Cohousing planning permission

August 7, 2015 12:00 am

Planning go ahead for cohousing in Colchester

If you have not arrived here via the STOP PRESS on our home page, or from reading our current newsletter, we are very pleased to announce here for you:

Planning Permission!  The scheme for our lovely site at Cannock Mill has been approved by Colchester’s Planning Committee.
We have changed our company name to
Cannock Mill Cohousing Colchester Ltd to mark this great step forwards.  We hope you like our new logo!

Outside the Town Hall after the Planning Committee meeting

Outside the Town Hall after the Planning Committee meeting, a happy group of cohousers

We also hope you like this new website!  This blog shamelessly reuses prose from the News Release we sent to journalists – so the style is a bit more formal than usual.

Our 23 homes cohousing development at listed Cannock Mill, Colchester will be one of the largest Passivhaus, low-energy developments in Essex and we hope a milestone in the development of cohousing in the UK.



Jane Blackburn, Chair of the Cannock Mill Cohousing group said ‘We are delighted that planning permission has been granted. It has been a long and arduous year since we bought the beautiful Cannock Mill site and now we can look forward to building our dreams. We decided that Colchester was the best place for us to be and so we are celebrating not just achieving planning permission but a change of name to show that we belong here.’

She continued ‘Our group started in London and we spent several years looking at sites within 90 minutes of the capital at all points of the compass. Colchester is a great place for us; it’s vibrant and energetic, its history gives a real sense of place and yet delightful countryside is all around. We have really enjoyed meeting our new neighbours in the Old Heath area and have already welcomed two Colchester people to our group, so we hope more will come to join us.’




Anne Thorne, the award winning architect for the scheme and a member of Cannock Mill Cohousing, said ‘There are over two acres, with Cannock Mill and a separate Victorian mill house. The scheme ensures that buildings close to the Mill respect its historic qualities and renovation of the mill pond itself is part of the solution to the site’s difficult ground water conditions. The new build flats and houses will be to the highest Passivhaus eco standards and to Lifetime Homes standards making them long-term housing for all.’


Jane Blackburn concluded ‘We firmly believe that cohousing is the future and now we can build our own futures in Colchester. We are open to new members and I hope that the Cannock Mill site, along with our ethos and values, will encourage people to join us.’