THE REAL STORY
We’ve all watched those luxury property shows on TV with an envious eye.
That huge swimming pool in the back garden or a big, bubbling Jacuzzi on the decking.
We’ll never be able to afford something like that, we say.
But maybe we will… Communities across the country are now pooling their resources to make their wishes come true.
From putting money in a shared pot to buy communal pools, to building an entire retirement village of their very own, communities are splashing out like never before. But where has this trend come from? Professor Matthew Humphreys, from Royal Holloway, University of London, an expert on community and regeneration, says this type of ‘community empowerment’ has been on the cards for a while.
‘Local authorities used to be able to do a lot more things for their communities,’ he says.
‘But there isn’t the government funding any more.
‘It’s created a “bottom-up” approach – people are getting in there and doing it for themselves.
‘They’re the million-dollar ingredient.’
So just what are these groups getting up to, and what can we legally do ourselves?
Real People’s Candice Ritchie explores this community craze…