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Croydon Council Commits to Community Land Trust

In a meeting with Croydon Citizens, local branch of national community organising charity Citizens UK, leader of Croydon Council Cllr Tony Newman committed to building community land trust homes in the borough.

Community Land Trusts (CLTs) are a novel way to provide permanently and genuinely affordable housing. Instead of being sold at the market rate, homes are priced according to what is affordable on average incomes in the local area. If the homes are sold on, they are sold at the same formula meaning that the homes are permanently affordable.

Canon Joyce Forbes from St Stephen’s Church, Norbury and a leader in Croydon Citizens said “This is fantastic news for Croydon. As more and more families find it impossible to afford to live in our borough, it’s easy to lose hope. CLTs can give people a vision that goes beyond owning their own keys – it’s about fairness, opportunity and community.”

At the meeting leaders from Croydon Citizens delivered a wendy house made at Thomas More Catholic School and a petition with more than 600 signatures calling for a CLT in Croydon to Cllr Newman.

Maxine Alleyne-Pacheco, a student at Thomas More Catholic School and a leader in Croydon Citizens said “I think our campaign for a CLT is a great opportunity for young people to make a change on an issue that affects our future and the future of the generations to come.”

The commitment comes after more than a year of campaigning by Croydon Citizens who are hoping to build on the success of the first community land trust homes in London which will be completed in Mile End later this year.

Leader of the council Cllr Tony Newman said “It’s quite clear that with a housing crisis in Croydon a community land trust has a vital role to play in actually delivering affordable homes for local people.”

Citizens UK members in London, including Croydon Citizens, have this month launched a Housing Manifesto for London that it will use to negotiate with each of the leading London Mayoral Election candidates in the lead up to the May 2016 elections.

Across London, Citizens has 220 communities in membership reaching over 350,000 Londoners, and since July 2015, tens of thousands of people across London Citizens’ member institutions have been listening to one another about how London’s housing crisis is affecting their lives. These conversations helped build the Housing Manifesto for London which tackles the three issues London Citizens members raised time and again.

Affordability – the cost of a home in London is simply too much Bad landlords in the private rented sector Lack of control over local developments and regeneration projects

London Citizens members have been sharing the reality of the capital’s housing crisis, and hope that by speaking out the board members and politicians will realise the impact their policies have on Londoners struggling to get access to decent housing.

The asks included in the London Citizens Housing Manifesto 2016 will be put to London Mayoral candidates Zac Goldsmith and Sadiq Khan at a 6,000 people London Citizens Assembly on 28th April at The Copper Box Arena. Citizens UK has previously hosted London Mayoral assemblies and national General Election assemblies attracting Prime Ministerial candidates from the main political parties.

Posted on 18 Feb, 2016