Cheshire Community Action (CCA) is excited to announce that it has secured Defra funding for a full time Rural Housing Enabler (RHE) post up to March 2025 as part of its Unleashing Rural Opportunity strategy.

Delivery of rural affordable housing sites has continued to decline in Cheshire and Warrington in recent years. However, our housing needs surveys demonstrate that there are specific housing needs in many rural areas that could be met by small scale affordable housing developments. This programme aims to address the barriers to building on these rural sites, which can for example, help first time buyers on to the ladder to stay within the community they grew up in, and provide options for older generations wanting to downsize and stay living locally.

The RHE role is multifaceted and aims to boost rural affordable housing delivery by:

  • Providing guidance through every step: From the initial spark of interest to the completion of affordable housing schemes, we will support, advise, and steer communities, town, and parish councils through the process.
  • Evidencing housing needs: CCA will continue to provide housing needs surveys and assessments in collaboration with communities and partners.
  • Helping with site identification and development: Working hand in hand with communities and landowners, we’ll help identify viable sites for affordable housing developments, whether through independent schemes or as part of market-led initiatives.
  • Advising on tailored delivery options: Recognising the diverse capacities of our communities, we will assist in choosing the most suitable delivery option, including community-led developments.
  • Supporting community engagement: Ensuring communities remain at the heart of the process, we will work to build and maintain support for schemes.
  • Building a collaborative and influential partnership of expert organisations: CCA will facilitate the new Cheshire & Warrington Rural Housing Task Group – a collaborative partnership of organisations made up of local authorities, housing associations, and landowners with the aim of boosting the supply of new rural affordable housing in Cheshire and Warrington. This Group will advise and oversee the service, which is dedicated to supporting landowners and communities with rural housing delivery. The expertise of our partners will pave the way for more successful planning applications and delivery. It also offers an opportunity for collaboration with local authorities to shape policies and strategies supporting the delivery of rural affordable housing.
  • Providing neighbourhood plan advice: Advising neighbourhood plan groups to implement their proposals and policies that support the delivery of rural affordable housing.

To learn more about how rural affordable housing delivery works, download this free guide from the Rural Housing Alliance.

If you would like to book a free consultation to discuss affordable housing in your village, please email: