Late in October, 36 new homes made from recycled shipping containers began arriving in Brighton to become temporary dwellings for men and women that have had a history of homelessness.

The initiative was begun by the Brighton Housing Trust, a housing charity, and QED Estates Ltd, a housing developer. Located in New England Road on a plot that is known as Richardson’s Yard, the development is taking the place of a car park and a former scrap metal yard. Because the land is not suitable for long-term housing, the location is temporary, but the container homes can be easily relocated when the five-year permit expires.


“We expect residents to be moving in about five weeks after the arrival of the first container on site and turn this exciting and innovative housing concept into reality,” said Ross Gilbert of QED, in a recent interview with The Argus. “Our temporary use of land earmarked for future regeneration demonstrates just what can be done in the interim to help solve the acute housing shortage.”

Twenty-one residents have been chosen and are “being prepared to move into their new homes,” said Andy Winter, Chief Executive of BHT. “The residents will have completed one of BHT’s programme for change and will free up space in other services that will be able to take in men and women who are currently on the streets.”

Designed and built in The Netherlands for a housing project in Amsterdam that was not finalized, the shipping containers are being stacked in three- and five-story configurations, with stairways leading to the upper stories, and will feature solar roof panels, gardens, and balconies.