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...archived news.

Blackpool Council South Beach Area Action Plan. In Spring of this year we completed the community consultation phase of the South Beach Area Action Plan prepared by Blackpool Council’s Planning Department.

The AAP came out of a very detailed, and high quality, planning analysis of the issues, prepared by the Planning Department, in an area of Britain’s main holiday resort immediately south of Blackpool Tower. It contains a range of options for each of the identified 10 sub-areas within the AAP boundaries.

We ran a number of consultation workshops to test community reaction both to the analysis of the issues, and the options for change. Our final summary report drew all this together, and will allow the Council to move to the inspection stage of this long term project.

Oldham ITA. Following the recent stock transfer ballot in which 86% of tenants voting voted ‘yes’ to transfer, Oldham Council’s homes will transfer to First Choice Homes Oldham (FCHO) at the end of 2010. FCHO will become the second ALMO to convert to housing association status.

After having been originally appointed as ITAs in February 2009 for the pre-ballot work, we were pleased to be re-appointed in Spring 2010 to carry out the post-ballot work until transfer.

We have been working principally with the Oldham Tenants’ Forum on a range of issues including; the proposed FCHO Customer Involvement Strategy : the major capital programme; and proposals for developing an Oldham-wide tenant led body that will link FCHO’s structures to Oldham Council’s wider community engagement structures.



India House Residents Association (Manchester). In early summer 2010 we also began the initial phase of work with the India House Residents’ Association (IHRA). IHRA represents residents in a block of flats owned by Guinness Northern Counties which is located right in the heart of Manchester City Centre.

IHRA want to look at their options for influencing a range of management issues, and particular cleaning and caretaking, and have asked us to work with themselves and GNC on this.



North Bransholme ITA.
The North Bransholme stock transfer ballot , held earlier this year, also resulted in a ‘yes’ vote, with 56% of those voting casting their votes in favour.

We acted as ITA over a period of 18 months in the pre-ballot period, and will carry on with that role in the post-ballot period.

The North Bransholme transfer proposal came out of a tenant-led stock options led by URBAN (United Residents of Bransholme Area North) and supported by Ed Isaacs of Partners in Change who will continue to support the group as the estate prepares to transfer to the Riverside Group.

Greenfields Community Housing Association - Impact Assessment. At the end of July 2010 we also made the final presentation on our Impact Assessment of the Community Empowerment Strategy (CES) for Greenfields Community Housing Association in Essex.

Greenfields is one of the first Community Gateway organisations in England, with around 30% of its 8,500 households already in membership of the organisation.

Our impact assessment looked internally at how well the individual elements of the CES have worked in the two and a half years since establishment, and externally at how the operation of the CES will fit both with the new TSA regulatory requirements and with the Audit Commission’s inspection process.

Our overall conclusions were very positive, and we have made over 40 recommendations to help develop the CES further.



Horwich RMI Cricket Club. Following a successful bid of £8,600 we made for the Club in 2007 to ‘Awards for All’, we recently prepared another bid of around £6,000 on the club’s behalf to build on the success of its ‘Cricket for All’ programme.

This latest bid ,if successful, will: provide two new cricket practice nets to be used with its new practice wickets; fund the re-laying of the square; and allow the purchase of a ‘water hog’ (it rains quite a lot in Horwich).

The overall aim of the project is to make the Horwich RMI Cricket Club one of the main centres of junior cricket development in Lancashire.

PS Consultants is happy to continue to be one of the sponsors of Horwich RMI CC.








Justice After Aquittal (JAA).  We recently completed an outline business plan for a small voluntary sector organisation with a national network. Alongside that work we also prepared funding bids on behalf of the JAA to two charities.

We are pleased to report that the Andrew Wainwright Trust has just awarded the JAA a generous grant which will allow it to develop its work over the next 12 months. The outcome of the second bid is expected later this year.

Top priorities for next three years outlined by TSA. The Tenant Services Authority has set out its priorities for the next three years, to work towards securing a fair deal for tenants, protecting the taxpayer and delivering modern and effective regulation.

Key Dates. Social Housing Landlords will have to publish plans for meeting these standards as soon as possible after April 1st 2010 and by no later than October 1st 2010 – and have them in place by no later than April 1st 2011

Can you meet the challenge?