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Boris Johnson unveils £8m self-build programme

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London mayor Boris Johnson has created an £8 million fund to boost self-build projects in the capital

Under the mayor’s ‘Build Your Own Home – The London Way’ initiative, Londoners can apply for additional loans and grants under the government’s existing ‘Custom Build’ and ‘Community Right to Build’ schemes.

The project offers £5 million in repayable finance for house builders and £3 million in revenue grants for organisations looking to develop community projects.

High profile supporters of the programme include: RIBA’s director Tammie Thomson, Ben Derbyshire of HTA, Peter Murray of New London Architecture and David Birkbeck of Design for Homes.

Johnson said: ‘As we seek to establish a new vernacular for our capital in the 21st century, this project will put Londoners themselves right at the heart of the creative process. With the help of the top industry experts we have on board, there’s never been a better opportunity to help shape the neighbourhood in which you live.’

Derbyshire said: ‘We have certainly fallen far behind what is being achieved by self builders in the US and Northern Europe. This initiative will help to increase the supply of housing in London by leveraging sweat equity into the equation, at the same time reconnecting citizens with place-making.’ 

The initiative comes as housing minister Grant Shapps claims Britain is experiencing a ‘self-build surge’.

He said: ‘The funding and advice being offered will provide a big boost to people eager to bring about change and I would urge all Londoners to make use of the funds and support to ensure their community has the best chance to thrive in the future.’

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