“Larkrise Co-housing is an intentional community nurturing collaborative living; creating positive change for people and planet”
Larkrise is a community led co-housing development in a Herefordshire village.
Operating as a not for profit co-operative organisation mutually owned and run by consensus.
Investing in a solutions led response to the housing, economic and climate crises.
To build and maintain an intentional community environment balancing individual autonomy and collective needs.
To nurture fulfilling and sustainable lifestyles in collaboration with our residents and all others who identify with and share Larkrise’ values.
Creating a living legacy within the earth’s resources for future generations.
- Conscious Community – We have a commitment to deeply knowing, supporting, respecting and caring for each other and ourselves through active listening ensuring each individual is seen, heard and met as they are, We recognise that building a community is an ongoing process requiring flexibility and openness to change.
- Diversity – We welcome diversity knowing that a culture that values talents and skill sets over power and status cultivates a fertile environment for community and personal growth.
- Stewardship– We aim to live lightly on the earth with gratitude seeking to utilise both traditional and modern methods of efficient and low-impact living.
- Mutual prosperity – We believe in prosperity for the common good and that investing in the community enables all involved to thrive from it. We aspire to extend this out to and integrate with the wider community in as many forms as possible.
- Sanctuary – Through self responsibility we are committed to creating a stable and strong infrastructure that can support the collective over time ensuring a safe space for future generations
- Build housing that is affordable and sustainable
- Build a community culture that is accountable and intentional
- Design educational opportunities for members and the wider community about sustainable practices
- Provide community assets – improved pedestrian access on highway, recreational ground, home/work environments
Larkrise is situated in the village of Much Birch. It is in a rural setting with views over the country side. It has access to many essential local amenities. The local GP, community centre, shops, pubs, hotel, churches and 2 local schools. There are 2 main bus routes that run near the site. The city of Hereford is a short distance away as are the towns of Ross-on Wye and Monmouth. It is in easy reach of the M50, A40 and M4.
The site itself is connected with an existing settlement of houses. Access to the site will be via the road at the bottom of the existing residential area.
The plan adds to the existing residential area by providing parking spaces and reinstating and extending the once well used play area for recreation. There is parking on site for the residents and guests of Larkrise. Including spaces for bikes and electric vehicle charging points. The roads through the site are primarily for pedestrian access and the vehicles shall for the most part remain at the parking at the bottom of the site. The plan consists of 20 dwellings of 1 or 2 bed flats and 2, 3 or 4 bed terraced and semi-detached houses. The landscaping provides communal productive gardens, wildflower meadow, and a community building to house and support the co-housing ethos and aspect of the Larkrise development. The houses are set to be have high ecological standards achieving very low energy consumption for its users and whole life carbon efficiency.
Mutual Home Ownership
Larkrise is working to develop the Mutual Home Ownership Society model. This model of ownership has been well demonstrated already in a number of projects across the UK. Most notably at LILAC in Leeds.
Simply put Mutual Home Ownership is a way for housing to remain affordable in perpetuity. The houses are held within the co-operative and are never released on to the open market.
Larkrise owns the land and the property and holds a communal mortgage. The houses are valued based on their development costs and the local average income. Each resident member has an occupancy agreement by which they contribute to the communal mortgage. The monthly contributions are based on a percentage of each the households net income. For some of the occupancy options members can build up equity with their payments which, in most situations, they can release from the scheme in line with prescribed exit points. The model is still in construction but we are optimistic that there will be 4 options for occupancy including 2 equity building options and 2 rental options (no equity raised). These are based on detailed financial information taken during the application process.