2022 Sea Mills Public Consultations Wrapped
By Noah Fagan
One of the things I love about being part of the Sea Mills project management team at Tiny House Community Bristol is the variety of roles I am involved in. In particular I enjoy meeting local people and hearing their voice, their concerns and discussing how the project can be a positive part of the wider community.
At our final engagement event of the year, I helped set up the space, made cups of tea and discussed what had progressed with local neighbours. As I am an architect too, I also took the opportunity to mark out an example floor plan of one of the proposed dwellings, on the floor of the Sea Mills Methodist Church.
I wanted to do this because it is often so hard for people to imagine what it is like to be in a tiny house. Often people hear the word ‘tiny’ and mistake it with ‘small and lacking basic requirements’. I wanted to show that the floor plan, although smaller than standard housing, does much more with less space.
I was delighted when an elderly local resident asked me to show her around the floor plan, which is just what I was hoping for. So much thought goes into the design of these spaces, but I knew the brightly coloured string on the floor would need a bit of context, in addition to the furniture someone brought over to make the space easier to understand. Together, we pulled together an exhibit that helped to show the quality of what we are trying to achieve with this tiny house development and helped locals to better envision our plan.
In addition, I was pleased to be there with Sam, one of our architects from Barefoot Architects Ltd. and Olly, our permaculture designer, who could add their own voices to the conversations they had with local residents, and bring more and more dimensions of the scheme to life. It felt like a real team effort and we covered so many questions and topics.
One of the memorable moments for me was being able to finish the event with a cup of tea and toastie in hand, as locals, visitors, consultants and THCB members sat together in a circle, talking about the results of these consultations that had taken place over the past four months. People shared about what had inspired, what had worked, what was ongoing and what to do next. Magic.
In February 2023, THCB aims to hold a final public consultation on the site of the proposed development, providing a site tour and details on the most up to date plans that will continue to evolve as we work towards submitting planning permission. We look forward to inviting you to join us in the new year to further grow our vision for Bristol's first regenerative tiny house community.
For a list of FAQs and our responses that came from these consultation events, please click here.
Note: Noah is our ‘external’ project manager, meaning he comes with much experience from a diverse architectural and project management background. He works in a team with our two ‘internal’ project managers, Maddy and Rachel who work with Noah to ensure that the vision, principles and values of THCB are honoured and brought to life, challenging business as usual practices and assumptions and introducing regenerative practices instead.