Granby Community Land Trust - Liverpool


  • The Granby Triangle is an area of Victorian terraces in Toxteth, which was part of the Liverpool New Heartlands Housing Market Renewal (HMR) Pathfinder Area
  • A programme of demolition of properties had been underway in Toxteth, as part of the HMR Programme, and by 2010 it seemed that the remaining streets, including the Four Streets, would ultimately be cleared despite the opposition which had been expressed over the preceding years
  • However, the HMR programme came to an end in 2010 as a result of the financial crisis and the incoming Coalition Government deciding to stop any further funding. This in turn halted the demolition
  • Meanwhile the residents and local community organisations had formed a new campaign group, with the aim of finding a way to renovate the houses and improve the area and in November 2011 the Granby Four Streets Community Land Trust came into existence
  • At that stage Liverpool City Council put the Four Streets out to tender, hoping that one developer would take on the work. The contract for the renovation of the properties was won in March 2012 by a private company, which promised to deliver an exciting programme of renovation involving the community.  However, after another six months of little or no progress, the local authority withdrew its offer
  • None of the local housing associations wanted to take the risk for all four streets and the local authority had no more ideas
  • The CLT approached the local authority in November 2012 and out of these meetings a proposal came forward that the CLT, assisted by Assemble Architects, should acquire and renovate some of the properties
  • Meanwhile, Plus Dane Housing Association and Liverpool Mutual Homes became involved and a plan to refurbish other properties in the area started to emerge
  • The City Council then agreed to sell the CLT ten properties for £1 each, five of which would be retained as rented housing for local people, while the other five would be sold on a shared ownership basis
  • The CLT raised £1.5 million in loans and grants to carry out the renovations and the work commenced in 2014, winning the Turner Prize in 2015. Subsequently a commitment has been obtained from the local authority to donate the four empty corner shops within the four streets

Key Messages

  • Asset transfer can be used as a lever to bring in other funding which would otherwise not have been available to invest in an area. Granby received grants from Power To Change, the Empty Homes Grants Programme and the Arts Council, as well as raising loans from a social investor
  • Concerted action undertaken by a community can also act as a catalyst for housing associations and other investors to get on board
  • It’s possible to use social, economic and environmental benefits to underpin the case for disposal at less than market value to community-led organisations 

More information on Granby Four Streets is here and here


Published in March 2018