Don’t fear ‘Garden Tax’ – Land Value Tax is a good idea

I’ve written before that housing, property prices, land rights and so on are a big chuffing catastrophe for a lot of people in the UK, more so the young and property-less more than anyone else. For example, I couldn’t read the whole of ‘All that is solid’ by Danny Dorling because it just ended up making me really sad. I even blogged about this occasionally to a small audience of weirdos. (And I ask you – is there a higher calling?)

I felt simultaneously annoyed and compelled to write something about the news (specifically in the Sun, Mail, Telegraph, Express, Star) popping up slamming what they choose to call the called ‘Garden Tax’ announced in the Labour manifesto for the just-around-the-corner general election… but it’s not.

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The Lyons Review

“The 180-page review, probably the most extensive single piece of policy produced by Labour in opposition, sets out a plan for building 200,000 new homes by 2020.” (The Guardian)

They want to double the amount of custom/self build

Headline figure: They want to double the amount of custom/self build

Politics aside, the Lyons Review is a real whopper and took around a year to produce. I’m obviously not going to dissect the entire thing, but let’s see what lies within…

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Local housing co-op – loan stock invitation

A local housing co-op has had an offer accepted on a property in Scraptoft/Humberstone-ish area. They are now looking to raise loan stock (from people like you!) as well as securing a mortgage from Triodos for the remaining amount. Investment starts from as little as £50.

Download the full blurb here: Scraptoft Housing Loan Stock Invitation

Well worth a look if you are interested in the general concept or are looking for a local investment. Contact for more info.

Tires, worms, rammed earth, apples…

A mix of things from further experiments at Saffron Acres:


Some things we baked in the earth oven – apple pastry, a gently melted camembert with fruit and nuts stuck in for good measure, and a classic baked apple. The apples were from the site. Keep your eyes peeled for another bakin’ day. We did some bread and mini pizzas too.

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Two complete houses built in an afternoon! (for insects, sorry)


Yes, two multi-storey deluxe houses built by one person in one shed in one day! (sort of)

Have an old fence post lying around? Don’t buy a bug house when you can build one yourself. The one on the left has some bamboo running through it. I used a size 7 drill bit which seems about right for a ladybird as well as a size 20 flat wood drill bit for the larger holes. They do need a roof of some sort and the holes should ideally slant upwards to also help stay dry. The main wood itself should be left unpainted/treated.

A rainy day project if ever there was one. Get it done now in time for the cold weather when bugs will really need it.