I have lived and worked in NW3 for over 25 years. In NW3 I'm at home. But with house prices growing exponentially and only a handful of affordable flats built in recent years, it has become impossible for many people and, in particular key workers, to settle here. People who have called it home, worked here or have some other connection with this amazing place are also being excluded.
The London Borough of Camden is under financial pressure and is trying to balance the books by selling off our assets for exclusive residential developments. This short term gain is reducing the long term viability of the area. We don’t want NW3 to be just the cash cow for the rest of Camden.
In the last five years we have lost well over 100 affordable units – Nurses Home in New End, Westfield Student Accommodation in Kiddepore Avenue, Hyelm Student Hostel in Fitzjohn's Avenue Sheltered Housing in Wells Court, Oriel Place, Branch Hill. They were all sold on the open market to make way for luxury developments.
At the same time, Right to Buy, which all Social Housing and Housing Association tenants can exercise, is depleting the affordable stock in the area even further. We need to take action to counteract this trend.
Following advice from the National CLT Network, and other CLTs around the country who are already doing this, we have set up the NW3 Community Land Trust. NW3 CLT is incorporated as a Community Benefit Society, aiming to create affordable housing solutions in our neighbourhood.
Sadiq Khan has promised to help build 1,000 CLT homes as part of his Mayoral election pledge, DCLG has pledged £60m for community housing. Other social impact investors have set up specific funds to help CLTs across the country. We are joining a growing movement that aims to take back control of our communities.
But we can only do this if we do it together.
We need your membership in order to make our voice carry further, to halt the loss of affordable housing and ultimately to help reach the investment needed to fulfill our aims. Together we can build an organisation that is led and owned by the community. Please join us by becoming a member today.
Sanya Polescuk, Founding Member
We are a North London Community Land Trust, a not-for-profit organisation concerned with provision of affordable and key workers housing in NW3 and adjoining postcodes. We want to help maintain a socially mixed and culturally diverse neighbourhood that NW3 has always been.
Community Land Trusts (CLTs) are a form of community-led housing, local organisations set up and run by ordinary people to develop and manage homes as well as other assets important to that community, like community enterprises, food growing or workspaces. At housing, a CLT’s main task is to make sure that homes are genuinely affordable, based on what people actually earn in their area, not just for now but for every future occupier.
We work on identifying and appraising unused and underused Council-owned or privately and publically owned properties in NW3 and adjoining postcodes with the view to develop them in a way which maximises affordable housing. We aim to retain and reuse as much of the building as possible, removing only the inferior architectural features in order to maximise the capacity for housing. Our Previous Campaigns.
We raise awareness about the erosion of affordable housing stock in our area of high value properties and about the growing need to provide such housing in order to sustain an integrated yet diverse community - something NW3 has historically been but which is now endangered. We lobby the Council about this.
We look to fund projects through a combination of private and public investment and grants, in partnership with commercial developers and registered housing providers. We look to partner with them in projects' development or running or both.
As members of the National CLT Network we are on top of and seeking to influence developments in national housing policies. We work with Voluntary Action Camden, the Hampstead Neighbourhood Forum and via local newspapers, and London TV stations, reinforce approaches to our local MP and Camden Councillors holding Housing and Property Disposal portfolios.
Join us if you want to see a strong, diverse and resilient community in our neighbourhood. Whatever reason you have individually, you should become a member.
• Be first to hear about new affordable housing opportunities; maybe your children might want to live here.
• Apply for an affordable flat - see Allocation criteria.
• Become part of movement for a better, more inclusive Camden.
• Network with likeminded individuals.
• Recruit locally with reduced time and cost of commuting.
• Demonstrate to your employees a real commitment to their opportunities.
• Help stability for families wanting to make NW3 their home.
NW3CLT members who live or work in NW3 and surrounding areas in the London borough of Camden and whose household income does not exceed £90,000 pa (Funding Guidance: Affordable Homes for Londoners 2016-2021 from London Major, Nov 2016).
Who have scored points based on the following ranking:
- Commitment to the NW3CLT work (attendance and contribution at meetings).
- Commitment and duration of involvement with the project.
- Measure of the housing need.
Barbara Orlando is an experienced City executive living locally with her young family.
Josephine Field lives locally and has a degree in Social Policies from the LSE. She currently works at a Local Authority as a Housing Strategy and Policy Officer.
Dr Silvie Jacobi is a geographer and cultural researcher interested in art schools, creative economy and urban regeneration. Silvie is also a co-founder of London School of Mosaic situated in NW3.
Wu Gang lives in the area with his family and has a background in finance.
Jamie Jensen is a writer, editor and public space advocate.
Will Coles is a PhD candidate and an Academic Tutor at the University of London. He lives in NW3 and has campaigned for more affordable housing in the area for some time. He is also involved in a number of local organisations in the Hampstead and Belsize area.
All members of the team work on voluntary basis and receive no remuneration.