Affordable Housing Commission
"I am delighted to welcome this very significant contribution to the debate: brilliant to see the Church of England leadership engaging with one of the biggest challenges facing our society – one that is at the heart of the inequalities, poverty and hardship facing so many of our fellow citizens – with clear proposals for the Church, as well as the usual suspects, to achieve the affordable homes this country so desperately needs."
Lord Richard Best, Chair
Andrew Selous MP
"I very strongly support the recommendations that the Church Commissioners should enable more affordable, sustainable and beautiful homes to be built on their land. The unaffordability of housing is one of the main causes of poverty and I believe the Church Commissioners could help the current housing crisis while, potentially, increasing the long-term value of their holdings for future generations, as the Duchy of Cornwall have managed to do."
Andrew Selous, MP and Second Estates Commissioner
Bristol Housing Festival
"As an organisation working with others to enable systemic change to help end our housing crisis, we welcome this report and its recommendations. The Commissioners have not claimed to have all the answers, but have sought to thoroughly consider the current issues that prevail in our society’s housing and invite all of us to consider our role in being part of the solution. This is an excellent and important report that we hope will deeply inspire and enthuse those in the Church of England and far beyond. The challenges and complexities of our housing crisis are broad and deep - in response, our purpose and determination to work together must be equally broad and deep. This report provides a framework within which to mobilise that shared vision and collective purpose."
Jez Sweetland, Project Director
“We warmly welcome the publication of the Coming Home report which sets out the Commission’s vision of a holistic, long-term strategy linking housing, community and The Church to tackle the UK’s housing crisis. With our long term commitment to the affordable housing sector and the delivery of 'finance with purpose', Centrus is pleased to endorse the Commission's work. We believe it will have a positive, lasting impact on communities across the UK.”
Phil Jenkins, Managing Director
Chartered Institute of Housing
"The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of good quality, safe, affordable, spacious homes with access to safe greenspace to enable individuals and families to live, work, learn, rest and play - yet we know too many people lack a decent, safe, secure and affordable home. We can and should be aspiring to create better homes for our communities. The recommendations in Coming Home give us a clear and useful roadmap to help us get to where we need to. We must build many more genuinely affordable homes than we are currently building, but we also need to make sure that our existing housing stock is in a safe and good condition to be certain these homes are fit for the future. A long-term housing strategy backed by realistic help with housing costs for people on low incomes is integral to ensuring that every individual in every community has a place to call home."
Gavin Smart, Chief Executive
“The Church Commissioners welcome this landmark study of the UK’s housing crisis from the Housing Commission, which comes at a critical time for the nation, when so many people are struggling with inadequate homes and living conditions in an environment worsened by the pandemic.”
Loretta Minghella, First Church Estates Commissioner
Church Urban Fund
"Every person has faced unprecedented impact from the pandemic – but none more so than those who were already experiencing enormous challenges prior to the arrival of Covid-19. As such, we are excited by the new vision set out in this report, the timeliness of its release, the cross-sector responses we hope it will inspire and the lives that will change. We fully endorse and support the much-needed step-change set out in the Commission’s proposals, coupled with other church-based initiatives aimed at building community that are happening across the country. We look forward to exploring ways in which CUF can collaborate with those involved in the report to ensure that the material, emotional and spiritual needs of our most marginalised neighbours are met and all are able to live flourishing lives – as Christ intended."
Rachel Whittington, Executive Director
Churches Together in England
"As we anticipate emerging from the Covid crisis, the hope is that we will 'build better’, with a society embodying greater equality and fairness as a lasting legacy. Already health professionals are speaking of a greater sense of mutual support amongst staff, forged in the fire of the unrelenting pressures of caring for the most seriously ill with Covid-19. Now is the time to build a similar sense of solidarity across every aspect of society in addressing the housing crisis — a crisis not only for those who are homeless, but for the many who live in inadequate housing. A century ago we built ‘homes fit for heroes’; now in the twenty-first century, we need to build homes fit for every citizen to live in. This report, Coming Home, not only identifies the inadequacies and inequities, but calls for a new partnership between government, churches, landlords and institutions to "create homes and communities that are sustainable, safe, stable, sociable and satisfying for all”. It recognises that to achieve this and resolve the housing crisis the costs must be shared more evenly: and that takes us to the heart of the gospel, and its demand that we repent and seek forgiveness. With a change of heart and changes in policy, I have hope for the future of housing in England, with the Church leading the way."
Rev Dr. Paul Goodliff, General Secretary
"For millions of people, this pandemic has been made all the worse for living in homes that are poor quality, overcrowded and unaffordable. It has driven up infection rates and made lockdown so much harder for families with children stuck at home. This Coming Home report provides an urgent and clear call for change from the Church of England. It combines the strong moral voice of faith with real commitment as a landowner, and Citizens UK looks forward to working together to make these vital recommendations happen."
Matthew Bolton, Executive Director
“Where we live has a measurable effect on our physical and mental health: on how much we walk, on how many neighbours we know or on how tense we feel on the quotidian journey to work or school. Design affects us from the air we breathe to our ultimate sense of purpose and wellbeing. Over recent generations, far too few landowners, designers or developers have created places that are good for us. It is marvellous to see the Church of England’s important new report, Coming Home, setting out a vision for how Church land can be better used not just to build units but to create beautiful homes and places in which the heart can soar and the body feel secure. I hugely look forward to seeing the evolution of their strategy.”
Nicholas Boys Smith, Director
English Rural Housing Association
“Everyone deserves a safe, warm and affordable home to live in. The work and findings of the Commission are both timely and welcome given the economic and social crisis we face, with the need for more housing being central to addressing this. Housing associations, especially those with a strong community focus such as English Rural, have values closely aligned with the Commission – with the supply of the right land in the right place, they can play an important partnership role in delivering affordable homes, societal change and improved fairness for all.”
Martin Collett, Chief Executive
“Coming Home is a ground-breaking report taking an urgently needed look beyond the numbers game that has come to dominate the housing debate, to consider what can be done to deliver genuinely affordable homes, and communities that support people’s mental and physical wellbeing. This is a brave exercise in every way and couldn’t come at a more timely moment.”
Gail Mayhew, Commissioner, Building Better Building Beautiful Report, Co-Founder of The Stewardship Initiative and Principal at Smart Growth Associate
"At Goscombe we believe that housing affordability, accessibility, and sustainability are key to the flourishing of community and the stability of our society. The 5 values contained within the Archbishops Coming Home report concur with Goscombe’s experience as a provider of social and affordable homes and are as necessary now as they might ever have been. We’re excited to see how this report could stimulate the creation of a number of new partnerships who are prepared to look at housing through a completely different lens."
Tim Earey, Director
“The Grenfell community have received much succour from our local faith groups in the aftermath of the tragic fire. These faith groups have completely understood our pain and our needs and responded accordingly. Now the Archbishop of Canterbury has gone further and produced a template for housing that clearly identifies the changes that need to be made by this sector in the aftermath of Grenfell. We hope the Government will take these findings on board and commit to their long-term implementation”.
"We welcome The Archbishop’s Housing Commission report ‘Coming Home’. At Home Group we mirror the holistic view that bricks and mortar alone, do not make for a home and the last year has highlighted the need for a comfortable home more than ever."
Joe Cook, Executive Director of Development
“Housing Justice strongly supports the extensive work of the commission and the excellent report they have produced. The pandemic and the tragedy it has brought about increases the impetus to address the structural problems facing our society. The lack of enough homes which are sustainable, safe, stable, sociable and satisfying prevents strong communities being formed. There is a high risk that those who we have relied on during the Covid crisis are locked out of Britain’s post-pandemic recovery. For too long the housing crisis in Britain has been someone else’s fault: foreign investors, developers, planners. The commission makes clear that the housing crisis is everyone’s problem and we should all consider our role in solving it, including individual churches and The Church. Through schemes such as our Faith in Affordable Housing project, which already delivers affordable housing on church land each year, Housing Justice looks forward to working with churches, local communities and others to address housing need.”
Kathy Mohan, Chief Executive
Joseph Rowntree Foundation
“Over the past year, Covid and lockdowns have highlighted again the central importance for all of us of having a secure, decent, affordable home, and how badly our housing market is failing to make this a reality for people on low incomes. From the hundreds of thousands of people who have been pulled into rent arrears and now fear eviction and homelessness, to those trapped in overcrowded, damp, unhealthy accommodation, we are seeing the impact of this failure across the UK. High housing costs are a key driver of the unacceptable level of poverty in our country, and we know that building more homes for social rent would ease the pressure on families pulled under by high rents.
“The Commission rightly recognises the role that landowners like the Church can play in supporting the delivery of more truly affordable homes, but there is also, as the Commission notes, an urgent need for Government action on this critical issue. The commitment to Build Back Better must put homes at its heart. We need to see a long-term strategy to boost our supply of truly affordable homes, alongside a strengthened social security system that can keep families afloat in the face of high costs and low pay, and improved security and conditions in the private rented sector.”
Helen Barnard, Director
"This welcome report is distinctive in insisting that all the actors involved in the housing market need to think and act differently if we are to address the crisis and reform the housing sector. There is no quick policy fix nor does the problem lie just with one stakeholder. Instead, a new, long-term resolve is called for, which will only happen if all involved embrace a new vision for homes and communities. This report goes a long way in casting that vision and giving hope for a deep and lasting change in our society."
Jonathan Tame, Executive Director
“Coming Home raises fundamental questions of how land is best used by society. It asks the Church to adopt an ESG framework that assesses the real value of truly affordable housing, not simply its financial value to registered providers. If the true societal impact can be incorporated within viability assessments, green book valuations and the like, then it promises to turn upside down the best consideration arguments run by the Public Sector.
Charlie Dugdale, Partner
“If this can stimulate a reassessment where previously prescribed costs flip into benefit then decisions might start to be made based upon much longer-term outcomes. As a consequence, it seems this report might hold the key to stimulate a solution to the affordability crisis.”
Alistair Elliott, Senior Partner and Group Chairman
"At L&Q we warmly welcome this ambitious report that doesn't under-estimate the significant challenges we all face, while crucially calling for greater collaboration and a focus on the long term"
Matt Corbett, Director L&Q Foundation
Legal & General
“Decent and affordable homes provide the solid basis that people need in order to flourish. Legal & General has committed land, finance, and expertise to this end, because we believe that each of us has a social responsibility to enable this provision. We welcome this report’s recommendations, recognising that both the Church and government have central and valuable roles to play, and look forward to working with both in future.”
Legal & General
"Coming Home is a truly welcome addition to the growing movement for change in our housing system. As a funder with a focus on decent, affordable homes we welcome and amplify the Commission’s calls for a long-term, bold and coherent housing strategy focussing on affordability. Our housing system was designed once, and it can be re-designed; ensuring that everybody has access to homes that support happy and healthy lives."
Leigh Pearce, Chief Executive
National Housing Federation
"Housing associations are proud of their social purpose and deep roots within their communities. We welcome this landmark report which places these values front and centre of the Church’s vision for the future of housing in England. The country and much of the population are in financial crisis, and millions are living in unaffordable, cramped homes. What’s truly exciting is the Commission’s determination for the Church to do its part in ending the housing crisis once and for all by looking at how it can use its land for the development of truly affordable homes. We hope this recommendation encourages other landowners to consider doing something similar and inspires the Government to recognise social housing as fundamental to a society where no one is left behind, and communities thrive. The NHF and our members look forward to working with the Church of England to help make these proposals a reality.”
Kate Henderson, Chief Executive
Office of The Chief Rabbi
"A home should be the bedrock of a life lived with dignity, as well as a springboard for the creation of thriving communities, as the Church of England’s report points out. Working towards an enduring solution to the systemic challenge of providing appropriate, affordable housing is vital for everyone in society. Indeed, over the past year, so much of our existence has been focused around the home. Where that is sub-standard, it will have exacerbated an already highly challenging time. I commend the Church for focusing with great compassion, and a values-based approach, on these urgent issues, in which we all have a stake."
Chief Rabbi Mirvis, Chief Rabbi of Britain and the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth
"I am very happy for Paradigm to be associated with the report from the Archbishops' Commission. I entirely agree that we need a long term housing strategy and that building a lot more affordable housing should be a central plank of said strategy!"
Matthew Bailes, Chief Executive
"The national network of community-focused housing providers, said: “We commend the excellent work of the Commission and its values-based approach to housing. We particularly welcome the focus on tenants’ voices being heard, considered and acted upon as this is at the heart of what it means to be PlaceShaper. The seven recommendations give a clear pathway based on an in-depth understanding of the root causes and complexities of the housing crisis. PlaceShapers, as a values-based national network with members embedded in local communities, look forward to working as part of the partnerships moving forward these recommendations.”
Matthew Walker, Chair
“It is brilliant to see the Church of England showing leadership and taking action to tackle our growing housing emergency. Looking at how church land can be best used to fight homelessness is extremely welcome.
“Homelessness isn’t inevitable. It’s the result of decades of political failure to build social homes. This is the reason over a quarter of a million people in England are homeless and trapped in temporary accommodation during the pandemic – half of them children.
“The Church is right that homes have to be affordable to local people and tied to local incomes. This is what social housing does, which is why we want to see the Church, the government, and other landowners play their part in building a new generation of social homes.”
Polly Neate, Chief Executive
The Almshouse Association
"The Commission’s report is clear that more needs to be done to tackle the housing crisis through the provision of genuinely affordable housing. We are delighted to find that almshouses have been recognised for their characteristics, of community, collaboration and compassion – as a housing model for the future as well as the past. Now is the time to grasp this opportunity and create a new wave of almshouses for the 21st Century."
The Almshouse Association
The Countryside Charity
“CPRE, the countryside charity, strongly welcomes this report. We hope that the recommendations will have a major influence for the better on all actors in the planning system: Government, major developers, landowners and local communities, especially rural communities. We wholeheartedly agree with the need for a coherent, long term housing strategy, focusing particularly on those in greatest need. This means, as the report highlights, specific focus on and targets for new affordable homes, and this should mean genuinely affordable. Too often in recent years the quality of new development has been poor and the houses built have not met local needs, with rural areas particularly poorly served. For all our futures, the planning system needs to play a greater role in reducing the price of land and providing better designed, better located, zero carbon, and community friendly schemes."
Crispin Truman, Chief Executive
The Housing Finance Corporation Ltd
"THFC welcomes the Church’s leadership in reshaping the way we think about land and housing and offering what could become a bold new model for patient capital. To address the housing crisis Britain needs a vision for housing that encompasses the five values set out in this report so that the sector can work together to make the sacrifices needed to build back better."
Piers Williamson, Chief Executive
The Methodist Church
“We welcome this report and are glad to have been able to contribute to this valuable research through the secondment of a member of staff to the team. The people who suffer the most as a result of our national housing crisis are the poorest and the most marginalised in our society. Covid has exacerbated this and the major structural challenges we face as a community are likely to become more apparent as millions more find themselves vulnerable to losing their homes or being unable to afford good quality housing. We need new and ambitious ideas to enable a positive environment where quality affordable housing is available to all and we hope that this report will be a catalyst towards an achievable vision for homes for every individual and family which allow for human flourishing.”
The Revd Richard Teal and Carolyn Lawrence, President and Vice-President
The Prince's Foundation
"It is extremely timely that with the high cost and low quality of most new homes in Britain the Church has constructively bolstered the housing debate. Coming Home shows that housing is a moral issue, not a numbers game, and that there is considerable responsibility on landowners and developers to steward the land to make places worthy of future generations. Making beautiful, mixed-use, mixed-income, walkable places where everyone can share a similar quality of life is a just goal and one which is eminently achievable."
Ben Bolgar, Senior Director
The United Reformed Church
“This report shines a welcome spotlight on Britain’s current housing crisis. Its urgent message that we can and must do better is accompanied by an integrated and positive vision of what makes for good homes and flourishing communities. Through case studies and informed policy recommendations, it offers a practical and compelling route map to a society where everyone has access to decent and affordable housing.”
Simeon Mitchell, Secretary for Church and Society
Trowers & Hamlins
"We at Trowers & Hamlins were delighted to be able to contribute our views to the Commission of the Archbishops of Canterbury and York on Housing, Church and Community as they prepared Coming Home - a vitally important report. It is clear that the ongoing need for suitable housing continues through these challenging times and we welcome the Commission's initiative to review how best the Church can play an active part in making a real difference across the built environment and the communities we live in."
Trowers & Hamlins