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Community guide to garden cities

Download the community guide to garden cities 'How good can it be? a guide to building better places'

(c) The Land Trust

As support for a new generation of garden cities and new towns grows, including approval from all three major political party leaders, Britain’s oldest planning and housing charity, the Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA), has published a guide for communities on understanding the opportunities for development along garden city principles in their locality, ‘How good could it be? A guide to building better places’.

This publication is a short and simple plain-English guide for communities that want to grasp the garden city agenda, highlighting the opportunities that incorporating Garden City principles at the local level can bring. These include opportunities for self build, allotments, community land trusts, management of local parks and community facilities and community planning.

Community Guide to Garden Cities - Further information and contacts 

There are so many useful sources of information on how to do things which can help make the garden city vision a reality that we couldn't fit them all in the guide. A list of useful contacts and weblinks is provided below. 

Who should I talk to about…

...Garden City principles?

The TCPA has campaigned for the Garden City approach to development for more than a century. Publications on Garden City principles and the benefits and practicalities of their application can be found elsehwere on our website. Key documents include:

Letchworth Garden City Heritage Foundation Visit and learn from the world’s first Garden City 

International Garden Cities Exhibition Learn about Letchworth's legacy and influence around the world 

Welwyn Garden City Heritage Trust Visit and learn from the Garden City that became a New Town

Welwyn Garden City Society Learn from the society aimed at protecting the Garden City vision for Welwyn 


…help with planning?

Planning Aid Independent planning advice for those unable to pay professional fees

Department for Communities and Local Government Guidance and information on planning policies and programmes

Planning Advisory Service Advice for local authorities on planning issues

 ATLAS Advice on planning for large-scale development

My Community Rights Online hub and advice service run by Locality

Action with Communities in Rural England (ACRE) Assistance for rural communities through community-led planning

Community Matters Charitable federation for community associations

Direct Gov Government website for citizens offering information on public services and Government Departments


… help with design?

 Design Council CABE Source of advice on architecture and design  

The Glass-House Community Led Design National charity on design and regeneration and empowering communities 

The Landscape Institute Advice on making the most of your local landscapes from the Royal Chartered body for landscape architects

BREEAM Information about sustainable building standards 


 … setting up a community organisation?

National Community Land Trust Network National body for Community Land Trusts

Co-operative Enterprise Hub Support for new and prospective community co-operatives

The Land Trust Independent body managing green spaces for and with local communities

Civic Voice National charity for the civic movement in England

Locality Network and source of information for community-led organisations

Co-operatives UK National trade association for cooperatives

The Big Society Network National network to develop and showcase ides for community projects

Incredible Edible Network Network of community led urban food growing initiatives

My Community Starter Resource for starting smaller community projects

Citizens UK The national home of community organising

National Association of Local Councils The National Association of Local Councils (NALC) represents the interests of town and parish councils in England


… help with funding and investment?

GOV.UK Postcode-based tool for finding funding in your area

The Princes Trust List of community project funds

The Ethical Property Foundation Independent property advice for charities and community and not-for-profit groups

Groundwork National organisation with a network of local trusts working with local authorities and community groups

See also Locality, National Community Land Trust Network (above)

…technical help on things like energy, transport and play space?

Self-build homes 

National Self Build Association Resources and advice on building your own home


Brighton Energy Co-operative Community energy in action in Brighton

The Rough Guide to Community Energy Advice and inspiration for community-based carbon cutting and renewable energy projects

Energy Saving Trust Advice on lowering carbon emissions in your community

Co-operatives UK Guide to to cooprative renewable energy in the UK 

Community Energy A guide for local groups who might be inetrested in setting up a communtiy energy project  - porduced by the Department for Energy and Climate Change 

Plan Local  (centre for Sustainable Energy)

Community Land Trusts 

National Community Land Trust Network National body for Community Land Trusts

East London Community Land Trust London's first Community Land Trust - just one of many case studies provided by the National CLT Network. 


The Community Transport Association support and advice for community transport initiatives

Sustrans Advice and resources on sustainable travel

Sport and Play

Sport England Advice on the design and maintenance of sports facilities

Play England Resources on play space and facilities

Fields in Trusts Toolkits Information and guidance on outdoor space 

Gardening, Food and Farming 

Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens National community farms/gardens charity

Royal Horticultural Society Resources and information about community gardening 

Incredible Edible Network Network of community led urban food growing initiatives

Groundwork National organisation with a network of local trusts working with local authorities and community groups

Planning for healthier places 

Reuniting health and planning TCPA report on planning for healthier communities 


London Community Resource Network Resources and network promoting community recycling and waste management. National network coming soon

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