Naked House encouraged us to seek out Peter George, Head of the Regeneration team at Enfield. He was a pioneering and visionary leader, although very busy. Perhaps we could make contact and look to do something on a smaller scale as a self build community initiative?
The benefit of having a similar narrative, Stephen said, was that decision makers feel more comfortable working with ideas that have already been given official political endorsement.
Stephen suggested we work up an outline viability appraisal for the site and our priority should be to establish with both landowners the basis on which they would engage with us directly, and still satisfy their legal requirements to obtain the ‘best consideration reasonably obtainable’.
This does not mean that either the Council or the Church had to achieve ‘best price’. “The church as a charity can use its land to achieve its ministry objectives,” Stephen said, “and the Archbishop’s pronouncement [in 2017]that the church should use its land holdings to promote affordable housing, should be helpful to us.”
Here lay our next challenge: could we find a way of presenting to the church and council that ‘best consideration reasonably obtainable’ for their site was not the highest price but a local community led initiative supporting the local area and local church?