Anglia Ruskin University

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Almshouses: a model of community housing for an ageing population

posted on 2023-07-26, 16:58 authored by Jenny Pannell, Alison Pooley
Almshouses have existed in England for over a thousand years, and new almshouses are still being built. Almshouse charities provide social housing for over 36,000 people in around 30,000 dwellings. Most almshouse residents are older people (aged 50/60+ years), yet built environment and housing professionals, politicians and others concerned with the provision of housing for older people are more familiar with other social housing providers than with almshouse charities. Research on almshouses tends to focus on their architectural and social history, detailing historic buildings, the past role of philanthropy, and the lives of residents, rather than their current or future role in housing provision. Recent reports addressing housing issues, and more specifically addressing rented housing for older people, have tended to concentrate on housing with care as solutions for future provision. This research starts to fill the gap by taking a future-focused approach, looking at recent almshouse developments to inform housing provision in the 21st century. It explores their distinct and valuable contribution to housing older people to inform built environment and housing professionals, including architects and surveyors, funders, local authority housing and planning officers, prospective partner organisations, Homes England and the UK government.




Place of publication

London, UK


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Report type

  • Project Report

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Legacy Faculty/School/Department

Faculty of Health, Education, Medicine & Social Care

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