8976A New Charter Newsletter Winter 2012_v5__ 21/12/2012 16:49 Page 1
news Your NEW LOOK magazine from New Charter
Winter issue: Jan 2013 Created by New Charter tenants like you
Let us help you stay aďŹ‚oat
4 Improving the way we let our homes
6 Helping to 'Fix It' for you
Local chef Paul serves up winter warmers
2 for 1 tea/coffee voucher inside! Page 12-13
81 Blooming success for residents!
ALSO INSIDE: Your new local history page, 'Years gone by'
8976A New Charter Newsletter Winter 2012_v5__ 21/12/2012 16:50 Page 2
Welcome from your Customer Communications Group Happy NewYear everyone and welcome to the first issue of your magazine for 2013! As a group, we’ve been working on the magazine for a year. We feel more involved now and are pleased with how it’s looking.We hope you like it too. In August, we chose a new company to design and produce our magazine.With a new design and by working well together, we feel we’re getting a better balance with content. We all have different views but we’re always prepared to throw our ideas in and have lively discussions! Why not come and join us and get involved too? One of the members of the group, Lez, shares his favourite recipe with you on page 22. Do you have a favourite recipe you’d like to share? Call the Communications team on 0161 331 2206 or email email@example.com
Home care provider joins New Charter Group Home care provider Tameside Home Services has joined New Charter. The service provides ‘home-help’ to older and vulnerable people with daily tasks such as housework, laundry and shopping. It also supports people by taking them to appointments. The service is available to carers too who support elderly relatives with practical and domestic tasks. Financial support from the Government was due to end soon, so New
Charter is supporting the service so it can continue to provide quality home care for residents. A referral or request needs to be made for anyone interested in the service.We can arrange home visits to discuss your individual needs. For more information, please call Pam or Kath on 0161 331 2288.We look forward to hearing from you.
Your Customer Communications Group (One of the members of the group, Moira, was not present for the photo)
You can also contact us through your TV
Looking Local is our interactive digital TV service for customers. You can view available properties, find out about upcoming events and much more. Sky: Channel 539 Virgin: Channel 233 Online: www.lookinglocal.gov.uk/ newcharterhousingtrust You can then access our pages through our Quick code 246 For more information, just give us a call.
Look for this icon: If you have a smartphone you can also find more information on our website by scanning this barcode with a QR code reader app.
2 The Communications team at New Charter writes your newsletter. You can contact them on 0161 331 2470.
8976A New Charter Newsletter Winter 2012_v5__ 21/12/2012 16:50 Page 3
Contents Update from your SWAT team
Helping residents back into work
Improving the way we let our homes 6
Swapping your home
Helping to ‘Fix It’ for you!
Green Charter news
Your new neighbourhood plans
A blooming success!
Topaz Tea Rooms
2 for 1 voucher for Topaz Tea Rooms!
Aged 14-19 and want to make a difference?
Manchester United boss teaches
students a lesson in business
Customer satisfaction survey
Resident stars shine bright
Update from your Tenant
Don’t forget, you can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter
Management Team (TMT)
Years gone by
Keeping safe and warm in winter
How we’re doing
Events and classes
facebook.com/newcharterhomes @NewCharterGroup 3
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Update from SWAT We’ve set up a Specialist Welfare Reform Advice Team (SWAT) to offer advice and support to tenants affected by the beneﬁt changes. ● SWAT has visited more than 750 households to explain the changes and offer advice. Thousands of postcards and leaflets have also been given out. ● The team has focused on tenants who will be classed as having ‘spare bedrooms’ and will be affected by the Bedroom Tax from April. ● SWAT is suggesting different options to tenants to help them cope with the changes.This could include moving to a smaller home, registering on Homeswapper or taking in a lodger. ● The team has referred around 150 tenants for extra support e.g debt/welfare/budgeting advice and also downsizing their home. SWAT is continuing to contact all tenants affected by the Government’s changes. Look out for them in your neighbourhood and if you think you may be affected, call us now on 0161 331 2000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org Visit our blog and share your story. Someone could be in the same position as you and you can help each other. www.newcharterhomes.co.uk /welfare-reform/swat-blog
Benefit calculators are available on our website 4
The SWAT team Some tenants have become ‘SWAT champions’ and are helping to spread the word to other residents. Dave is a SWAT champion and he told us what he’s being doing: Dave Pinnock, resident SWAT champion
I’ve been telling other residents about the changes and telling them to get advice and contact the SWAT team. I’m careful as I know it can be difﬁcult to talk about but a lot of people are turning a blind eye and don’t think it will happen. We need to get the message out there. I will be affected by the changes and will have to pay for my ‘spare bedroom.’ I’m looking to move to a smaller home and hope something comes up soon.
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CONFUSION STREET Are you confused and want to know more about...? • Moving or swapping your home • Understanding Bedroom Tax and Universal Credit • How your Neighbourhood Co-Ordinator can help you • Debt/welfare/budgeting advice
Join us on Saturday 9th February between 10am - 3pm at New Charter's head office for a special edition of New Charter's 'Confusion Street' soap opera! For more information or to register your interest, contact the SWAT team on 0161 331 2000 or email SWAT@newcharter.co.uk
Helping residents and young people back into paid work In the last nine months, New Charter has helped 58 people back into paid work as part of our GREAT Opportunities programme. We support local residents to find work by helping them to develop skills and experience through volunteering, work placements, apprenticeships and work clubs. Since April 2012, 32 people have started three-year apprenticeships through the programme. Nine other people aged 18 - 25 have secured paid employment after taking part in eight-week voluntary placements at New Charter, supported by Jobcentre Plus.
“I decided to apply because it gave me a chance to get some work experience on my CV while I try and find a paid job. It’s also given me interview experience and I’m hoping that the skills I’ve developed on the placement will help me move onto work.” Ten people have been successful in getting paid jobs as a result of advice and support from our community work clubs. Contact the regeneration team for more information at email@example.com
20-year-old Connie Liu from Ashton volunteered with our regeneration team. Connie has been looking for paid work since March after completing NVQs in Business Administration. Connie said: “I’ve found it really hard to get into work after finishing my studies and training as most employers are looking for somebody with one or two years’ work experience.
Connie volun teering at a children’s eve nt
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We’re improving the way we let our homes At the moment we have more than 8,000 applications on our waiting list and more than 1,000 tenants are looking to move to another property. We receive around 450 new applications every month and we currently have an ‘open waiting list’ in which anyone can apply for a home. We don’t have enough homes for all of these people so we are taking a look at what we can do differently to help our customers.
Why are we changing the system? There are many people on our waiting list who never bid on our homes or are not in desperate need of housing. Some customers may have a better chance of being housed elsewhere, so we’re looking at providing more advice too.
We need to manage this list better so that we can help the people who need our homes most.
Positive community work The biggest change we are proposing is rewarding people for their positive work in our communities.With the new system, people will have a good chance of being housed if they can show the positive things they can bring to our neighbourhoods. For example, this could mean people are rewarded for doing great volunteer work or being a registered carer. We hope the new system will encourage people to have more of a positive impact on our communities and help to make them better places for us to live and work in. We also hope it will help people to become active members of the community where they want to stay for life.
The new system will involve four stages: ● First checks of the customer to make sure they are eligible for our homes ● Looking at suitable types of homes for the customer ● Assessments and placing customers in a ‘band’ ● Customers offered a suitable home based on waiting time Applicants will be placed in a ‘band’ - gold, silver or bronze, and this will be done according to their needs and their positive impact on their community. Customers will also be given priority based on the date they were placed in the band. We will support people and direct them to other housing options if they have a better chance of securing a home through other methods and services. By doing this, we will help to improve people’s chances of getting a home. We’ll tell you more about how the new system will work in the next newsletter. Also check our website and social media pages for more updates.
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Swapping your home can reduce your rent and bills New Charter is registered with Homeswapper - a scheme in which tenants can swap homes with each other anywhere in the country.
The service is free to you as a New Charter tenant. With the benefit changes coming, moving to a Swapping smaller home could homes could really help you. reduce your (Read more about rent and bills. the benefit changes in the leaflet enclosed).
Interested in swapping your home?
Come along to our 'speed dating' style event and meet other tenants wishing to swap. The event is part of 'Confusion Street' on Saturday 9th February at our head ofﬁce - see page 5.
Go to www.homeswapper.co.uk and log in. ● Provide as much detail as you can of your existing property and also the type of property you want. ● If you include pictures of your home inside and out, you’re more likely to get an exchange. ● Remember to log in regularly and check your matches - new properties are registered daily. For more information, contact the Relets team on 0161 331 2000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also call into our Hubs for help.
121 New Charter tenants have successfully moved house through Homeswapper in the last 12 months. 922 more are registered for an exchange.
Don’t let matters snowball ! The team at your local Home & Community Hub is here to help you. We can give you advice and support on many matters, however large or small. Here are just a few of the things we can help you with: Under your roof Tenancy advice, name change, consent to carry out alterations, antisocial behaviour, rent, housing benefit, referrals for debt advice, repairs, gas service appointments, gas safety, complaints, damp and condensation.
You and yours Aids and adaptations, CVs, getting back into work, pets, home contents insurance, getting involved with New Charter, volunteering, budgeting. On the move Ending your tenancy, moving to a smaller home, swapping homes, housing applications, bidding on properties.
And just for fun Around 4500 customers visit us each month. Many of them join in our free prize draws, quizzes and celebrate cultural events and charity days with us. You’ll never hear us say we can’t help! For our opening hours please see the back page of this newsletter.
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Helping to ‘Fix It’ for you! Our very own Mr Fix It has been busy making a real difference for many customers by helping with small jobs around the home. We all have small jobs that need doing at home, which we don’t seem to get round to doing or simply put off due to cost. This is where we can Fix It for you! Our service offers you a skilled tradesperson with the right tools and knowledge to help you with a range of jobs, at a reasonable cost. Anthony (Mr Fix It) can help with putting up shelves and curtain rails, building flat pack furniture and even changing light bulbs. While we can’t carry out major work like roofing or plumbing, we
Anthony help ing Miss Be nnett with so me flat-pack furniture
can help with all those small jobs that you’ve been meaning to do for ages or struggle with on your own. It doesn't matter how small the job is, we're here to help. The cost of the service is £17 per hour.
You can have a number of jobs done in the hour to make the most of your money. By using our service, you have the security of knowing a member of our own staff is in your home, not an unknown tradesperson. Mr Fix It has all the right tools for your jobs, you will just need to provide the materials. Anthony has been getting great feedback from customers who’ve used the service and everyone’s recommended Mr Fix It.
To ﬁnd out more or make an appointment, contact Fix It on 0161 331 2000 or email ﬁxit@newcharter.co.uk 8
Miss Bennett previously lived in another New Charter home for 30 years and has just downsized. She has used the Fix It service to help her settle in, and told us what she thought: I called Anthony and he came to visit me the next day and booked in the work for just a few days later. I found him very helpful and the service was prompt. Fix It is a good service and it’s helped me to make my property feel like my home. As the service is provided by New Charter, I know that if anything goes wrong, they will help me to sort it.
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Green Charter has completed its ﬁrst grass cutting season Since the service started in March, we have battled with the weather! According to your feedback, 68% of you agreed we’d made a good start. We have spent the winter reviewing your feedback and feel we’ve made a solid start, but could do better. We’ve been looking at the service at our sheltered schemes and we are confident you’ll see things improve this year. This year, we are also going to introduce some new machinery to provide a more efficient service.The teams have settled in well and generally they will remain the same - you may see just a few changes. If you have any concerns or simply want to pass on positive feedback, speak to a member of your team. The teams have had lots of training on their new machinery, got trailer licences, and four staff now have licences to chemically inject difficult weeds, like Japanese Knotweed. Before
hich snap Lane w w e D n o a re ts are ed up this a spot. Residen t o We’ve clean h g in p p ti y a flyrea. was previousl w it’s transformed the a o dh really please After
During the winter we carried out winter pruning. All shrub beds received a prune and a decent layer of wood chippings to help manage the weeds. All of our footpaths and drying areas have been tidied up and all hedges have had a winter cut. We're all hoping for a good (and dry!) 2013.
A new service for your own gardens Are you struggling to manage your garden or maybe gardening just isn’t your passion? Don't worry, we can help! From this month, Green Charter is expanding to launch its own low cost gardening service for you. Customers who are most in need of our help, such as older people or vulnerable residents will be given priority. Please call us on 0161 331 2000 for an appointment or to find out more.
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ew Your n rhood ou b h g i e n re plans ea! her Each of our 32 new neighbouhoods now has its own plan. These plans will run for three years and we’ll review our progress each year with residents like you.You have helped us get to this point and we’re very grateful for your support. To make sure that your plans are delivered well, we’ve had a move round in our teams, so you may see some new faces in your area.We know that some of you would like to work with the same team, but we also know that it’s good to refresh things so that you get all the benefits of our GREAT people. There will no longer be Neighbourhood Management Assistants and Officers we’ve created a new post of one dedicated Neighbourhood Co-Ordinator for each area.This table tells you who your Co-ordinator will be and they should be your first point of contact they are there for you.
We're ofﬁcially launching the new plans on Thursday 31st January in a fun event at your local Hub. You'll receive your own star card very soon! There'll be hot soup for everyone and a free prize draw to win £150! - ideal just after Christmas. 10
Lyndon Pugh & Mina Begum
Jonathan Plumb & Khadeja Begum
Carrbrook & Millbrook
Simon Blomeley & Sarah Chilton
Hattersley & Longdendale
Steve Rider & Sarah Stuart
Hillgate, Hilton & Ladbrooke
Michelle Stafford & Haley Marsden
Smallshaw & Broadoak
Michelle Carr & Sara Kenworthy
St Peters & Guide Bridge
Stanhope St Annes
Dianne Wood & Paul Willmore
Waterloo & Lordsfield
Waterton & Fox Platt
YewTree Farm & Pendle Road
8976A New Charter Newsletter Winter 2012_v5__ 21/12/2012 16:56 Page 11
A blooming success! Hundreds of residents and staff worked tirelessly throughout the year to make their gardens and communities look bright and beautiful. Many groups entered the In Bloom competition and your hard work was rewarded! Here are the results…
Improving Award Waterton Estate Residents’ Association New Charter Academy
Developing Award (Level 3) Grange House Micklehurst Estate Residents’ Association,The Laurels
Thriving Award (Level 4) Friends of Crowswood Action Group Garden Walk Residents’ Association The Newton Group
Outstanding Award (Level 5)
Brushes Estate Management Board Central Residents Action Group Dixon/Forrest Road Gardening Group Hindley Close Micklehurst Estate Residents’ Association - Muddy Buddies St Anne’s Mews Yew Tree and Pendle Road Residents’ Group
Best Small Neighbourhood Award Micklehurst Estate Residents’ Association - Muddy Buddies
Best Overall Award
Muddy Bud dies - our Be st Overall community garden
vely s – a lo n e d r a G Ashurst l garden a n commu
Micklehurst Estate Residents’ Association - Muddy Buddies
Ashurst Gardens Audenshaw Community Association
f hear t o e h t in den ld ral' gar A 'Cent state, Dukinfie e Central
Big congratulations to everyone involved - you did your communities proud
Pretty troughs at New ton
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Come along to Topaz Tea Rooms for a brew or a homemade winter warmer Many of you may know the Topaz café in Ashton, but did you know there's now a new sister cafe called Topaz Tea Rooms in Dukinﬁeld too? Located in Beatrix House on Gorse Hall Road, the new café opened as part of our new development in August.The café is open for residents and the public to enjoy. Topaz Tea Rooms is open Monday to Friday and everything they serve is homemade from scratch.There’s breakfast, snacks, sandwiches and even hot meals on offer, including traditional favourites like sausage and mash or cheese and onion pie.
For more information contact
or visit us online at togmind.org
Monday - Thursday 10am-4.30pm Friday 10am-3pm
Paul’s story Paul, Chef manager at the Tea Rooms has his roots firmly set in catering and his family has connections to the area dating back to 1917. His family used to own the Dog & Partridge pub in the Waterloo area of Ashton. Many generations of Paul's family stood behind the bar and in total they clocked up 94 years between them! So in late 2011, it was time for a change. A few months later, Paul saw the job at the Tea Rooms advertised on the TOGMind Twitter page. No sooner had he applied, he started working at the café and has never looked back.
Paul, Chef manager at the Tea Rooms makes homemade meals and snacks every day
Paul said: “I really enjoy my job, meeting different people and I like cooking for others. I feel like I’m doing something to help people and that makes me happy. A lot of the residents have dementia and as we’re on hand, we see them regularly and let staff know if we notice anyone struggling or anything that's not quite right. In the pub, I always used to look after vulnerable people so I’m used to being around people. I find it very rewarding at the café and working here gives me a purpose. I can also continue the family legacy of cooking which I enjoy.”
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Amy’s story Amy is the Café assistant chef. She originally volunteered at the Topaz café in Ashton and through working there she was offered the job at the Tea Rooms at Beatrix House. Amy used to work in supported housing with young people and offenders. She fancied a career change and had always enjoyed catering.
Amy says: “Volunteering was a good way for me to get experience and lead me onto a job. I like meeting the customers and learning how to work in a busy kitchen. It’s nice to build up a relationship with residents and see them enjoy using the café.”
Amy making a freshly-brewed cappuccino (The café serves Fairtrade tea and coffee)
Interested in volunteering?
Topaz Café Tea Rooms is looking for more volunteers.Volunteering can be a great way to build your confidence, meet people, help you get into work like Amy. Volunteering at the café is suitable for anyone with a genuine interest in cooking and working with the public. It doesn’t matter if you’ve got any experience or not.
What you can do:
What you get back:
• • • • • • •
• • • • •
Assist with the running of a community café Experience waiting on tables Learn about cleaning and hygiene Help with washing up Work with the public Food preparation Cooking all types of foods
Free training On-going support in your role Build your own CV with real experience Satisfaction in helping others Work with a reputable charity
Buy a cup of tea or coffee and get another FREE! S
Y TH I
Remember to tear out your voucher and take it with you
Topaz tearoom is run by Mind as a non-profit business and any surplus funds are re-invested into the charity.
Topaz Café Tea Rooms • Beatrix House • Gorse Hall Road • Dukinfield • SK16 5HN Terms and conditions apply. Offer available on a standard tea or coffee on production of this voucher.
8976A New Charter Newsletter Winter 2012_v5__ 21/12/2012 17:09 Page 14
Are you aged 14-19 a nd want to make a d ifference?
Join our Youth Forum and help change things that matter to young people. The group meet every few weeks to help improve New Charter’s services for young people in our communities.The group is looking at how we can make New Charter’s website more interesting to young people and we’ll also be looking at our social media pages soon. We always meet on a Wednesday at New Charter's head office from 56.30pm and have drinks and snacks, including pizza. Want to join us? Call, text or email Chris on 07718 783 104 or email@example.com Follow us on Facebook or Twitter to find out more, we’d like to hear your views.
Everyone enjoying pizza at our last meeting!
’ e s o o h C u o ‘Y ts c e j o r p t a e r g ‘You Choose’ is a council-run scheme in which residents bid for funding for community projects.The money comes from the council’s savings on landfill costs due to residents recycling their rubbish.The more you recycle, the more money you get back. Many of your residents’ groups have been successful with their bids and together have gained over £11,000 to fund community growing projects, workshops and fun events and set up a Tool Bank. One team has even secured funding to teach young people to play musical instruments as part of a Samba band. For more information, visit www.tameside.gov.uk/youchoose
Next meeting dates: 9th January
23rd January 6th February 20th February
6th March 20th March 3rd April
Be a Cancer Champion Macmillan Cancer Support and The Christie are working together on a project to raise awareness of breast, lung and bowel cancer in the region. The project is encouraging people to visit their GP if they notice any changes to their body. Macmillan need volunteers. New Charter staff and residents are getting involved and are attending local groups/events to deliver cancer awareness messages. Want to get involved? Find the leaflet in the Neighbourhoods & Communities section of our website or call the regeneration team to find out more.
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Manchester United boss teaches students a lesson in business Students got down to business with Manchester United Football Club’s chief executive, David Gill as he ofﬁcially launched a partnership at New Charter Academy. David met GCSE and A-level students who asked him questions about getting started in business. He also talked to the pupils about his time at the club. It was a fantastic opportunity for the students to talk to the boss of a world-famous club. The new three-year partnership is part of the Manchester United Foundation’s Hub of the Community programme which is helping young people to develop major life skills such as leadership,
team work and positive behaviour. A dedicated coach from the David Gill w ith Foundation Jonathan M students (L-R) Abigail W poyi, Saman elsh, Dylan C tha Rutter is based at oady, the Academy to train young people in sport.The coach get teenagers thinking about will also work with local primary schools on community projects.The different career paths. programme will promote business opportunities through sport and
Family of son killed on night out helps teenagers to see dangers of drinking Adam was 24 when he was tragically killed in Blackburn in June 2009 after trying to stop an argument between one of his friends and a stranger, all of whom had been drinking. He was punched for trying to calm the situation and suffered fatal head injuries. Ever since,Adam’s family have been campaigning to raise awareness of the dangers of drinking.They teamed up with drama group Theatrebus and New Charter to tell young people about Adam's story and help prevent others from getting into trouble from drinking. New Charter funded Theatrebus to visit nine schools across Tameside.They performed a piece of drama for students as part of interactive and emotive workshops showing the dangers of alcoholrelated violence.
Adam’s story has helped teenagers to understand how alcohol mixed with violence can have devastating results on real life people and families.
Adam’s brother Tim speaking to students at Alder High School 15
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Customer satisfaction survey - listening to you In our last magazine, we told you that based on your feedback, 94% of you are satisfied with our services. This is a great result but we’re always looking to do more. In October we met with tenants to help with our business planning for the next year. Here’s what you’ve said we need to work on:
Value for money
• Look at providing more advice and support on energy bills • Help people to stay in their homes for longer • Look at the services which involve a charge
• Look at how new tenants are vetted • Use quicker enforcement processes
Repairs service • Make sure repairs are done right first time • Make it easier to report external repairs • Make sure tenants are aware of the policy on recharging for repairs
Neighbourhoods • Carry on making improvements with Green Charter • Do more for the environment on estates, particularly with litter and fly-tipping • Look at facilities for young people and children
Quality homes • Finish off the investment programme - making improvements to your homes • Make sure empty properties are upgraded
In future issues of your magazines, we’ll update you on the changes we’re making as a result of your feedback.
National Customer Service Week
Here’s a snapshot of things you said we’re doing well (green) and things you’d like us to improve on (red): Good customer service
In October we took part in National Customer Service Week and asked for your feedback on our services via Facebook, Twitter, Looking Local, our Hubs, and over the phone. One of the questions was:“How likely are you to recommend New Charter to others?”
We're looking at what you've said we need to do and we'll keep you updated on our progress.
Listening to customers
61% of you said you would recommend New Charter Homes to others. This is good, but we know we can do better.
Give good advice Quicker repairs Not returning calls
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Resident stars shine bright New Charter staff put on a Grease themed show for our annual residents’ awards evening. The event was held at the New Charter Academy and nearly 200 residents celebrated the Stars that Shine, In Bloom and personal achievement awards. The first set of awards went to individuals that had taken a stand against antisocial behaviour, followed by the personal achievement awards.
Residents fr om the Fren ch Exchang e programm e
Neighbourhood awards Leading Males: Stephen Wardle, Arthur Rowbottom and David Pinnock Leading Females: Vera Anderton,Von Anderton,Von McConnell and Michelle Phillips Lead Couples: Taff & Belinda Jeffery, Don & Margaret Dargavel and Diane & Daniel Murphy Leading Group: MERA (Micklehurst Estate Residents Association),ACA Association), ACA Emma h it w m a te s n Furnishing 2nd Generatio f communities (right) or o Wilson, Direct
(Audenshaw Community Association) and Hazelhurst/Gorsey Garden group. Group awards TMT 2nd Generation Furnishings Residents from the French Exchange You can see a list of the In Bloom winners on page 11. The residents were also treated to songs from the Academy students. The event was a great success and we had lots of lovely comments from residents, many saying it was “the best awards ceremony they’d ever been to!”
New Charter staff perform ‘Grease’ 17
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Update from your Tenant Management Team (TMT) Resident Involvement Annual Review Tenants came along to a talk from TMT to hear what they’d been up to over the last 12 months and residents gave their ideas for new projects for the team. TMT has been asked to look at a range of topics including caretaking, repairs on void properties, service charges, training for Connect and cleaning out of gutters. If you have any thoughts for other services the team could look at, please post your ideas in the suggestion boxes in the Hubs.
Tenants’ Panel and TMT join forces Two of our key volunteer groups got together in November to look at areas that could improve the lives for all New Charter tenants.This was the first time these teams have joined together, so watch this space to hear about great work from them.
Working together New Charter Homes Board members and TMT also joined forces to look at ways they could work together over the next year. Both groups are working to improve our services for residents, so they will have more meetings together to ensure that they deliver your priorities.
Welcoming new Stockport residents In October, New Charter took over a sheltered housing scheme in Hazel Grove, Stockport from previous landlord Anchor Welcoming reside nts to New Housing Charter with tea and cakes Trust. The 31 homes are the first properties New Charter has owned in the Stockport area.We’ve started a programme of improvements to refurbish the homes with new windows and heating. 18
Young and old perform at prestigious Manchester concert hall Some of our older residents teamed up with students from New Charter Academy to make a piece of music for a special show at The Bridgewater Hall in Manchester. Themed around love, loss, memories and hopes, the group sang and played musical instruments which reflected their own past experiences.
Students, residents and staff at the Bridgewater Hall for the concert
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Years gone by
You aske d feature o us for a history, h n local ope enjoy it! you
We recently opened Beatrix House - a new 32-bed development in Dukinfield for older residents and those with dementia. It was named after children's author, Beatrix Potter, who had connections to the area. Beatrix Potter wrote books such as Peter Rabbit and Jemima Puddle Duck.The Friends of Gorse Hall kindly share their research with us… Beatrix Potter’s grandparents were Jane & John Leech and John owned his own large cotton mill in Stalybridge.Their daughter Helen (Beatrix’s mother) was born at Gorse Hall. Helen married Rupert Potter from Glossop and they moved to London where they had Beatrix. Rupert was a barrister and they were very wealthy.They were self-made people although they had working class roots. Beatrix wrote a diary in her younger years. It was written in code and not discovered until after her death by relatives. In her diary she recalls coming back to Gorse Hall, visiting her grandmother and trying on her grandmother’s clothes in the cellar. Although she had a very privileged life in London, she said she always felt her roots were in the north. www.tamesidehistoryforum.org.uk
ne by all in years go H e rs o G f o s d Archives Photo Local Studies an e id es m Ta of sy Photos courte
A Peter Rabbit bird ba th in the gardens at
infield Beatrix House, Duk
Do you have a connection to the Potter family or an interesting local history story in your family? We’d love you to share it with us and your story could be printed in the next newsletter! Contact the editor on 0161 331 2470 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you're interested in local history, why not visit the library's archive page online: www.tameside.gov.uk/archives/imagearchive
8976A New Charter Newsletter Winter 2012_v5__ 21/12/2012 17:19 Page 20
Keeping safe and warm in winter With the cold weather and snow, winter can be a worrying time for those of us in later life. By following some simple suggestions, we can stay safe, healthy and as comfortable as possible. Here’s a list of things you can do to help ward off the winter chills: • Make sure you know where your stopcock is and that it can be turned off in an emergency. • Make sure your smoke alarm is working. If it's not and it was provided by us, call us on 0161 331 2000. • Make sure you claim all the financial support you’re entitled to. It can help with heating bills. Call us on 0161 331 2456 for advice.
• Be sure you have some warm shoes or boots with non-slip soles. • Keep a mixture of salt and sand handy to put on steps or paths in icy weather. • Keep simple cold, flu and sore throat remedies in the house. Your pharmacist can advise you on minor illnesses and most doctors can do home visits if you’re house bound.You can also call NHS Direct on 0845 4647, 24 hours a day. • Have a flu jab if you’ve not already had one. • Order repeat prescriptions in plenty of time, particularly if bad weather is due. • Keep basic food items in the cupboard or freezer in case it’s too cold to go shopping. Or ask a neighbour to do some shopping for you.
Stay moving Keeping active helps to keep you warm. When you’re indoors, try not to sit still for more than an hour. Get up and walk around, make yourself a warm drink, and spread chores throughout the day. Chair-based exercises and simply moving your arms, legs and toes can help if walking is difficult.
Eat well Eat at least one hot meal a day and have hot drinks regularly. Have a healthy diet and aim for five portions of fruit and vegetables each day so you’re getting plenty of nutrients and vitamins. (Frozen vegetables are as good as fresh). Have a hot drink before bed and you can even keep a hot drink in a flask by your bed.
Keep warm indoors and out • Several thin layers of clothing will keep you warmer than one thick layer, as the layers trap warm air. Clothes made from wool, cotton and fleecy synthetic fibres are a good choice. Wear thermal underwear, warm tights or socks, and always wear gloves and a hat when you go out. • If you are sitting down, a shawl or blanket will keep you warm. Keep your feet up, as the air is cooler at ground level. • Check local news and weather forecasts for information and advice.
8976A New Charter Newsletter Winter 2012_v5__ 21/12/2012 17:19 Page 21
How we’re doing Performance
Our trafﬁc light system tells you how we’re doing:
On target, going well
Our performance matters at New Charter. We are proud of the service we offer you, our customers and we regularly check that we’re on target.
OK, work in progress
We set goals for each area of the company and here we tell you how we’re doing in the areas which matter most to you. Performance areas
Below target, looking to improve Percentage of tenants satisﬁed with the service
Repairs completed within set timescales
Improvements to your homes
Handling of antisocial behaviour cases
Outcome of antisocial behaviour cases
Telephone calls answered the first time you call
Are we on target?
Figures are measured quarterly and are correct at October 2012. We’re still going to report on Green Charter’s service but as it’s the winter period we haven’t got any grass cutting ﬁgures this time. We’ll update you again in the next issue, but you can read about what the team has been up to on page 9.
8976A New Charter Newsletter Winter 2012_v5__ 21/12/2012 17:20 Page 22
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Puzzle Corner Many of you have told us you'd like to see a puzzle in your magazine, so we hope you enjoy this one!
Why not tell us what type of puzzles you'd like to see? We'll look at including your favourites in future magazines. 22
8976A New Charter Newsletter Winter 2012_v5__ 21/12/2012 17:20 Page 23
Events and classes
Why not tear this out and stick it on your fridge?
Free for all New Charter tenants January 2013 Mystery Shopping Venue: Cavendish 249 - New Charter's head office
Do you like investigating things like Poirot or Columbo? Learn how to become a mystery shopper and help us to check our services are at the right standard for tenants.
Friday 1st February 9.30am-3pm
Food Hygiene Training Venue: Cavendish 249, (Board Room)
Learn the basics in food hygiene and food preparation.You'll get a recognised certificate which can be useful to help you get a job in catering.
Friday 1st, 8th, 15th & 22nd February 1pm-3pm
Basic IT Classes Venue: Cavendish 249, (Think Tank)
Can’t use a computer and want to learn? This four week programme will help you get started.
Friday 8th February 9.30am-3pm
Basic First Aid Venue: Cavendish 249, (Silver Birch meeting room)
Learn basic first aid to help you in a crisis at home, work or in your community.
Thursday 14th March 11.30am-1.30pm
Sheltered Forum Meeting Ashton House, Hyde
Residents from sheltered accommodation meet to have a brew and chat about any issues. Lunch is provided.
Wednesday 13th March 6.30pm
Residents’ Association Quiz Cavendish 249
Wednesday 16th January 2pm-4pm
Come along to our quiz with your local residents' group and go for the trophy! One of our residents is the Quiz master.
Wednesday 27th March Leaseholders Forum Cavendish 249 6pm
Calling all leaseholders. Come along to our meeting to give us your views on issues that affect you.
If you need transport for any of the events, we can arrange this for you. Contact the resident involvement team for more information or to book your place on 0161 331 2400. 23
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Our Hubs • • • •
2 Henrietta Street, Ashton 9 Albert Street, Denton 12 Clarendon Street, Hyde 63 Grosvenor Street, Stalybridge
Our Hubs open at 9am Monday to Friday (except Tuesdays, when they open at 10.30am). Please note, Denton and Stalybridge Hubs close daily between 12.30-1.30pm. All Hubs close at 5pm Monday to Wednesday; 4.30pm on Thursday; and 4pm on Friday.
0161 331 2000 The Emergency housing & repairs number (0800 027 0828) and the Antisocial behaviour helpline (0800 027 0522) will stop operating on 31st March 2013. From this time, you will reach these services by calling the main number - 0161 331 2000.
Remember, we’re moving to a single number in April 0161 331 2000. Update your phone book now.
Email: email@example.com www.newcharter.co.uk facebook.com/newcharterhomes @NewCharterGroup English
If you need help understanding this document, please call us on 0161 331 2261 and we will arrange for somebody to help you. Polish
Jeśli potrzebuje Pan/Pani pomocy w zrozumieniu tego dokumentu, prosimy o kontakt pod numerem 0161 331 2261, a my zorganizujemy kogoś do pomocy. Portuguese
Se necessitar de ajuda no que respeia à compreensão deste documento, queira por favor contactar-nos no nº. 0161 331 2261 e iremos colocar alguém à sua disposição para o ajudar French
Si vous avez besoin d’aide pour comprendre ce document, s’il vous plaît appelez-nous au 0161 331 2261 et nous nous chargerons de quelqu'un pour vous aider Resource Housing Reg. No. 2111
Head Office: New Charter Housing Trust Group, Cavendish 249, Cavendish Street, Ashton-under-Lyne, OL6 7AT