About Our Community
Cohousing is a way of living which consciously brings individuals and families together to share common aims and activities, while also enjoying their own self-contained accommodation and personal space. Communities are a means of compensating for the alienating effects of modern life, where neighbours don’t recognise each other and where day-to-day collaboration is minimal. They offer particular benefits for children in terms of secure play-space and shared activities with their peers. Older people can also find companionship and mutual support.
Like other cohousing communities, Trelay has a range of living spaces where people have privacy behind their own front doors, as well as several communal buildings. It is like a small hamlet. We were delighted to find it for sale in 2007 as it had fertile fields, attractive woods, a sea view, a farmhouse, barns, and several cottages with full residential planning permission. It is an ideal property for a rural cohousing community where we can develop some pioneering features.
Trelay is set up and run by its members for mutual benefit. Members are consciously committed to living as a community. Developments are designed to encourage social contact and a sense of neighbourhood among members.
Community members share the land and a number of communal buildings. The ground floor of the farmhouse has a large kitchen and living room where we meet for communal meals and meetings. There is also a pantry for shared food, and a laundry room. The Games Room has table tennis and pool tables, and is also used for film shows, music and dancing. There is a large polytunnel and ideas for more. We plan to develop children’s play areas and community gardens.
We currently have 21 living spaces.
You must get to know the community to be eligible for these properties or our housing waiting list, this can be done by attending Interest Weekends, Volunteering Weeks or joining us for our little festival in May. ‘Shared ownership’ or rental is a possibility for an initial period. Once you have visited and feel that you would like to take it further, you will be invited to visit us regularly so you can live and work side by side with us, and also to workshop weekends about the development of the community.
New Members will sign our Covenant and will undertake to share the benefits and responsibilities of Trelay. They will agree to help maintain the community and the farm, usually by carrying out community work of about five hours per week.