We understand that this is a worrying time for many people and that you may be suffering from a loss of income. We know that some of you may be worried about your rent as well as other bills.
We want to reassure tenants that we will not be taking legal action to evict tenants where financial hardship is suffered as a result of coronavirus.
Those affected by coronavirus who are concerned about paying their rent can claim Universal Credit from the Department for Work and Pensions which includes support for housing costs, if eligible. The UK Government has introduced some temporary changes to make this easier.
As a not-for-profit housing association, rent is our only source of income. It enables us to pay for the services we provide. It goes towards vital repairs and improvements, not only for your home, but for other homes across Scotland. If your ability to pay rent hasn’t been affected by coronavirus and you do not pay your rent, we will follow our usual arrears procedure, which could lead to you losing your home.
We are here to support you and if you have any concerns about your ability to pay your rent, please contact us as soon as possible. The earlier we know, the sooner we can help you.
Our team is on hand to help you with any money worries. They can talk you through your situation and the options available to you, including benefits and other help and support you can access.
DWP: latest updates
Benefit advice and checkers:
With the ongoing COVID-19 situation at the forefront of everyone’s mind, we wanted to assure you that the health and safety of our tenants, other customers, contractors and staff is our absolute priority.
The commitment from ANCHO is that we will adhere to the guidance issued by Health Protection Scotland and the Scottish Government. Our employees and contractors are fully aware of their responsibilities and are undertaking the highest possible levels of health and safety to safeguard themselves, tenants and others against the risk of infection.
We have set up a dedicated Incident Management Team that is meeting daily to coordinate our response and ensure we maintain, wherever possible, our services to tenants and other customers. We aim to keep you informed, through our website, and through our Facebook page, so please check back regularly.
The latest update is:
We all understand this international crisis will likely get worse before it gets better. We greatly appreciate your support and patience while we adjust to new working arrangements. This is a fast-moving situation, we are monitoring it closely and will keep you posted. If you have any questions or ideas, please contact us. Stay safe.
Following the outbreak of the coronavirus (Covid-19), we have been closely monitoring the situation.
The health and wellbeing of our tenants is paramount, and we are taking steps, in line with UK Government and Public Health guidance, to minimise the risk to tenants and staff.
At present, the risk to ANCHO tenants and customers is considered low. However, there are a number of steps you can follow to help keep yourself and others safe.
For more information about coronavirus and how you can protect yourself, please visit NHS Inform.
The staff team at ANCHO are celebrating after being named as one of the best companies to work for in the UK.
ANCHO, as part of Cairn Housing Group alongside partners Cairn Housing Association, was named in the list of the 100 best not-for-profit employers in The Sunday Times Best Companies Awards.
The Awards recognise organisations for creating a workplace where employees feel valued and motivated.
The survey was completed by 90% of employees across Cairn Housing Group and analysed engagement across all aspects of working for ANCHO and Cairn, from relationships with managers to giving something back to the community.
Ley-Anne Forsyth, a Housing Officer in Cairn’s Inverness office, who travelled down to the award ceremony in London said: “It was inspiring to hear about other not-for-profit organisations that had also picked up an award.
“We received a special commendation for our work with tenants who have mental health issues. This is the reason we all come to work, to help our tenants as best we can, and it felt particularly special to have that recognition for our frontline teams.”
Michael Allan, Cairn’s Chairperson said: “It’s a wonderful result for the Cairn Housing Group to be counted in the top 100 best not-for-profit organisations to work for in the UK.
“We know that having engaged staff makes for a happier workplace and better services to customers. Building on these high levels of employee engagement year after year is a great achievement and acknowledges the hard work and commitment of our team.”
ANCHO’s newly elected Chairperson, Mary Black, has welcomed six new members to its voluntary Board. ANCHO recently completed a formal Governance Review and is celebrating a successful recruitment campaign which will bring extensive new skills to the Board, adding to the skills and experience of existing Members.
Mary Black, Chair of ANCHO, said:
“I am delighted to have been elected as the Chairperson of ANCHO’s Board. This is an exciting time to be part of ANCHO, with significant investment being delivered as part of the partnership with Cairn Housing Group. This is improving tenants’ homes and we have a shared determination to provide the very best possible services to our communities.
“We are extremely grateful to Dr Sonya Campbell-Perry for the contribution she made to ANCHO as our Chairperson and we wish her well for the future. We are also thankful for the service of John Rodgers, Lesley Sheppard and Sian Hughes who have stepped down as Board members.
“We have everything in place as part of Cairn Housing Group to meet the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead, and our six new colleagues will make a fabulous contribution to our work through 2020.”
Steven Travers, Leanne Stirling, Kelly Arrol, Nigel Fortnum, Colin Love and Michael Donnelly are joining the ANCHO Board and bring with them decades of collective experience in strategy development, property management, accountancy, digitisation, human resources, social enterprises and charity fundraising.
Cairn Housing Association Chairperson, Michael Allan, said:
“ANCHO’s Board is in great shape with six new members and Mary Black will lead the Association with a passion for promoting the interests of tenants and other customers. On behalf of everyone at Cairn Housing Group we are thankful to Sonya, John, Lesley and Sian for their service and we look forward to working with Mary and our new colleagues.”
ANCHO is committed to promoting additional opportunities for tenants and other customers to become Board members. Interested individuals are invited to contact ANCHO for an informal discussion about potential future board membership.
Please note that the office will be closed on Friday, 27 September 2019 and Monday, 30 September 2019 and will re-open at 9.00am on Tuesday, 1 October 2019.
If you have an emergency repair during this time please call the main office number (01294 313121) and select the appropriate option:
ANCHO, a registered social landlord and partner of the Cairn Housing Group, is the latest housing association to join the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations.
Last summer ANCHO tenants voted overwhelmingly in favour of a new constitutional partnership with Cairn Housing Association, and this move kick-started a modernisation programme of accelerated investment in existing homes and a commitment to exploring opportunities to build essential new affordable homes in North Ayrshire.
Sonya Campbell-Perry, Chair of ANCHO said:
“At ANCHO we pride ourselves on being one of Scotland’s most progressive and innovative housing associations. Our team offer a great deal of expertise to the housing sector and we’re delighted to take our place in the network of housing associations that are supported and represented by the SFHA.”
Sally Thomas, SFHA Chief Executive said:
“I’m delighted that ANCHO is joining SFHA, and we look forward to working closely with them as they embark on an exciting new phase with Cairn Housing Association.
“Their membership will further strengthen our voice in ensuring that social housing providers in Scotland make a real, tangible and long-term difference to people and places.”
In July ANCHO’s tenants voted overwhelmingly in favour of a new partnership with Cairn Housing Association. ANCHO’s shareholding members then voted unanimously in favour of the required rule changes at a Special General Meeting. Final consent for the partnership has now been received from the Scottish Housing Regulator and the Financial Conduct Authority.
This means that the new Cairn Group can now start delivering on the partnership promises made to tenants during the consultation period. This includes:
The first tangible sign of the partnership is underway with the start of an external wall insulation and reroofing programme, delivered by ANCHO with the support of the Cairn Group, in Irvine’s Castlepark estate. External wall insulation can save hundreds of pounds a year in energy bills (depending on the building design) and will go a long way to ANCHO’s target of meeting the Energy Efficiency Standard for Social Housing by December 2020.
ANCHO and Cairn are also working closely with colleagues in North Ayrshire Council to explore new build development schemes to meet local needs and contribute to the delivery of the Council’s Strategic Housing Investment Plan.
Jason MacGilp, Group Chief Executive for Cairn and ANCHO, said:
“This is an important day for Cairn, ANCHO, and our local tenants in North Ayrshire. Tenants have shown a great deal of trust in Cairn and we are determined to honour that and deliver the promises we have made. Joint working and integration planning has been in place for some time. With all consents now in place, everyone at the Cairn Group team is looking forward to the first steps in our journey together.”
Sonya Campbell Perry, ANCHO’s Chairperson, said:
“We are delighted to have started our new partnership with Cairn. Both organisations, as part of the new Cairn Group, are committed to creating thriving, well run and sustainable communities that people are proud to call home. This partnership will bring considerable benefits to ANCHO tenants.”
Jim Montgomerie, Cabinet Member for Place at North Ayrshire Council, said:
"We welcome this news and look forward to working with our partners in the months and years to come as we seek to deliver high quality housing for the residents of North Ayrshire.”
ANCHO tenants have voted overwhelmingly in favour of a new partnership with Cairn Housing Association which will deliver accelerated investment in homes and a five-year rent guarantee with services still being delivered in the local area.
The ballot closed on Friday 15 June and once counted by the independent Electoral Reform Service, 94.2% of votes were in favour of the partnership on a turnout of 60.8% which is considered exceptionally high for a ballot of this kind.
Our new partnership with Cairn guarantees an additional £4.5m in ANCHO’s homes and communities in North Ayrshire with the exciting possibility of new homes being built in the area in future.
Jackie Browne, the Chair of ANCHO’s Board, said: “We are delighted that not only have our tenants shared our vision for ANCHO but that they’ve done so in great numbers with a record breaking over 60% having their say during the ballot. We have spent over a year consulting with our tenants and we’ve always been encouraged by the strong support they had for the partnership. This is great news for our tenants and we can’t wait to start delivering on the partnership promises with our colleagues at Cairn.”
Simon Guest, the Chair of Cairn’s Board, said: “We are excited that the ANCHO tenants have backed the partnership between our two organisations. Both organisations share similar values and a dedication to providing great services and we look forward to working with our new colleagues at ANCHO and North Ayrshire Council.”
Ilene Campbell, Chief Executive of the Tenants Information Service who provided independent advice and support to ANCHO tenants, said: “ANCHO and Cairn went to great lengths to involve tenants at every step of the way and encouraged their participation in developing the partnership promises. We would like to congratulate the tenants on getting involved and coming out in great numbers to vote on the future of ANCHO.”
The results of the ballot will now be considered by the ANCHO Board and then the Scottish Housing Regulator. Shareholders of ANCHO will then be invited to approve the necessary changes to our company rules at a Special General Meeting to formalise the wishes of residents and give effect to their views on the partnership.
ANCHO and Cairn Housing Association have been discussing the exciting possibility of a new partnership, which will see ANCHO become part of a new ‘Cairn Group’.
The Scottish Housing Regulator has approved ANCHO‘s business case for the partnership and we have now issued a formal Stage 1 Consultation Notice which sets out the promises of the partnership to our tenants. We invite all tenants to read through these proposals and make representations to ANCHO by the 6th of March 2018.
The final decision on whether the partnership goes ahead will be with ANCHO tenants, through a formal ballot, in the next few months.
For more information about the benefits the partnership would bring to ANCHO and Cairn tenants, please visit our Cairn partnership page.
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Sovereign House, Academy Road,
Irvine, Ayrshire, KA12 8RL
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