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Dorset cohousing scheme receives funding for low-carbon heating

A community-led affordable housing scheme in Bridport, Dorset, is to be fitted with environmentally friendly air source heat pumps.

It follows approval for a £40,000 grant to project partner and South-West based charitable housing association BCHA, the Bournemouth Churches Housing Association. 

The money, from Low Carbon Dorset and the European Regional Development Fund, will be used to install pumps at Hazelmead, a sustainable scheme of 54 eco homes currently being built near Bridport Community Hospital and due to be available for purchase or rent from summer 2022.

Air source heat pumps will offer an efficient, low-carbon approach to heating and providing hot water in the homes. 

BCHA’s Head of Development Colin Salisman said: “Low-carbon homes such as at Hazelmead can play a significant role in helping to tackle climate change.

“Air source heat pumps support this by using and processing a natural source of clean energy in a way that lowers emissions.”

Hazelmead has been designed as a ‘cohousing neighbourhood’ in which the community works together on activities such as gardening and cooking. Residents are required to contribute an agreed number of their time per week.

The 54 units comprise 39 self-contained homes under development for BCHA ,14 for Bridport Cohousing and one common house offering a shared community space. 

BCHA are responsible for 14 one-bedroom flats on the scheme, eight of which are for social rent and six for shared ownership.

The charitable association will also manage 25 houses. Eighteen of these are for social rent with seven for shared ownership.

Of the social rent houses, 13 will have two bedrooms and five will have three bedrooms. 

The seven shared ownership houses comprise two of two bedrooms, three of three bedrooms and two of four bedrooms.

The 14 properties for Bridport Cohousing are all shared ownership. Eight have two bedrooms, five have three bedrooms and one has four bedrooms. 

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