The Cumbria and Lancaster Community-Led Housing Hub will offer free advice and consultation to anyone considering working with others to develop their own housing, and will signpost them to funding and expert support. Find out more at:

The free to attend Build Your Home, Build Your Community’ event is on Thursday 4 July 2019 at Rheged near Penrith starting at 6pm. As spaces are limited, register your interest by visiting email [email protected] or call 01768 817817.

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