As builders lay the foundation stones for 18 new homes in Duloe, the organisation behind the project says community-led schemes are the best way of making sure affordable homes are genuinely affordable and safeguard local communities.

Cornwall Community Land Trust (CCLT), one of the most active CLT’s in the country, is leading the scheme to build the houses at Jubilee Close, in Duloe.

Ten of the homes will be for shared ownership and a further eight for affordable rent. The two and three bedroom homes, which are due to be completed by January 2019, will be available only to people from Duloe or with a strong connection to the local area.

Helen Downing, development manager of the CCLT has been overseeing the project. She said: “There’s been much talk of housing in the budget but many Cornish residents remain totally priced out of the market.

“One of the best ways to combat the housing crisis in Cornwall is by communities taking house building into their own hands. Our trust works with locals to secure the land, the funding and the building of homes. The homes are then rented below the market rent or bought at a genuinely affordable price, an importantly can only be sold at a below-market value to local first-time buyers.”

In Cornwall ‘affordable housing’ is more often than not delivered as a small proportion of homes shoehorned into a larger housing scheme as part of the developer’s obligations to meet planning guidelines. But at Duloe, the CCLT is working in partnership with the Aster Group, a developer with a strong sense of corporate social responsibility to build high quality family houses.

The trust has set itself a target build at least 50 homes in Cornwall every year by 2020 and director Andrew George is confident it can achieve this aim. He said: “Nationally there are now 225 CLTs, 800 homes have been built and there are another 4,500 in the pipeline.

“Cornwall has been and will continue to become of the most successful places in the UK for Community-led homes. The regional and national support infrastructure is starting to grow across the country and I am ambitious for what this sector can be in Cornwall.

“I foresee this type of community led housing emerging from being a ‘niche’ market into a mainstream option to quality affordable build homes and safeguard our local communities.”