In 1984, an unheralded transaction took place in Meredith, New Hampshire: 14 families got together to buy the park. Every bank in the county turned them down but they persevered – first trying their luck with the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund (NHCLF), but at just a few months into its existence it had no money to lend. The Sisters of Mercy stepped in and lent funds to the NHCLF, which in turn lent it to the co-op formed by the 14 neighbours.
They were to spawn a movement. NHCLF had just one staff member, Julianna Eades, who became its president and guide for 36 years – and turned that single transaction into a solid market. As of 31 December 2021, there are 140 resident-owned MHPs in New Hampshire.
Over time, calls came in from nearby states, and Paul Bradley, then vice president at NHCLF, knew this demand could not be served by a New Hampshire-focused organisation. A separate national organisation was needed.
Read the rest at Co-operative News
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