Jobcentre Plus offers Flexible Advisory Services for Penkside jobseekers

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SARH is a key partner on the Penkside Project. The Project aims to address inequalities in health and wellbeing of children and families and access to employment in the Rickerscote and Silkmore areas of Stafford. One of our partners on this project is Jobcentre Plus. They have provided the following briefing note aimed at people… Read more »

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SARH bosses go back to the floor with frontline staff

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MANAGERS and directors at a Stafford housing association joined their staff on the frontline to see how they are helping customers across the borough. Stafford and Rural Homes bosses spent time working with plumbers, gas engineers, care workers, call centre staff and other teams across the organisation as part of National Customer Services Week. “We… Read more »

IoIC Awards

SARH’s website scoops regional award

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The recently redesigned website of Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) has won a major regional award for great communication. SARH received the prestigious Class Winner award in the Website/Intranet category fighting off stiff competition at this year’s Institute of Internal Communications’ North Regional Awards ceremony at the Leeds Marriott Hotel. “This award is a credit… Read more »


Gas engineer wins regional award for customer service

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Alex McGregor, 48, from Stafford, who works in the Repairs First team for SARH, has received the Institute of Customer Service Customer Champion award for the West Midlands region. “I was very proud to be nominated for this award let alone to be a winner.  I am however not the only person at SARH assisting our customers to deal… Read more »

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Young apprentices’ chance to learn their trade

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A NEW apprenticeship scheme is giving five college students the chance to become fully-qualified in their trade. Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) is working in partnership with Stafford College to create employment and learning opportunities for trainee plumbers, electricians, bricklayers and other construction apprentices, aged between 17 and 19, through its Learning Academy. One of… Read more »

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Blooming success for garden winners in competition

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GREEN-fingered residents from across the Stafford Borough are celebrating after their gardens scooped the top prizes in Stafford and Rural Homes’ garden competition. Shelia Hagan-Clay, of Swinburne Close, in Highfields, claimed the award for best back garden and Herbert Murfin, of The Uplands, in Great Heywood, took the best front garden title. “To find out… Read more »

SARH AGM 1 (2)

Double award for hard-working duo

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When judges sat down to decide the winner of Stafford and Rural Homes’ annual SARH staff ambassador award, there were two outstanding contenders. The work that Pam Smith and Debbie Williams do in helping customers was so impressive that judges couldn’t decide between the two – so they awarded them both the honour. Pam and… Read more »

SARH to provide first class Lifeline services to customers of South Staffordshire Housing Association

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OVER 4,000 elderly and vulnerable customers across South Staffordshire will benefit from around the clock support from a dedicated call centre and monitoring service. Stafford and Rural Homes’ Customer Call and Telecare services is now working with South Staffordshire Housing Association to monitor its connections across Cannock and the south of the county. Karen Foster,… Read more »

Good Neighbour winner

Good Neighbour Award 2011

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Green fingered Roy Cooper has helped keep his neighbourhood blooming with his love of gardening. Since moving to Longhope Drive in Walton when his wife died two years ago, Roy has helped his neighbours with their gardens and worked on a pergola to brighten up the Independent Living Scheme. Now Roy’s efforts have been recognised with… Read more »

New task group will help job hunters

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Residents in Penkside are being offered a helping hand to step onto the careers ladder. A new employment opportunities task group has been set up to help job hunters gain the skills needed to impress employers. The task group is setting up a jobs club that will provide courses on CV writing, interview skills, effective… Read more »

Judging Garden Competion

Residents help to judge garden competition

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GREEN-FINGERED residents from Stafford have helped to unearth some of the prettiest gardens in the borough. Four Stafford and Rural Homes customers have given up their time to judge the gardens entered in the first SARH garden competition. Husband and wife John and Jean Richardson, who live at Tithe Barn Court, were two of the… Read more »

Changes to Digital Television Services

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The Digital switchover at The Wrekin Transmitter began during April this year. On 28 September the final stages of this switchover will take place.  If you receive your digital TV Service from The Wrekin Transmitter you  may need to re- tune your Freeview, Top-Up TV or BT Vision equipment on or after this date to continue receiving… Read more »

Jeremy Lefroy MP meets with SARH chief executive Karen Armitage and volunteers, staff and partner organisations working at the Community Resource Centre.

Stafford MP praises community resource centre

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A CENTRE helping Stafford people to find employment and training been praised by a local MP during a visit on Thursday, August 25. Jeremy Lefroy MP met with customer volunteers, work placement students and staff working at Stafford and Rural Homes’ Community Resource Centre at Greyfriars. “This Community Resource Centre is a vital part of Stafford… Read more »

AGM set for Thursday 15 September

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Stafford and Rural Homes will be holding its  Annual General Meeting on Thursday 15 September 2011. This years event is entitled ‘Making a Difference’ and will feature short presentations from customers, staff and partners about the how SARH makes a difference in its communities. Notice of AGM 2011


New homes in Stafford shortlisted for national award

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THIRTEEN new homes – built on a demolished working men’s club site – have been shortlisted for a major award celebrating the country’s best affordable housing. Stafford and Rural Homes’ development at Douglas Road West, in Coton Fields, is one of three shortlisted in the ‘Best Small Development’ category of the Affordable Home Ownership Awards…. Read more »

Learning academy will open doors for people in Stafford

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A LEARNING academy is opening doors to a wide range of employment opportunities and training for the people of Stafford. The project, run by Stafford and Rural Homes, offers work experience, apprenticeships, voluntary work, industrial placements and free learning. Jo Hough, Head of Human Resources at SARH, said: “Our learning academy is all about creating opportunities for local… Read more »

TPAS National Final

Stafford residents gain national recognition

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A residents’ group in Stafford has received national recognition in a major awards ceremony celebrating outstanding efforts in the community. The Highfields Estate Residents and Tenants Association for a Good Environment (HERaTAGE) was one of three finalists shortlisted in the ‘Best Practice in the Community’ category of the Tenant Participation Advisory Service (TPAS) awards. They… Read more »

Search is on for hidden talents

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TALENTED people from the local community are being sought to share their knowledge with others. Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) is preparing the fifth edition of its Customer Learning Programme of free courses and is searching for talented customers to deliver new sessions. “If you feel you have a particular talent, passion, or are knowledgeable… Read more »

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SARH invests in community work

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Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) has added a new face to its Community Involvement Team – formerly the Customer Participation Team – as it looks to build on its already strong ties with the local communities. Christine Cartwright, 21, joins the team as a community involvement worker and her job will involve meeting customers, partners… Read more »


Stone youngsters get hooked on fishing

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YOUNGSTERS in Stone are getting hooked on fishing and helping older people keep their gardens tidy during the summer holidays. Free fishing sessions are being organised by PCSO Duncan Rollo and run by Mark Wilton, from Coarse Angling Skills Training Staffordshire (CASTS), with support from Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH). “Angling is a really fun… Read more »

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Happy 102nd birthday for Elsie

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IN 1909 British explorer Ernest Shackleton discovered the magnetic South Pole and the very first Woolworths store opened its doors. It was also the year that Elsie Heath from Blythe Bridge was born in Longton, Stoke-on-Trent. And on Tuesday, July 26,  Elsie celebrated her 102nd birthday with her nephew Peter Edwards and his wife Pat, from… Read more »

Olympic hopeful supports community sports event

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ONE of Britain’s young Olympic hopefuls is helping to organise a community games event in Stafford. Sprinter Abbi Tyson, 22, is in the 100m trials for the London 2012 games and is teaming up with Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) to organise the Meadow Games, in Penkside, on August 4. The event will take place… Read more »

Official handover of £1million housing project for disabled people

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A £1million project to create new homes for people with severe physical and learning disability has been handed over to Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH). The North Court development, on North Avenue, which includes eight specially adapted independent homes, was officially handed over to SARH by building contractor Thomas Vale on Monday, July 18, 2011…. Read more »

Martin Sawyer and Joy Pickard

SARH helps youngsters complete Prince’s Trust programme

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Young volunteers from Stafford have been given valuable employment experience from a local housing association. Stafford and Rural Homes organised two-week work placements for five Prince’s Trust volunteers as part of their 12-week programme of community work. One of the volunteers Steven Hardy spent two weeks supporting older customers living at SARH’s Oxleathers Court Independent… Read more »

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Denny enjoys tea with the Queen

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A SINGLE mum who has dedicated herself to helping others in the community has enjoyed enjoyed tea with the Queen at a special party at Buckingham Palace. Stafford and Rural Homes customer Denny Corbett was one of 5,000 lucky people to be invited to the Queen’s tea party because of her commitment to helping others… Read more »

SARH volunteer helps Stafford residents to find a job

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A weekly club has been set up to help unemployed people in Stafford to find work. Stafford and Rural Homes’ (SARH) has set up a ‘Job Club’ in partnership with Job Centre Plus at its Community Resource Centre at Greyfriars. The club is held every Monday providing the opportunity for those looking for work to receive… Read more »

Liz Pilley - Money Management Adviser

SARH successfully helps customers to plan their finances

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SARH is successfully helping more customers to manage their money and avoid financial difficulties.  SARH has one of the lowest rent arrears of any housing association in the country – accounting for just 1.17 per cent of their total rent for 2010/11.  Karen Armitage, Chief Executive of SARH, said: “Our main aim is to ensure… Read more »

SARH goes green with home improvements

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A multi-million pound investment has helped to drastically reduce the carbon footprint of hundreds of homes in Stafford.  Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) recently completed its largest programme of environmental improvements to make 341 homes in Highfields more energy efficient.   The £3.4 million Community Energy Saving Programme (CESP) – carried out in partnership with British… Read more »

Open day will showcase innovative new housing in Stafford

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New and innovative Flexicare housing schemes offering independence and support will be showcased in Staffordshire.  Our first event is hosted by Stafford and Rural Homes at Jubilee Court, Edison Road, Stafford on Wednesday, 22 June to show exactly what Flexicare housing schemes have to offer.  Also known as Extra Care, Flexicare housing is designed specifically… Read more »

Community Involvement placement up for grabs!

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SARH are seeking to recruit a trainee member of staff to work in our Community Involvement Team. This varied role will offer the opportunity to work in a fast paced and challenging environment with exposure to a variety of work place experiences. Based at our head office on Staffordshire Technology Park. The role will focus on:… Read more »

Gardening Competition – Open to All!

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If you would like to enter or need further information please contact us 0800 111 4554 or 01785 216789 Gardening Competition Application Form

Empty Home Given New Lease of Life - Keats Avenue

Empty Home Given New Lease of Life

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The three-bedroom terraced house on Keats Avenue in Highfields was obtained by Stafford Borough Council with a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) after the property had been left abandoned and the owner could not be found. SARH then purchased the property from the Borough Council in February and spent £50,000 improving it in order to provide an affordable… Read more »

SARH offers £100,000 to improve local community

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STAFFORD and Rural Homes (SARH) has set aside £100,000 to help improve neighbourhoods in the borough.  Residents are being offered the chance to bid for a share of the money that can be spent on making a positive difference within the area.  “This scheme is a prime example of how we are helping to make… Read more »


Family open the door to new home in Rising Brook

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A former garage site in Rising Brook has been transformed into 10 modern and affordable homes by Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH).  Amongst the first customers to live in one of the new homes on Hawksmoor Road is Maria Zaynoun, 31, who has lived in the local area all her life and dreamt of a new… Read more »


Rachael set to conquer Ben Nevis for charity

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A STAFFORD woman who has had two kidney transplants is appealing for support as she prepares to tackle Ben Nevis. Rachael Cook, 32, who works in the finance department for Stafford and Rural Homes, is taking on Britain’s tallest mountain to help raise money for Kidney Research UK.  “The work that Kidney Research UK does… Read more »


Official opening for new mural

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A NEW mural created by students from a Stafford High School to give a wall of local garages a new lease of life has been officially unveiled.  Students from Sir Graham Balfour School, on North Avenue, teamed up with Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) and other members of their community to revamp an outdated piece of artwork on… Read more »


Youngsters help silver surfers ride internet wave

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YOUNGSTERS in Stafford have been helping the over 55s to learn computer skills as part of National Silver Surfers Week and Adult Learning Week. Children from Parkside Primary School visited Stafford and Rural Homes customers at Gough and Crispin Close Independent Living Scheme, in Tillington, for a ‘Silver Surfers’ Day on Friday, May 20. Customers… Read more »

Helping hand for new residents

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People moving into Stafford are being offered handy information to help them settle into the community. Stafford and Rural Homes – which owns and manages over 5,600 homes – has launched ‘Community Information Sheets’ for its new customers.  The information includes contact details for local doctors, post offices and schools.  The sheets also contain information… Read more »

investor in excellence

SARH awarded for excellence

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A Stafford housing association has received national recognition for its all-round excellent performance. Stafford and Rural Homes has been awarded with the prestigious Investors in Excellence Standard for demonstrating a high standard in all areas of its performance. Karen Armitage, Chief Executive of SARH, said: “The achievement of this award at our first attempt is… Read more »

SARH holds ‘Tea and Talk’ Language Sessions

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Residents who speak little or no English are getting help to improve their language skills. Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) – in partnership with Stafford Children’s Centre – are running ‘Tea and Talk’ sessions for people who do not speak English as their first language. The sessions take place at Stafford Children’s Centre in Farraday… Read more »

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