Hats off to Housing Champions

Congratulations to two of our courts, extra care scheme Sycamore Hall at Bainbridge and leasehold scheme Lisbon Place, Newcastle-under-Lyne who won silver awards at the 2011 National Housing for Older People Awards. Run by the Elderly Accommodation Counsel (EAC), the awards recognise specialist housing schemes which are the best in their field. They were launched in 2010 to showcase the range of retirement living options available in the UK.

The courts were amongst 34 winners which were nominated by more than 3,500 residents from across the UK, a 64% increase on entries since last year. Using a deck of cards designed to stimulate discussions and capture satisfaction ratings, residents scored schemes on design, services and well-being.

A total of 34 schemes were crowned bronze, silver or gold medallists at the special event held at Ascot Racecourse. The 12 categories range from best housing with care by size through to best UK rural retirement housing scheme. Nearly 200 residents attended and celebrated the venue’s tradition with a best hat competition.

Scheme manager of Sycamore Hall, Michelle Mottershead said: “We’re delighted to win this award and to be part of such an important event. The residents are really proud to feedback their views and had a lot of fun taking part.”

Mick Bird, court manager of Lisbon Place added: “we all had a wonderful day – as well as a lot of fun making hats!”

Our residents told us how much they love living at their courts because they’ve made so many friends there and the staff are so friendly. They enjoyed the nomination game and think it’s great that EAC are taking the time to listen to what they think.

This is the second time that Lisbon Place has been recognised in the awards. The scheme also received a silver award last year.

Opened by John Galvin, Chief Executive of EAC with guest speaker BBC News anchorman, Nicholas Owen, the awards were attended by more than 350 guests.

John Galvin said: “We are delighted to be able to celebrate with such a wide range of winners and thank every resident who took part in the nomination process and made this day possible. These awards not only recognise excellent standards in retirement housing, but are about involving older people in shaping its future, starting with those who live in it.

“We are committed to ensuring that older people, families and their carers have access to the best possible information and the awards are one way in which we achieve this.”

The awards are supported by the Housing Learning and Improvement Network of the Department of Health’s Putting People First Programme with Nationwide Building Society and Legal & General as its core sponsors for the second year.

Housing 21 was also proud to be one of the Awards sponsors by backing the Digital Inclusion Award, presented by Director of Housing Services Paul Richards.