sponsored by Local Partnerships
Blaby’s newest community is being delivered at pace at New Lubbesthorpe against the background of a housing crisis in Britain. True innovation is being delivered through the council’s collaborative and proactive partnership with landowners, housing developers, public and private sector partners. These relationships are creating a place where communities and businesses will thrive and where people want to live. New Lubbesthorpe will include 4,250 houses, thousands of jobs, three schools, district and local centres, health facilities, and parks and open space. This pioneering development is creating a thriving community and job opportunities for local people.
I4B Holdings is Brent LBC’s wholly owned company set up to deliver better outcomes for people who would otherwise be homeless by providing responsible, stable and affordable private rental sector accommodation. The company is an imaginative and innovative solution to the current crisis in social housing, delivering more for less by rehousing families who have been living in expensive temporary accommodation for months, or even years. It makes a real difference to people’s lives, providing homes in residential neighbourhoods near schools and amenities such as parks, into which residents can settle without fear of sudden eviction.
Cheshire West & Chester Council
Housing delivery programme
Cheshire West & Chester Council has become a leading housing developer in the borough. Its ambitious strategy, set out in 2014, was to increase the rate of house building, address the growing affordability gap and to provide housing choice and quality to all residents. This vision is now realised, with the completion of 414 new homes in three years, including 130 new council homes in the borough – the first for nearly 40 years. The council’s supply, access and quality objectives have all been met, with excellent feedback received from staff, partners and residents.
Essex Homelessness Trailblazer
The Essex Homelessness Trailblazer scheme is a fresh approach to preventing homelessness, helping more than 500 households at risk of losing their homes to keep a roof over their heads. In addition to stopping the heartache caused by homelessness, the scheme will save at least £2.7m for taxpayers. The project has had great success in preventing homelessness and bringing together Essex partners to drive forward homelessness policy within the county as a key strand within its vision – in advance of the provisions of the Homelessness Reduction Act.
North East Lincolnshire Council
Some rogue landlords in North East Lincolnshire provide substandard housing. They badly manage more than 4,000 properties, often lacking fire safety precautions. These are generally let to potentially vulnerable tenants such as students and migrant workers, often leading to anti-social behaviour. Enter Operation Trawl. A partnership between Humberside Police, Humberside Fire and Rescue Service, the immigration service, the council homeless team, Community Pride, the Department for Work & Pensions and HMRC, the project identifies links between bad housing and crime and reduces poor quality housing through inspections of landlords. They can avoid prosecution by training in better stewardship. This will reduce crime and improve living conditions for about 15,000 people.
Norwich City Council
Norwich City Council has purposely stepped away from adopting a typical local authority approach as a housing provider in recent years. The council felt it had a choice: go for safe, standard housing or be bold and ambitious. It chose the latter. As a result, the council can boast it is creating what will be the country’s largest Passivhaus scheme for social rent in Norwich, which will be energy efficient in heating and cooling.
Head Start Housing
Available, accessible and affordable social housing is a hot topic, and even more complex when it is for a care leaver. A major hurdle is finding such accommodation. Then comes employment, training and independence. Thurrock’s Head Start Housing scheme is an innovative approach to supporting care leavers and other vulnerable young people. The project provides houses of multiple occupation dedicated to young people and supports tenants in developing skills to be ready for work. This is complemented by tailored training to enable successful, independent living. To date, the pilot has provided accommodation for 10 vulnerable young people and by end of 2017-18 it had saved more than £128,000. Now the scheme is growing.
A word from the award’s sponor
Local Partnerships is a joint venture between the Local Government Association, the Treasury and the Welsh Government. We provide an interface between central government and local delivery. We offer trusted, professional support and advice across multiple disciplines including housing and regeneration, waste, infrastructure, mergers and shared services, integrating health and social care, and more. We help councils achieve and maintain financial resilience. We bring public and private sector experience that provides confidence, additional capacity and commercial capability. Our team of experts works solely for the benefit of the public sector, helping councils and combined authorities overcome challenges and improve their chances of success.
Rosie Pearson, corporate director, Local Partnerships
Jo Negrini, chief executive, Croydon LBC
Irene Lucas, consultant, Irene Lucas Consulting
Eric Robinson, chief executive, Wirral MBC