South East community creator, Thakeham Group, has commissioned the Plunkett Foundation to establish new community trusts at the very heart of their developments.
A pioneering partnership
The partnership will pioneer a new methodology that will model how to best establish a community trust to create vibrant, resilient and sustainable places to live and work.
Community trusts businesses currently have a 95% long-term survival rate. This proven resilience secures vital local services that bring communities together.
In addition to developing and safeguarding valuable assets and services, community trusts address a range of issues including isolation, loneliness, wellbeing, work and training.
The new collaboration builds on the innovative community trust vision Thakeham is currently delivering at Woodgate in Pease Pottage. Woodgate features plans for a community hub, including Thakeham gifting a shop to a community trust and a café to local hospice St’ Catherine’s Trust.
For Thakeham, Rob Boughton, Chief Executive Officer said:-
“Thakeham understands what it takes to build a thriving new community. Our approach blends investment in community amenities with inspiration for the people who use them.
“It’s a proven formula that echoes the mission of The Plunkett Foundation. That’s why it was so important for us to become members. We believe that we can collaborate to shape a better future for cohesive communities.
“The community trust model will be used to create truly sustainable and vibrant community hubs including the perfect mix of retail, café, meeting rooms, co-working facilities, allotments and accessible green spaces.”
Support for Community Trust business
The Plunkett Foundation is a national charity supporting community trust businesses. To date, the charity has supported over 600 community trust businesses from inception to reaching trading status.
The Plunkett Foundation defines community trust businesses as enterprises that are owned and run democratically by members of the community, on behalf of the community. They come in many forms, including shops, pubs, woodlands and anything that lends itself to community ownership.
James Alcock, Plunkett Foundation Chief Executive, said:-
“Creating opportunities for people to meet and socialise is at the heart of creating a thriving community. Community businesses do just this whilst providing vital services and facilities for local residents, such as shops and meeting spaces.
“Plunkett are proud to be working alongside Thakeham Group to embed community trust businesses into the centre of their developments making them vibrant and sustainable places to live and work.
“By bringing community members together, whether that is through volunteering, or simply as a regular customer and enjoying a coffee and chat, community trust businesses improve health and wellbeing whilst putting local people in control of the assets and services that matter the most.”
The partnership will also see Thakeham become headline sponsor of the Plunkett Foundation’s ‘Lockdown Stories’ campaign. The sponsorship agreement will see Thakeham play an active filmed role in the campaign. They will also help judge the foundation’s ‘Community Contribution’ award.