…Steve’s comments in – March 2019

The 2018 Housing Green Paper raises the likelihood that social landlords will be required to issue annual performance reports to their tenants. Since 2014 we have been working in Perth and Kinross Council in Scotland to help them implement their ‘Reporting to Tenants’ obligations , and we are well placed to advise tenants and landlords in England on how that system can be made to work well, and particularly its link to scrutiny.

Since 2017 we have been acting as ITA in the proposed stock transfer of approximately 280 homes in the Lambeth Council Patmos Road area . This is an unusual proposed transfer in that it was triggered by the serving of a ‘Right to Transfer’ notice by the local tenant-led organization PACCA, and if it happens it would be to a for-profit registered provided. The provisional date for the ballot is September 2019.

We recently worked for Cobalt Housing Association on a tenant consultation exercise to assess tenant support for a proposed de-merger from the Symphony Housing Group. We used a wide mix of methods to assess tenant opinion including ; fun days / carnivals ; interviewing at information meetings and in the Cobalt foyer ; telephone interviews with tenants phoning Cobalt on a variety of issues ; pre-paid response post cards ; and others. Over 50% of tenants responded with a very large majority in favour of the de-merger.

Located in our home village, Steve Sharples and Christine Bailey have supported the development of a new Charitable Incorporated Organisation to take over the day-to-day management of the Centre from Bolton Council. In the 12 months or so since the new community -led management arrangements began , the Centre has increased its income by around 250% and greatly expanded its range of activities.