BIG SUCCESS FOR THENUE AGM

Last updated: 10.41am, Thursday 13th September 2012 by

We held a highly successful Annual General Meeting which recorded a huge turnout from the community. The 32nd AGM was held in Bridgeton Community Learning Campus in Glasgow's east end on 11th September 2012.

The past year has been one of exceptional activity for the Association with a name change from its previous identity of Thenew and a multi-million-pound landmark housing development and new offices in the heart of the east end. We operate in a number of areas in Glasgow - namely Calton, Bridgeton, Dalmarnock, Cranhill, Blackhill, Castlemilk and Baillieston, and more recently in Scotstoun.

Chairperson Yvonne McShea, in her fifth and final year as Chair, told the AGM that housing associations were living in challenging times but that there was "no complacency" in the work of the organisation and that it would continue to "honour its promises" to tenants. Yvonne told the meeting that this went hand in hand with good governance and prudent financial management. Yvonne said: "This has been a year of significant activity for the Association notably the new homes and office for Thenue, the transformation of a Victorian orphanage into homes in Scotstoun in the city's west end and the continuation of housing improvements to meet the Scottish Housing Qualitu Standard. She added that Thenue's service to help tenants secure additional income had been a particular success with £207,000 obtained - up from £149,000 the previosu year, much of it in backdated payments. In addition, a new scheme had been launched called "Learning Works" to help the long-term unemployed living locally back into work, thanks to a partnership with John Wheatley College. The first students had now completed their studies and a new intake was taking place now.

Chief Executive Charlie Turner thanked Yvonne for her five years as Chair and confirmed she will continue to serve on the Management Committee. Charlie told the meeting that these are challenging times for housing associations, notably as a result of changes to benefits and how they are paid, which would lead to "added pressure on family life". Thenue has a very high proportion of tenants in receipt of benefit and the so-called "bedroom tax" which links under occupancy of properties to how much benefit will be paid to individuals had significant implications for housing providers and tenants. He told the meeting that in keeping with its policy of doing more for customers, it was opening its office later on a Tuesday night representing a 20% extension of opening hours. Charlie added: "We continue to spend money on improving our housing stock to the tune of £34 million to bring it up to Scottish Housing Quality Standard. We also remain completely committed to the concept of a community-controlled association with a management committee who are unpaid and give their time voluntarily. We think this is the best model for the work we do and the communities we serve."

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