NEWS AND EVENTS

THE LATEST

2021 Annual General Meeting - new date

The 2021 Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Beer Community Land Trust will now be held on Tuesday 3 August nat 7pm in Mariners' Hall.

Government guidelines for COVID-19 will apply and the number of attendees permitted may be limited.

If you have any questions​​ for the AGM or Beer Community Land Trust in general, please email g.pook@outlook.com

The Social Club Build - Project Update 19 May 2021

 

Those people passing by will have no doubt noticed “not a lot” happening on the Social Club site. Well, a lot has been happening, just not very visibly.  The big issue we have had to overcome is supporting Berry Lane, especially at the top end where there is a drop in the region of 5m.  In a nutshell, we have had to design support for the road and this has included testing and surveying including the utilities in the road.  The design has now been agreed with DCC and the piling work is programmed to start on July 12.  We had hoped to start earlier, however the delays in finalising the design meant we lost our site slot with the specialist contractor.  We knew the retaining wall would be our biggest technical issue and unfortunately one we could not finalise until after the demolition gave full access to assess the site conditions.  We are pleased now that this has been sorted out and the works can continue.

 

The demolition is substantially complete: the roof has been left on the top building to give weather protection to the slope since it’s been covered up for many years.  The new retaining wall will be made from large steel columns placed in holes drilled on-site and concreted in.  The gaps between the columns will be closed with reinforced concrete planks.  The work is very specialised and made more difficult by the very tight site.  The pile holes will be drilled and require an array of equipment on site.  Altogether it should be a very interesting few weeks in July and we ask for your forbearance while it is going on and throughout the build.

 

While it’s not been possible to do much other site work while waiting for the retaining wall to be completed, other planning works have gone ahead and the electricity and water supplies finalised.

 

Given a fair wind and weather, etc, we are now programming completion for end of Feb 2022 and would hope to have occupation by April 2022.  Six months before completion we will start the allocation process.  Those people wanting one of the 3 rental units must make sure they are on the Devon Home Choice system.  This will be used to confirm housing need eligibility but will also comply with the CLT allocation policy which requires applicants to have a “Beer Connection”.  Those people wanting one of the shared-ownership homes should contact the CLT or Geoff Pook direct for advice on how to apply.  Please do not contact the CLT before September 2021.

 

CLT Annual Meeting 2021 and management - Updated 19 May 2021

 

In the next week the CLT will be announcing the date of the AGM in late June or early July.  The AGM is an opportunity for existing members and new members to come along and ask the Board any questions. It is also the opportunity to propose new board members and officers.

 

This year we hope to encourage new members to join the CLT and the Board. We are especially keen for people with financial, legal and administrative experience to join the Board.  To date the administration of the CLT's affairs has been undertaken by volunteers: however, we are now looking to appoint a paid position of Administrator to look after the statutory affairs of the CLT.  Anyone interested should please contact Geoff Pook or any Board member or just come to the AGM and chat it through.

CLT Housing Allocation - 6 October 2020

When Beer CLT has vacancies we will advertise them on this site and through EDDC Devon Home Choice.  The allocation process should be completed within eight weeks from when it starts.  There are currently no vacancies, and the November 2019 allocation was fulfilled in February 2020.

Social Club Site - Project Update 5 October 2020

First work on the site has begun, clearing the vegetation and finding the buildings. Check the "Old Social Club Site" page for photos of progress.

Social Club Site - Project Update 29 September 2020

The final preparations are now being made before demolition, and then construction can start.

We received conditional planning permission in July and, having finalised the S106 agreement, we have now been granted full planning permission.  This has enabled us to apply for our licence from Natural England to work in the vicinity of a bat roost and relocate bats if necessary.

We have also now received our CIL exemption certificate recognising that 100% of the housing that we will be providing is classed as affordable.

With the full planning permission and CIL exemption in place, we can now start “soft” demolition and work at the skittle alley end.  Full demolition has to wait until we have the bat licence.

The S106 agreement specifies the number of affordable properties and the allocation rules.  We will develop 3 units for affordable rental - 2 houses and 1 flat.  There will also be 2 houses and 1 flat offered on a shared-equity basis.  All units will be offered on a priority basis to people with a local connection.  Full allocation conditions will be put on the CLT web site in the near future.  Homes should be available in October 2021 with allocation proceeding in July 2021.

Another milestone has been achieved in the naming of the houses.  We had to decide on a name so we could progress the utility applications. The Board considered several options:

 1 - The Old Club 1-6

 2 - The Old Club 1-4 for the upper site and Jack Burrough House 1-2

 3 - Clinton House 1-2 for the first block, The Old Club 1-2 for the middle block, and Jack Burrough House 1-2 for the two flats.

Option 2 was the majority choice.  “The Old Club “ is an obvious name, but many people may not know that the land for the skittle alley was given to the club by Jack Burrough in the 1970s.

We have also had interviews with potential contractors, following a tendering process, and have awarded the contract to N J Whittaker Ltd of Honiton, who showed capability, resource and experience in projects of a similar size and complexity.  They will now work closely with our architects NDM Collins to finalise the detailed design.

Action will start on the site in the very near future.

Planning permission granted - 22 July 2020

 

At a meeting of its Planning Committee on 22 July 2020, East Devon District Council (EDDC) has granted planning permission for the redevelopment of the Beer Social Club.  This means that Beer Community Land Trust can now go into the build phase, with an anticipated completion date in September 2021.

 

Planning permission is conditional on completion of the S106 agreement that sets out how many of the homes will be classed as "affordable".  EDDC policy for a village site of this size is that 50% should be "affordable".  However, Beer CLT will surpass this and 100% will be "affordable" homes, with 3 affordable rental homes and 3 shared equity homes.  All of the homes will be subject to a local allocation policy, as with the first Beer CLT development at Little Hemphay, requiring all residents to have a stated local Beer connection as well as a degree of housing need.

 

The design of the scheme has changed from the initial concept back in 2018.  The initial plan was for  a long continuous block with a staggered roof line, and 7 homes.  After consideration, the district planners felt that this scheme was too dense for the site, that the houses needed to be set back from the road to give safer pedestrian access, and that a block of 3 flats planned at the southern end was too high and would impact negatively on adjacent houses.  The plan is therefore now for 6 homes.    Another design change has been to align the roof ridges parallel to the road, as opposed to perpendicular as in the first design.  The reason for the initial design was to allow views through the houses from behind: however, the district planners considered the parallel ridge form to be more in keeping with the style and character of Beer.

 

The scheme now consists of three individual buildings: the two upper buildings be two pairs of semi-detached houses with a lower-end building containing two flats.  The overall external appearance will be that of contemporary cottages, with rendered walls, slate roofs and substantial faces of traditional stone walling.  Because of the steep slope of the upper part of the site, the two upper buildings will each be 3 stories but have the appearance of 2 stories from the road.  The lower building will be 2 stories with a single flat on each storey, each with level access.  Each of the homes will be approximately 90 square metres with 2 bedrooms.  They will all have central heating and be designed for high energy-efficiency.  Each home will have a designated parking space.  Since the original purchase of the Beer Social Club site, Beer CLT has also purchased the ends of adjacent gardens to increase the amount of outside amenity space.

 

Development finance, primarily a loan from EDDC, is now in place and Homes England has committed to significant grant funding.  This however requires the spend to be completed by September 2021, giving us a tight timescale as a result of the Covid delays.

 

The outline programme, subject to receipt of our final bat movement licence from Natural England, is to start demolition work by late August 2020 and start construction by the end of November 2020.  Because of the tight timescale we have decided to use a hybrid negotiated contract process to enable the appointed contractor to participate in the detailed design process and to allow design-efficiency and build-efficiency suggestions to be incorporated in the final design.  Our selected architects, NDM Collins, will still control the design but the overall process will be far more collaborative.

 

We are currently engaging with three local contractors and are inviting them to submit proposals based on indicative budget, capacity to deliver within the required time scale and statement of experience on similar projects, including management structure, resources and financial background.  We hope to have our selection confirmed in the next few weeks.

 

Anyone interested in applying for rental or shared ownership units should contact Beer CLT next year, probably around March 2021, when we will have a public meeting and explain the allocation process.  There will be plenty of advertising beforehand to try to ensure that everyone interested knows what to do in order to apply.  The Initial allocation will be through the Devon Home Choice system, so all applicants should ensure that they are registered with Devon Home Choice as early as possible.  The final allocation decision will be made by the Beer CLT allocation board using the Beer CLT allocation policy.

 

Progress will be reported on the web site so please check to see how we are doing.

 

Vacancy coming up - house for rent in Beer - 2019

A 2-bedroom house will be coming available for rent in mid-December 2019 or early-2020 on the Beer CLT's Little Hemphay development.  It has an open-plan sitting room/dining room/fitted kitchen, gas hob, electric oven, 2 bedrooms, downstairs toilet and upstairs shower/bath/toilet.  It has gas heating (underfloor downstairs) and solar panels on the roof giving cheaper electric costs.  1 parking space plus small back yard with shed.  Current rent is £580.40 per month

Applicants must be registered with Devon Home Choice and with EDDC.

(NOTE:  this house was allocated in early-2020)

Public Consultation in connection with Proposed Community Affordable Housing - 21 October 2019

A Public Consultation into the Change of Use of the Old Beer Social Club with employment to Community Affordable Housing was carried out between 9 September 2019 to 27 September 2019.  This included a Public Open Day in  Mariners' Hall on 21 September 2019.
The results of this consultation are available on the "Consultation" page of this web site. As a result of this consultation a request for full planning permission was submitted on 21 October 2019.  A clearance company has also been used and nearly all of the contents and furniture have been removed from the Social Club site.  Once planning permission has been given, demolition work will start.

​​New site opened up and clear-out planned - 2019

The Social Club site has now been opened up at the southern end to include the garden land that has been purchased by the CLT.  New fences have been installed, and the plot is already looking much bigger than it did before.

There will be a final clear-out of everything from inside the old Social Club in late June.  This will be open to all comers to take what they want, and hopefully also to leave a relevant donation to the CLT.

The internal work on asbestos removal from the old clubhouse will begin in July, and no access to the premises will be allowed once this has started.

Social Club site - demolition work delayed - 2019

It had been hoped that demolition work could start on the Social Club site early in 2019.  However, due to the discovery of nesting bats on the site, demolition work has been put on hold.  Bats would normally emerge from hibernation in late spring/early summer, so now the first stage of a Bat Emergence Survey has beens completed with a second stage to follow in June 2019.  Further action is dependent on the results of this survey.

Beer CLT Investment Fund - 2019

Beer CLT is working towards launching an Investment Fund that will allow investors to contribute towards the provision of affordable homes for people in and connected to the local community while at the same time providing a return on investment for those investors.

NEXT MEETING

To be announced

AGM

The 2019 AGM was held on Thursday 1 August, at 7pm in the Balcony Room, Mariners' Hall.

ANNUAL REPORTS

The Beer CLT financial year runs from 1st August to 31st July.

Annual Reports can be downloaded below:

2018-2019 Annual Report

2017-2018 Annual Report

2016-2017 Annual Report

2015-2016 Annual Report

2014-2015 Annual Report

2013-2014 Annual Report