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Our Project

Our Vision Statement


We aim to create one or more cohousing developments in Berkshire, each of which will give 20 to 40 households of various sizes and age ranges their own self-contained homes, a percentage being housing for rent or part-buy.  Common indoor areas will include kitchen, dining area and lounge for shared meals and socializing. There will also be provision for office and workshop space, potentially small business units for rent, and some common outdoor space.

The development(s) will be managed by the residents using consensus decision making where possible. Whether new-build, renovation or a mix of the two, the architecture and design will facilitate social and environmental sustainability. The location(s) will have good transport connections, and we will foster good relations with, and aim to provide some benefits to, the surrounding community.




Our Group & Members


We are an currently an unincorporated Association called “Cohousing Berkshire”, and have also set up a company to take the first cohousing project forward - this is called Kennet And Thames Cohousing Limited (KATCH for short).  Cohousing Berkshire association will continue as an information body to seed further cohousing projects in the future.


We currently have about 10 core members, and an email group of about 50.  We have a diverse range of people from their 20s to their 60s; people with children, single people, singles with children, and couples.  We have a number of people looking for owner-occupier houses, and some looking for affordable housing.


Cohousing Berkshire has an annual membership fee of £35, which enables us to function, i.e. hire rooms, print leaflets, pay expenses for guest speakers etc.  It also gives the group an element of formality, with agreed ways of working and a shared commitment.  We have a website, and an email group to share information.



Meetings & Social


We meet bimonthly in Reading on a Sunday at someone’s house around lunch time to make it less formal. Ongoing work from sub-groups or individuals feeds into these meetings, where decisions are taken by consensus where possible.  We encourage guest to come along and take part in our meetings, and invite them to become members if they are interested in the project.


Our work and activities


We have been researching cohousing as a group through reading, having guest speakers, and going on visits, for instance to Springhill in Stroud, The Community Project in Sussex, and the Threshold Centre in Dorset.


We have developed a good working relationship with Aster Housing Association, who are keen to get involved in a cohousing project, and have been very helpful in the process.  Where we are bringing the model and a willing group of prospective residents intent, they have a wealth of industry expertise, so we are hoping this will be a winning combination!


All the while we are working closely with the UK Cohousing Network, the main source of information and expertise on cohousing in the UK.  Recently they put on a National Cohousing Conference in London, and we had very inspiring input from two of the main cohousing proponents in the USA, who have set up more than 50 cohousing developments.