Putting our own house in order?

Putting our own house in order?

01 November 2021 by Alison Tsang in Housing.


We all know there is a housing crisis in London; tackling it can seem overwhelming.

But we all have a part to play. Yes, even the Church.

In fact, particularly the Church.

That was one of the key themes of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Commission on Housing report “Coming Home” that was published in April this year.

And it is the theme of the last of our three Diocese of London Housing Summits, held as a response, this Thursday, 4th November, from 7.30pm-9pm, held on Zoom.


Why the church?

Churches own land and buildings; dioceses do as well.

So should we use these assets in some way to offer genuinely affordable, safe and appropriate homes for those who currently are poorly housed or homeless?

And if the answer to that is YES: how do we do practically do that, overcoming the many barriers that are stopping us?

That is what we’ll tackle over the course of the evening.

We will hear from those parishes and Dioceses who are the forefront of innovative workable ideas around offering affordable housing.

Hosted by the Right Revd Graham Tomlin, Bishop of Kensington and vice chair of the Housing Commission:

  • We’ll hear theological framing of this work from Nicola Harris, the Church of England’s very first Chaplain for Housing. She will unpack WHY the church should be involved in this work.

  • We’ll be given national overview of work taking place from Jacob Quagliozzi of Housing Justice, including their Faith in Affordable Housing team, who have had great success and learning in Wales.

  • We’ll listen to some great ideas coming from churches who have dared to pray and dream, and then act.

  • We’ll hear more about the new idea of modular housing from churches in East London and “Z Pods” in Bristol where cheap and affordable pre-fab housing can be put over existing car parks.

  • We’ll talk to a church who are seeking to give their land to build truly affordable homes for their local community, and hear the decision making processes they had to go through to get there, as well as some of the challenges

  • We’ll have wisdom from an expert in local authority affordable housing schemes about why working in partnership with your council can unlock real potential for those you serve in your community.

Example of modular housing: the “Malachi Project” based at Salvation Army in Ilford. This project provides affordable safe housing for those who otherwise may find themselves sleeping on the street.

There will also be a chance for interaction, and we’ll give space to hear too from YOU.

We’d love to hear about plans and hopes for better housing in your local area, or things you are already involved in that we can learn from.

We’ll also listen to what the barriers & challenges are for you so we can think about shaping our response going forward in this vital area of ministry.

Plus room to ask your questions: so we can all get a better understanding of what we mean when we talk about the housing crisis, and ‘affordable housing’.

Come along with thoughts questions ready to grill panel including Bishop Graham, the Church of England’s first Housing Chaplain and many on the ground experts!

Alison Tsang

Alison Tsang

Alison heads up the Compassionate Communities for the Diocese of London, who exist to support & equip churches and chaplaincies across the Diocese to better serve their communities compassionately.

View all posts by Alison Tsang

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