A PORTION of land at Station Road in Kemble has been earmarked for affordable housing, following a vote at Cotswold District Council (CDC).

During a cabinet council meeting on February 14, members approved unanimously to fund the investigation of the setting up and running of a Housing Trust to supply affordable housing, in conjunction with Kemble and Ewen Parish Council.

This would make Kemble the first village in the district to set up a Community Land Trust.

The District Council owns the freehold for the site, which has been let to the Parish Council since 2012. Both parties have agreed that a portion of the land should be developed to accommodate eight housing units (subject to planning permission).

After considering several options for the residential development, CDC decided to recommend a community-led approach through a Housing Trust to ensure units are truly affordable.

Cllr Nick Parsons, CDC cabinet member for forward planning, said: “It’s good to know that we are on the way to providing some much needed housing for the local community in Kemble, while also ensuring that the remainder of the land parcel in Station Road will be designated for Local Green Space use.2

He added: “I am confident that we can now move forward with a planning application as soon as practicable.”

Speaking at the meeting, one councillor said: “It is one of our few opportunities to truly deliver affordable housing with government money. We could look at a truly innovative approach.”

Cabinet members agreed that the design would need to reflect the natural green space that surrounded the potential site.

Roger Pettit, chairman of Kemble and Ewen Parish Council said: “Encouraging progress has been achieved through working together with the District Council to settle a future for Kemble Community Gardens.

“Their suggestion of a Housing Trust initiative is a further positive step which will enable the Parish Council to have a voice in the management of the affordable housing development in the best interests of our residents.

“In addition, maintaining a substantial undeveloped area to be transferred to our ownership will enable us to continue to offer a community garden and green space for the benefit of all.”