Community Land Trust Rural Urban Synthesis Society (RUSS) has been granted planning permission by Lewisham Council for its development of 33 affordable Custom Build homes in Ladywell, Lewisham, together with a new training facility, the Hub. This will be London’s first training facility for would-be community Custom Builders.
The ‘Hub’ project will offer people the opportunity to get hands-on experience of building, and it will showcase a range of natural building techniques, including timber, straw bale and rammed earth. It will also be available for the local community to use.
RUSS intends to source materials for the Hub locally to support the local economy, and it will use as many reclaimed and recycled materials as possible. In addition, it will include off-grid technologies, such as rain water collection.
Once built, the space will host RUSS’s School of Community-Led Housing with the goal of sharing and inspiring other communities in Self Building and affordable housing projects.
The project involves:
RUSS led a successful crowd funding initiative in 2017 raising a total of £55,000 for the project from more than 300 backers. As part of this the Mayor of London’s initiative, Crowdfund London, donated £30,000 and the Lewisham Assembly provided a grant of £2,500.
Now that planning permission has been granted RUSS will be mobilising its 800+ volunteers so that construction work can begin later in the summer.