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The Chartered Institute of Housing is the independent voice for housing and the home of professional standards

Delivering on asset management - TAI 2017 preview


Workshop chair Keith Edwards previews the session looking at the Mears Group and United Welsh Celtic Horizons project, the first wholly owned subsidiary model of its kind. An in depth review of a partnership providing for over 5000 properties, spanning 11 local authority areas.

Keith EdwardsThe only constant in housing in Wales in 2017 is change and there’s plenty of it about. The intense scrutiny of housing associations by the national assembly; the green shoots of new build council housing after 30 sterile years; and the ratchetting up of responsibilities on local authorities by Welsh Government to tackle homelessness and improve private rental standards. All are big strategic issues that are reshaping the way we do things on the frontline.

Factor in big external factors like continuing austerity, the roll out of universal credit, changes to local housing allowances, increases in rough sleeping and the ball of confusion that is Brexit, and the only certainty seems to be uncertainty.

Finding innovative ways of doing things is becoming the essential norm for housing providers and more crucially their staff. Not surprisingly there is renewed interest in learning from others and collaborating to share knowledge and resources to deliver in challenging times.

Celtic Horizons has been delivering asset management services for United Welsh including gas servicing, grounds maintenance, cleaning, repairs and maintenance since 2013. Based on a partnership with Mears, it now provides for over 5000 properties spanning over 11 local authority areas in South Wales.

This workshop will explore the Celtic Horizons experience to date and what lessons there are for others exploring innovative partnerships including how to involve and engage tenants, deliver targeted recruitment and training as well as providing a high quality service under unprecedented pressures.

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