MORE than 100 people attended a public meeting in Totnes last Friday (June 16) to see a presentation of the latest Atmos Project plans being put forward for the former Dairy Crest site.

The Totnes Community Development Society described the meeting at the Seven Stars Ball Room as “passionate, inspiring, and illuminating.”

TCDS’ plans include 62 ‘real’ affordable homes, a training hotel, 7,000 sq ft of commercial space for business set ups and offices and a flood defence system.

Owners of the redundant Dairy Crest site Fastglobe have also submitted a new application to develop the site increasing the number of homes to 79 and scrapping plans for holiday units.

TDCS Director, Rob Hopkins started the meeting with an introduction, saying: “If you want to know what Atmos will feel like when built, imagine The Mansion (the town centre community buildings which are currently managed by the society), brimming with entrepreneurs, changemakers and community, but on eight acres”.

TCDS Director Ian Trisk- Grove explained and simplified the method of financing needed to achieve a community building scheme: “Think of it as a buy-to-let mortgage. The rent covers the repayments and after 30 years or so you own the house. It’s actually a straightforward and a well-understood model,” he said.

TCDS Director Frances Northrop added: “It’s time for Fastglobe to do the right thing and sell the site back to the community so we can deliver the things our children and our community need”.

Andrew Kirby of AK Architects, Totnes and lead of the design and planning team of consultants for the Atmos plan said the plans had been revised because of climate changes affecting the old Dairy Crest site which had a vital role in the town’s flood prevention.

He then shared plans and fly though videos of how the Atmos site will look.

“These are your plans. This is your scheme” he told the community.

The video is available on the society’s website

Laurel Ellis and Mary Coughlan-Clarke of the Atmos for Totnes group told the meeting there were 823 households in housing need in South Hams, with demand in Devon for housing six times greater than supply, and “a lack of affordable housing makes sustaining a real community all the more difficult,” they said.

“We need affordable to rent homes in Totnes.”

For more information on the application go to

Fastglobe’s current scheme can be found at