SARH secures £20million from Barclays
STAFFORD is to see a £20million investment that will provide new homes, jobs and training opportunities.
Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) is to receive the investment from Barclays Corporate to help the not-for-profit organisation deliver significant improvements to its homes and build 129 new properties in the next four years.
SARH also plans to use the funding to help create jobs and training opportunities for local people through its learning academy.
“For Barclays Corporate to see the potential of its investment in SARH despite the very challenging economic climate is a major endorsement of the success we have achieved in our first five years,” said Karen Armitage, Chief Executive of Stafford and Rural Homes.
“It also shows confidence in our ongoing plans to make the Stafford Borough an even better place to live and work in the years ahead.”
Part of SARH’s multi-million pound improvement programme over the next four years will be to ensure every home meets the governments ‘warm homes’ standard – this includes installing better insulation and low carbon heating systems.
SARH’s Learning Academy will also provide work placements for local schools as well as nurturing the next generation of plumbers, electricians and builders through an apprenticeship scheme run in partnership with Stafford College.
The scheme has also seen SARH has link up with Staffordshire University to offer 12-month industrial placements for students.
“Our continued investment into our homes and local people is a crucial part of achieving our aim to deliver homes, communities and services where our customers can thrive,” said Karen Armitage.
Chris Huntbatch, Social Housing Team Relationship Director, Barclays Corporate, said: “This investment will allow the management team at SARH to deliver key business objectives which will deliver real benefits for local families and the local economy. Barclays Corporate is committed to using our industry expertise and specialists to support such propositions, which are vital to a prosperous economy. By really understanding the housing sector, we have been able to provide innovative solutions to support SARH both financially and professionally.
In 2006, Barclays Corporate made £40million available to help SARH achieve the Decent Homes standard by 2010.
The money was used to raise the quality of SARH’s housing stock by adding aids and adaptations and improving kitchens, bathrooms, parking, fencing, doors and windows as well as central heating and roofing.
Through careful investment SARH was able to achieve the Decent Homes standard on time and also purchase 129 homes from another housing association.
SARH also used some of the money to build 44 new homes and acquire a further 29 new homes – through mortgage rescue or off the private market – which have helped provide more much needed affordable homes for those who needed them.