It doesn't cost anything to become a member of the co-operative.

At this stage, while we're in the process of building co-operatively owned housing which we intend to live in, the requirements for members are focussed more on chipping in hours and effort to make the project a reality.

We will soon need to raise the money for the build, seeking loans from banks and from our supporters. Some of this money might come from members, but it doesn't have to. Not having money to invest will not be a barrier to joining, now or ever.

Once the houses are built, resident members will be expected to pay rent at a rate that varies depending on their means. Many rooms will be below 80% of the local average rental prices and we will accept housing benefits. If you have a higher income or inherited wealth then you can expect to pay a bit more.

We haven't got an exact figure yet. We are still developing the design of the buildings, the financial model and the community model - these designs will affect things like how many bedrooms we have and how much each person pays. In our current financial modeling we estimate that we will be able to charge lower than average local rents. We expect there to be a sliding scale depending on members earnings and inherited wealth background.

We haven't decided that yet, get involved and you'll get to decide on that with us.

You are welcome to apply as a group. Children under 18 years cannot be formal members of the co-op legally but they can live in the community with us and will get a say.

We are currently open to membership applications from people who have a local connection to Lockleaze and/or a relationship to an existing member.

We expect to be taking out a mortgage for the build from a bank. Like most co-ops we will also raise funds as loans from members, our friends & family as well as people & organisations who support the co-operative movement - this is called loanstock. There are also some grants available for different things like help with the removal of the existing garages that we hope to apply for.

Currently we get together in person or on zoom once a week on Monday evenings, have a meeting where we take on tasks like speaking with banks or applying for grants or writing membership FAQs. We take it in turns to cook, facilitate and minute the meetings.

Eventually we will have houses to live in at which point we have some values we expect people to live by which you can read about in our purpose and values policy. All co-op policy is written and voted on as a group so we can evolve and change as a group.

We expect that everyone who lives at Furze will want to eat together some of the time but not everyday. Likewise for the wellbeing of the community we expect people will want to join some group social activities.  We all have slightly different ideas about how much we want to live in community and where our boundaries are so there needs to be flexibility and tolerance in our expectations on others and on our individual commitments to each other.

Furze is a hardy flowering plant. It's a west country word - it other parts of the country the plant is called gorse.

Etymology. From Middle English firse, furs, from Old English fyrs (“furze, gorse, bramble”), from Old English fyres (“furze”), related to Old English fȳr (“fire”); otherwise of unknown origin.