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Digital Subscriptions > Build It > January 2017 > Designing a collective self build

Designing a collective self build

There are many challenges along the route to building your own home, but one way to increase your chances of succeeding is to band together with like-minded people and tackle a collective project
The Ashley Vale collective self build venture was born in the late 1990s out of a local desire to stop a piece of land being developed into 35 properties by a volume housebuilder. An action group was formed to offer the opportunity for local people to construct their own homes on the Bristol site instead. They set up a not-for-profit limited company and raised the money to buy the site. The original plan involved 20 individual self builds and six housing association dwellings. However, the association involved later dropped out of the project, so the community group developed these properties instead. Over the course of 10 years, 41 homes have been created

In the UK, a wide variety of groups have successfully united to create new housing – from friends that club together and use their own money to buy land through to larger sites with 50 or 100 plots.

All sorts of people and families become involved in these schemes from every walk of life – they can be well-off or on low incomes, live in the city or countryside, be young or old, and have plenty of building skills or none. But what generally unites them is an enterprising spirit and a capacity to help each other reach a common goal of achieving bespoke housing.

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About Build It

Build It magazine’s January issue is packed with detailed practical advice & inspiring projects to help you create your dream home. Here’s a taster of what’s inside: • Stunning contemporary oak frame home (page 22) • Revealed: your new right to self build (page 62) • The best low-maintenance cladding options (page 69) • Running an air source heat pump (page 80) • Expert guide to gaining planning permission (page 94) • Designing the perfect extension (page 106) … and more!