Latest news

Supporting Dementia Action Week

Dementia Action Week logo Working as a Truly Modern Dementia Friendly Housing Association. 

This week Platform will be promoting and supporting the National Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Action Week.   

We will be launching our Dementia Friendly Strategy as part of our Platform Together diversity and inclusion work, focusing on raising awareness, understanding and thinking about what we can do better to support people to live well with dementia. 

Become a Dementia Friend - So far 620 of our colleagues have signed up to be Dementia Friends, a Dementia Friend is somebody that learns about dementia so they can help their community.  

If you would like to become a Dementia Friend click on the link at the top of our homepage.  It will take you through to the Dementia Friends website, an Alzheimer’s Society initiative.   

Look out for our Dementia Friendly Strategy launching next week.

Read Supporting Dementia Action Week…

Affordable housing development completed in Nottingham

Platform Housing Group has finalised 17 new homes on the outskirts of Nottingham city centre. It's our first development within the area, offering 2 and 3 bedroom homes for rent.

The Spices scheme at Woolaton Vale cost £2.5million and was made possible by grant funding from Homes England and also Group funds.

Those involved in the new development include the developer MyPad - a boutique property development company based in the Midlands offering quality and contemporary new build homes - employer’s agent Richard Morris Associates and architect Paul Gaughan Building Consultants; the local authority is Nottingham City Council.

Jessica Thomas, Project Manager at Platform Housing Group said: “This is a lovely scheme on the outskirts of Nottingham and is our first development for Nottingham City Council. The scheme has enabled a number of customers to have security of tenure having been in temporary accommodation beforehand. This has been particularly important during the pandemic as it gives customers peace of mind knowing they don’t have to worry about vacating a property and can now put down some roots in the local area.”

Work started on the urban brownfield site – which was formerly a restaurant - in May 2020 with construction complete in April 2021.  All the homes are now let.

The new development meets the demand for much needed family housing in the city where private renting can be unaffordable.

For further information on the scheme please contact Jessica Thomas, Project Manager at Platform Housing Group at customer.services@Platformhg.com.

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Building a Truly Modern Housing Association

We have a new Corporate Strategy that will allow us to build on our strong legacy and create an organisation which will be fit for the future needs of our customers, colleagues and communities.

Our exciting new strategy shapes our business and drives our priorities for the next 5 years as we work to realise our ambition to become a truly modern housing association. Find out more...

Our Corporate Strategy 2021-2026 Building a Truly Modern Housing Association.pdf [pdf] 162KB

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Platform achieves top regulatory rating

Platform Housing Group, the largest housing association in the Midlands, has achieved a G1/V1 rating from the Regulator for Social Housing following its first in-depth assessment – or IDA – in February of this year; this is the highest regulatory rating a housing association can achieve with a G1 governance and V1 for financial viability.

The IDA outcome confirms that the regulator is fully assured that the social landlord’s financial plans supports its financial strategy and has confidence in the way it manages and governs the business. This is the first IDA that the housing association has had since its creation in 2019.

Elizabeth Froude, the group’s Chief Executive said: “It is really positive news that the Regulator has recognised the focussed way in which we have restructured both our Board and our Executive team, providing strong skills and expertise aligned to our new corporate strategy.  We are absolutely delighted with the result.  It demonstrates that Platform is in great shape to deliver our ambitious strategic plans as well as maximising any additional forthcoming opportunities and challenges for the benefit of our customers.

“The increase in our house building programme, whilst maintaining a clear commitment to high levels of affordable homes, reduction in our operating costs and the funding we’ve attracted  - including our Homes England strategic partnership and the £350million raised through the bond market – have all helped to achieve this.  We continue to drive forward on delivering all the aims of our merger and can clearly demonstrate that we are making good progress.”

Over the next five years, Platform Housing Group aims to build around 12,000 high quality new homes, improve the energy efficiency of many more homes to alleviate the fuel poverty burden on our residents and deliver services which support the health and well being of its customers.

Elizabeth concluded: “Platform Housing Group is highly committed to continuous improvement in all the services we deliver.  However, we can’t do this alone, hence why we value the calibre and professionalism of our people, the strength of our stakeholder partnerships and the unwavering commitment of our involved customers, to achieve all that we do.”

Platform Housing Group – which owns 46,000 homes in total – completed 1,448 homes in 2019/20 (1,598 in 2018/19) at an investment of £258m (£228m in 2018/19). The Group also built more social rented homes – at a figure of 981 – during the past 2 years in England than any other provider, 523 in 2019/20, almost 33% of the total homes built.

Platform Housing Group’s operating area is from Herefordshire in the West to the Lincolnshire coast in the East, and from the Derbyshire Dales in the North to the Cotswolds in the South.

Read Platform achieves top regulatory rating…

Affordable housing development completed near Birmingham

Platform Housing Group – which has its headquarters in the Midlands – has finalised 10 new homes in the Royal Town of Sutton Coldfield. It's our latest development within the area, which offers 3 bedroom homes for shared ownership.

The Padstone Drive scheme - just off Douglas Road – cost £3.1million and was made possible by grant funding from Homes England and also Group funds.

Those involved in the new development include the developer and architect Village Partnerships Ltd, employer’s agent and construction, design and management advisor Baily Garner LLP; the local authority is Birmingham City Council.

Matthew Topping, Regional Development Manager at Platform Housing Group explained: “These new homes in Sutton Coldfield form a high quality and sustainable affordable housing development that will meet the needs of local people. Our homes and communities have become increasingly important to us during the last year; and this development of shared ownership homes will help provide local people an affordable route to home ownership."

Work started on the site – which was formerly garages and caravan storage - in August 2019 with construction complete last month. All the homes are now either sold or reserved.

Mark Fitzpatrick, Managing Director of Village Partnerships said: “We have a strong and well established relationship with Platform Housing Group and were delighted to be appointed to deliver this much needed housing scheme in Sutton Coldfield. We are all justifiably proud of the outcome and look forward to working with Platform in the future.”

The new development is less than 1 mile away from Sutton Coldfield town centre and local amenities including shops, retail, schools, bars, restaurants and parks.

To register interest in a home please contact Platform Home Ownership at platformhomeownership.com or by emailing sales@platformhg.com.

For further information on the scheme please contact Matt Topping, Regional Development Manager at Platform Housing Group on 07958 805114 or email him at Matthew.Topping@Platformhg.com.

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Digital Time Capsule Launched

An initiative which aims to provide a snapshot of people’s experiences during the pandemic has been launched.

Platform’s digital time capsule received submissions from across the country, including Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Worcestershire; they included images, poems and films.

We’re encouraging people to visit the project which ran from November 2020 until last month.

The memories will be visible online for one month starting on Wednesday 21 April; on 21 May, the page will be ‘buried’ and then uncovered again on 21 May 2024.

Tim Marsh, Digital Transformation Office at Platform Housing Group said: “The year 2020 will go down in history as one of the most difficult years many of us have lived through. We therefore decided to take a snapshot of the year, recording the experiences of Platform customers, local schools, Board members and our own colleagues in the form of photos, poems, art, letters and films in an online digital time capsule which will be buried for 3 years and then dug up in 2024.”

People can access the time capsule on our website, here.

Tim concluded: “Our Communities team is all about engaging with our customers; with the onset of COVID-19 we couldn’t do this in the normal way. Encouraging people to create their own memories of this time has been deeply moving.  It has also been fascinating to see how talented and imaginative our customers and colleagues have been. Our hope now is that when we reveal the digital time capsule in 2024, the world will be a very different one.”

For further information please contact Tim Marsh, Digital Transformation Officer at Platform Housing Group on 01905 670109 or email him at Tim.Marsh@platformhg.com.

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Platform appoints its first wellbeing fund project manager

Platform Housing Group has appointed Emma Lloyd to head up its wellbeing fund.

The appointment comes hot on the heels of Platform announcing the launch of extra funds to the tune of £1.4million to support people within its communities.

Emma – who has worked in various roles within the Group since 2017 - has witnessed the direct impact of financial hardship on customers’ lives having worked closely with housing officers and income officers amongst others.

Emma explained: “This is a really exciting opportunity for me both personally and professionally. Being involved in a project that is going to have such a positive impact on so many lives and communities is very humbling.  The fund is of particular importance at the moment, after the unprecedented year we have all experienced. I look forward to helping to resolve many of the issues that have been thrust upon so many due to the pandemic.”

Emma’s role will be responsible for the Group’s newly established wellbeing fund for 2021/22; its success will be demonstrated by supporting customers and communities who are experiencing disadvantage and hardship, improving their wellbeing by developing new opportunities.

Michael Bruce, Director of Platform Hub and Income Management at Platform Housing Group said: “We are delighted to appoint Emma to head up our wellbeing fund.  Emma has a wealth of hands on experience with our customers as well as all the enthusiasm and empathy that the role requires. The fund itself is flexible and is designed to recognise that customers have many needs that go beyond the homes we provide, focussing on financial and emotional support that makes a tangible difference to local lives.”

The aim of the fund - which was originally launched in 2020 – is to provide fast and flexible support to customers during challenging times; the fund can help cover the cost of food, essential items such as school uniforms, energy and utility costs as well as helping to bridge the gap between a benefit application and the first payment.

The fund also offers support packages for employment and training, household furniture, digital inclusion and health and wellbeing.

Established in 2020, the fund has already provided more than £173,000 of immediate and practical help in the form of payments to cover fuel and water costs, benefits delays and other essentials.  

For further information please contact Emma Lloyd, Wellbeing Fund Project Manager, on 0333 200 7304 or email her at wellbeingfund@platformhg.com.

To apply for extra support customers should visit the Wellbeing Fund section of our website.

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Kitchen refurbishments for customers

Platform Housing Group has announced a kitchen refurbishment programme, following on from a recent customer consultation survey.

Platform will start work modernising 750 kitchens from spring this year, with the expectation of increasing these numbers over the coming years.

The survey was conducted during February, with a 92 per cent response rate, covering Lincolnshire, Worcestershire, Nottinghamshire, Herefordshire, Derbyshire, West Midlands, Leicestershire and Rutland.

Riccardo Frumenzi, Operations Manager at Platform Housing Group explained: “This is the first time we have undertaken such a detailed survey; as such we have gained real customer insight.  We have been delighted with the feedback and the fact that our customers have embraced the choices on offer.”

After the consultation process the customers have chosen the following improvements: modern high line cupboards, drawer packs, a bowl and a half sink as standard and mixer taps. Customers have also chosen to have the option of a larder unit instead of wall cupboards.  All design options are available as the customer requires them, these include various kitchen styles, worktop colours, paints, flooring and tiles.

The project is a partnership between Platform and leading kitchen manufacturer/designer: Howdens Joinery, over the next 4 years.

Neil Francombe, Regional Contracts Manager at Howden Joinery said: “We are extremely pleased to be involved in this revised programme of works.  We understand our obligation as a supply partner with Platform Housing and what they expect from us in terms of value and expertise. They’re commitment to customer service and delivering quality is something we are proud to be part of. Our contracts division will support Platform and their customers throughout and look to further strengthen our relationship as we deliver this exciting new kitchen offer.”

Each individual kitchen will take in the region of a week to install. The team will work with individual customers to minimise disruption, ensure any temporary arrangements are safe and workable and reinstate all mains appliances as quickly as possible.

Riccardo concluded: “As part of our journey to become a truly modern housing association, we want to ensure that our homes are high quality ones.  Our kitchen project will be delivered with the customer in mind, offering them tailored and modern kitchen choices for their homes.”

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