Source: City of Stoke-on-Trent
Published: Monday, 17th February 2020
Staff at Stoke-on-Trent City Council are celebrating after being shortlisted for two UK Housing Awards for the third year in a row.
The council is a finalist in this year’s Homebuilder of the Year category, while its housing repairs and maintenance company Unitas has been recognised in the Direct Labour Organisation (DLO) category.
The UK Housing Awards recognise and reward the very best ingenuity, creativity, passion and results in the UK housing sector. They are run by the Chartered Institute of Housing and Inside Housing and last year the city council picked up the Council of the Year award, largely due to an innovative approach to housing growth.
This year the city council has been recognised for a number of initiatives, including:
- Its Draft Local Plan ambition for 16,000 new homes between 2013-33;
- Fortior Homes, the city council’s housing company, delivering 424 new homes and agreeing a second programme of an additional 450 new homes for private rent and open market sale;
- Delivering a £1 million annual return to the city council through Fortior’s activities;
- Securing £9m Housing Infrastructure Funding to kick start nine stalled brownfield sites (950 homes);
- Leading on an innovative £40 million initiative to deliver 400 new homes through institutional investment funding;
- Developing 1,600 new affordable homes over the next five years – worth £165 million;
- Committed to redeveloping three brownfield sites into 242 new apartments for the elderly;
- Completing 130 new affordable homes and a further 248 on site;
- Working with adult social care staff and charities to deliver accommodation for young people with learning difficulties and children with life-limiting illnesses.
Unitas has been recognised for:
- Developing a sub-contractor framework, directly contributing £33 million to the local economy;
- Achieving a reduction of 44 per cent on the average end to end time to re-let void properties, generating £800,000 savings in void rent loss per annum;
- Investing in electric vehicles, drone technology, sprinkler systems, loft insulation and improved IT;
- Completing more than 96,000 responsive tasks in customers’ homes;
- Completing more than 200 roof renewals;
- Upgrading 1,400 central heating systems and completing 38,628 gas services;
- Marking more than 1.5 million hours of work on-site accident free;
- Contributing more than £3,700 to local causes.
Councillor Joanne Powell-Beckett, cabinet member for housing, said: “It’s very pleasing to be shortlisted for these awards and to build on the success we had last year. Being shortlisted again shows the recognition we are receiving at a national level for all the housing work taking place across the city.
“We are committed to ensuring the city’s housing provision meets the needs of current and future residents of Stoke-on-Trent to provide a home for every stage of life. Our aim is to make Stoke-on-Trent a place where people actively choose to live and work, and we are investing millions of pounds in our housing stock to achieve this.”
Winners of the UK Housing Awards 2020 will be announced at a ceremony held at The Grosvenor Hotel in London on May 7.
Full details of all the finalists can be found here
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