History of the Trust
The Lakeland Housing Trust (formerly known as the Lake Country Cottage Society) was founded in 1937 by a far-sighted group of individuals. They could have had little idea however, that homes for local people would grow into one of the most pressing issues of our time.
Even before the Second World War, there was a serious shortage of houses for workers and their families in the Lake District. The society set out to help them find a home.
What we do
Our portfolio of properties continues to grow – we currently own 43 properties. Several have been left to the Trust as legacies; others have been purchased and funded by gifts, loans or bequests. The management of our properties is primarily undertaken by staff at H&H Land & Estates. However, our Trustees also play an active role ensuring that the charity is managed effectively, selecting new tenants visiting and inspecting properties and overseeing the acquisition, building and maintenance programme.
Chronological History of The Lakeland Housing Trust
1937 - The Lake Country Cottage Society (later to become The Lakeland Housing Trust) was founded by a far-sighted group of individuals.
1938 - A plot of land was given to the Lake Country Cottage Society and building commenced on a row of four cottages in Torver (1 - 4 Kitchen Syke) - designed by architect Bannatyne Lewis, who accepted no fee. They were constructed at a cost of £1964. The funds were raised by public subscription – a forerunner to the current ‘Community Land Trusts’ (CLTs)
Efforts to find land suitable for building in Hawkshead and Coniston failed for various reasons and little progress was made during and immediately after the Second World War. The Society was also unable to obtain planning permission on land donated in Grasmere.
1951 - Ten quarry workers’ cottages in Little Langdale were purchased by the Society - a row of seven at Fitzsteps and a row of three (called New Houses).
1955 - Four cottages at Neaum Hurst, Skelwith Bridge, Langdale were bequeathed to the Society
1956 - The Society sold three properties (New Houses) in Little Langdale to fund the renovation of the cottages at Fitzsteps and Neaum Hurst.
1967 - 3 Busk Cottages, Ambleside purchased by the Society.
1973 - Gable Cottage, Hawkshead bequeathed to the Society.
1977 - Two properties in Troutbeck were bequeathed to the Society - Cicely Parrock and Sidey Bank.
1980 - The Society let two properties on behalf of their owners (Birch Mill Cottage, Crook and 4 Rydal View, Ambleside).
1980 - A house in Swarthmoor was bequeathed to the Society. It was sold immediately, as it was situated outside our area of operation and the funds were set aside for the renovation and purchase of other properties.
1988 - Birch Mill Cottage, Crook was donated to the Society.
1988 - The Lake Country Cottage Society registered as a charity with the Charity Commission, changing its name to The Lakeland Housing Trust.
1991 - Cicely Parrock (Troutbeck) was split into two properties (as it once had been) and South Parrock was created.
1993 - Two properties were purchased by the Trust - 12 Hawksgarth, Hawkshead and 2 Kirkfield, Ambleside.
1996 - 4 Rydal View, Ambleside was purchased by the Society.
2000 - The Trust purchased four properties: 6 St Martin’s Court, Coniston; 2 Compston Street, Ambleside; 3 High Wray Cottages and 9 Hawksgarth, Hawkshead.
2001 - Ivy Cottage, Lindale was offered to and purchased by the Trust below market value.
2002 - Birch Mill Cottage, Crook was sold by the Trust as it was outside our area of operation and the funds were put towards the purchase of the Trust’s first property in Grasmere -18 Benfield.
2004 - 8 Kirkfield Rise, Ambleside purchased by the Trust.
2007 - 31 Greenbank, Ambleside was offered to and purchased by the Trust below market value.
2008 - Kirkstone Foot Cottage, Ambleside (Millicent Monk-Mason property) was offered to and purchased by the Trust below market value.
2010 - Crag Foot Cottage, Grasmere and a significant sum of money was bequeathed to the Trust.
2012 - The Trust was offered the opportunity to redevelop the Reading Room, Outgate when the Lake District National Park Authority supported its conversion into two cottages – 1 & 2, The Reading Room.
2013 - 5 & 6, Broadgate, Grasmere purchased by the Trust.
2016 - Millans Court, Ambleside (Millicent Monk-Mason property) was bequeathed to the trust. Unfortunately the property had to be sold as there were limitations on it being let. The proceeds have been set aside for the renovation and purchase of other properties.
2017 - 1, 2 & 3, Lakefield Cottages, Near Sawrey offered to and purchased by the Trust at below market value.
2017 - High Green Gate Cottage, Sawrey bequeathed to the Trust.
2018 - Fern Cottage, Clappersgate bequeathed to the Trust. The property was renamed Spedding Cottage after its late owner.
2018 - High Crag, Ambleside bequeathed to the Trust. It was agreed with the family of the late owner that the large property should be sold and another property purchased in Ambleside, with the remaining funds going towards ongoing building projects.
2019 - 12, Loughrigg Park, Ambleside purchased by the Trust with the proceeds from the sale of High Crag.
2019 - 1, Lakefield Cottages was redeveloped to create two properties. The additional property named Brockbank Cottage after its late owner.