Joining Lancaster Cohousing

How to apply for membership

Prospective Forgebank tenants and leaseholders must have been accepted as members before they can sign their lease or tenancy contract. We recommend that you contact our Membership Team (MIST) at and start the application process as soon as possible to make sure it doesn’t delay the contract.

MIST’s role is to act as the main point of contact and support for people seriously interested in membership, and the community as a whole. We will guide you through the process aiming to ensure that you have a robust understanding about what it means to be part of this community and a realistic expectation that you will be able to contribute and thrive here.

How would I apply for membership?

As part of the membership process, you must complete the following steps:

  1. Contact MIST to learn more about the membership process. Let them know what home you are considering or ask to join the waiting pool if no home is currently available. MIST will help to facilitate your attendance at the meetings and events described below. If you’re visiting from far away, we may be able to arrange accommodation in one of our Guest Rooms.

  1. Book on a tour. Contact MIST to see if you can meet with a membership team representative after the tour.

  1. Read all the info on the website about living here, and our commitments to each other. Read Our Key Agreements which summarises the most significant of our community agreements and links through to the full text of the agreement documents. Please read the summary and the documents to make sure that you understand, support and are happy to abide by these agreements. Don’t hesitate to ask if you have any questions. Satisfy yourself (and us) that you have understood and are willing to abide by our community agreements. If you join, you will be signing up to them.

  1. Submit a bio introducing everyone in your household (perhaps with a photo).  Your bio will be circulated to the community in advance of your visit.  Include in your bio information about what you’d like us to know about you, your history, what’s important to you, what leads you to believe cohousing life is for you, what benefits and challenges you feel you will experience and what you feel you can contribute to the community.

  1. Attend at least one common meal or social event. We encourage you to meet as many members as possible to get a realistic picture of what it is like to live in Lancaster Cohousing so that you can make an informed decision.  Your membership will be decided upon by the members of the community at a general meeting (see below); your membership application could be delayed if it is felt that not enough members have met you and gotten to know you (and vice versa).

  1. Attend a General Meeting (GM).  We would encourage you to read our Introduction to our Consensus Process before you attend.

  1. Attend a Service Team meeting.

  1. Attend an Information Session.

  1. Pet Owners are to read and agree to the Pet Policy and Pet policy guidance and complete the Pet Policy Questionnaire.

  1. Attend an individual meeting with our Travel Service Team and our Car Club (LanCar) to learn more about our Travel Plan, Everyday Travel to and from Forgebank and our Car Club and to discuss the car and parking-related agreements in the lease (for leasehold properties) and how you will comply with them.  

  1. Complete and return an application form (available from

What happens to your application?

When you have completed all the steps of the membership process, MIST present your application to a General Meeting (GM) for decision by all members.

The decision will be coloured by their experience of how you have engaged with the community and with the application process. Do you seem realistic about the benefits and challenges of living at Forgebank? Do you share our aspirations? At least 2 members need to be in a position to ‘sponsor’ you - ie they have got to know you enough to feel confident that you have made a wise choice. Occasionally, we have delayed the decision and asked an applicant to spend longer getting to know us and finding out how the community works.