Charing Cross appoints West of Scotland Housing Association as Preferred Transfer Partner
Following a detailed selection process, Charing Cross Housing Association has appointed West of Scotland Housing Association (WSHA) as the preferred transfer partner.
Charing Cross, based in Glasgow, conducted a strategic options appraisal to explore the best future shape of the organisation to do more for its tenants, service users and staff.
This followed engagement with the Scottish Housing Regulator which confirmed that the organisation did not meet the regulatory standards expected of all housing associations and acceptance by Charing Cross of the extent of work that would be needed to address the failings. The Management Committee agreed to begin a competitive process to identify a suitable housing association to partner with that could offer the best offering for tenants.
As part of the partnership search, Charing Cross set out several priorities which tenants had identified as important. These included keeping rents affordable, investing in homes and the environment as well as modernising the service.
Following detailed assessment of the range of attractive proposals received, the Management Committee agreed to appoint WSHA, also based on Glasgow as its preferred partner to transfer its engagements to. Both housing associations will now start work on a joint business case to be presented to tenants as part of the formal consultation process.
Brian Gannon, chief executive of WSHA, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be chosen as Charing Cross’s preferred partner. It is a fantastic endorsement of our organisation as a modern progressive housing association that has much to offer current and future tenants.
“We know there is still a lot of hard work to come to persuade Charing Cross tenants at a ballot that we are the right choice for their future stock investment and service delivery needs.
“We look forward to working closely with Charing Cross’ Management Committee, staff and other partners to gain the support of tenants and bring about a successful transfer to WSHA.”
Julia Mulloy, Charing Cross’s chairperson, added: “Appointing WSHA as the preferred transfer partner is the first step on the journey to deliver the best possible future for our tenants, factored owners and staff team.
“We want to provide good quality homes at affordable rents and be able to maintain them and support the demands and varied needs of the community. This would be challenging if we stayed a small independent housing association, but by joining with WSHA, this will bring the scale, expertise and savings to allow us to do much more for those we are here to serve.
“This is just the beginning of the process, and we will be out consulting our tenants and residents at every step of the way. Change will only happen if tenants support it. We will be working hard to get the very best final offer agreed with WSHA and to make sure our tenants understand the changes and support them in the eventual tenant ballot.”
The Tenants Information Service has been appointed to provide independent advice to Charing Cross tenants at all stages of the process. Whilst there is a lot of work ahead to deliver the transfer plans, both organisations are hopefully that the transfer concludes around the summer of 2022.