Skip to main content

Community Land Trust

15 January 2020

As you will be aware, there is currently an unfulfilled need in the village for affordable social housing to rent and a couple of years ago the community sacrificed its S106 funding to help set up the new school.  At the end of last year NSC Parish Council set up two initial meetings in order to assess the local appetite for a Community Land Trust with a view to addressing these shortcomings

The parish council also registered an interest in the old school site as a potential asset of community value.  Unfortunately our application was turned down by the Mid Devon Planners in spite of an appeal.  At the same time the old school site was put on the market by Devon County Council,  with a short response date of December 10th 2019
NSC PC held discussions with a housing association bidding for the site but unfortunately we have just heard that their offer to Devon County Council was not successful and a subsequent follow up with the County Council's Agent did not reveal any further news to us either as the sale is not yet finalised and is considered commercially sensitive.  Once selected the successful offer will have to go in front of  MDDC planning for approval.
While continuing to work for the communities interests, your Parish Council consider that while this building plot in the village remains on the market and until a successful bidder and their plans are known, the next  CLT meeting (originally planned to be held @7:30 pm on Wednesday 29 January 2020 in the Village Hall) should be postponed .
Be assured your council  will continue to follow up on this subject and once more information becomes available, the news will be publicised and  further meetings convened. Please get in touch if there are any questions arising


Following a well attended public meeting held on 17 October 2019, a further meeting was arranged for Wednesday 27 November and the notes are shown below 

Notes from Newton St Cyres Community Land Trust Steering Group Meeting

Held on Wednesday 27 November 2019 6.00pm

Club Room, Newton St Cyres Parish Hall


Present:           Roger Cashmore (chair), Jane Hole and five members of public

Alison Ward and Steve Watson (Wessex), Andrew Wiles (Brampford Speke and Cowley CLT) 

Apologies:       From two members of public 

  1. Welcome and Introductions

Introductions were made and everyone gave brief explanation for their interest in the CLT 

  1. Old School Site – update on Housing Association interest

Roger reported that the Parish Council had been approached by a housing association who were interested in purchasing the old school site and he and the Chair of the Parish Council had held an initial meeting with the housing association.

  1. Update on application from NSC Parish Council to list old school site as an asset of Community Value

Roger reported that the Parish Council application to have the old school site listed as an asset of community value had been declined by MDDC.  The decision was currently being challenged by Graeme Barnell, ward councillor and the Parish Council

The old school site now had a closing date for bids to be submitted by 10 December 

  1. The purpose of a CLT steering group

It was noted that a CLT could be used for a variety of projects and not just housing.  For example, the shop project, bulk energy buying, broadband etc.

Alison explained that the steering group is the driving force and should be set up sooner rather than later, thus allowing a bank account to be opened and grant funding obtained. Consideration would then be given to whether to work with the existing local CLT or to set up our own.  Options for sites could then be explored and the split between rental/shared ownership considered.  Plans would be presented to a community meeting.  It was usual for the steering group to meet monthly at least for the first six months usually for 1.5 hours. The average number of members was about 7

Conflict of interest – to avoid any conflict of interest land owners are not usually part of the CLT Steering Committee

The process of incorporation would be covered in detail at the next meeting

Andrew offered to attend the next meeting to outline proposals for joining with the existing local CLT and then leave the meeting to allow discussion to take place on the preferred way forward.

It was noted that the PC had carried out a Housing survey in 2016 but it may be necessary to repeat this exercise.

Affordable housing built by a Housing Association at the old school site would solve NSC housing needs as long as priority was given to parishioners and not just those at the top of the MDDC housing register

If the local plan is adopted (hopefully by Spring) any housing in this parish would have to be social housing as the local plan does not allow for any further commercial development. 

  1. Next Steps

Wait and see who buys the old school site - Roger to find out when the decision will be announced as to who has brought the old school site

Keep liaising with the housing association

Parish Council to consider a new housing survey

Keep liaising with County Council

Encourage parishioners who require affordable housing to register with Devon Home Choice 

  1. Update Since the meeting

Enquiries made since the meeting by DCC Councillor Margaret Squires now indicate  that the current process is not a formal tender process but only to receive Expressions of Interest from the market.  It also shows that the DCC has yet to receive permission to sell the site from the secretary of State.  At the time of writing there is no indication of how this news will impact on the process or timing. 

  1. Date of next meeting

Wednesday 29 January 7pm, Parish Hall, Club Room



Summary Report produced by Wessex Community Asset Trust



View a Presentation by Wessex Community Asset Trust that was made to the Parish Council in September 2019

An Information leaflet can be viewed here