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Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment

Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment 2009-2010


Introduction Welcome to Tamworth Borough Council’s first Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment. This report shows the real impact of tenant involvement over the past year (April 2009– March 2010). We hope you enjoy reading it. By getting involved, Tamworth Borough Council tenants and leaseholders can make a real difference. They can:

G Change the way Tamworth Borough Council works and improve the services they receive

G Gain new skills and increase tenants confidence by working with a group of other residents G Improve the area and community tenants live in

G Hold Tamworth Borough Council to account

Tenant Participation Tamworth Borough Council is committed to involving its tenants in the way it delivers its services. Customers can have a real influence on the way services are shaped and improved by choosing a way to get involved that suits them. A new Tenant Participation Strategy and Action Plan was launched in July 2009, which offers a wide range of opportunities for involvement. Tamworth Borough Council has a designated Tenant Participation Team which, for the period of this assessment, consisted of two full time and one part-time member of staff

Impact Assessment An Impact Assessment measures and evaluates the effect tenant involvement has and the difference it makes to services provided by the Council. This report identifies what has changed as a result of customers getting involved.

Who is the Impact Statement for? For Tenants – it tells you what has changed because you have got involved. For Tamworth Borough Council – it helps us evaluate areas that have benefited from tenant involvement.

For Partners and Stakeholders – it illustrates the benefits of partnership working and continuous improvement. We would like to extend an invitation to all tenants and leaseholders to get involved with the wide range of tenant involvement activities available to you. For more ways to get involved, contact details can be found on the back of this document.

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Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment


Level of Impact Each method of involvement has been rated in terms of impact made as a result of the activities. The key below explains the impact ratings

Significant impact – a direct change has been made to how services are planned or delivered as a result of the involvement method Moderate impact – some influence or minor changes to services have been made as a result of the method of involvement Low impact – no change to service has been made as a direct result of the type of involvement but outcomes do contribute towards ongoing reviews and services

Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment

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Tenant Consultative Group What is it /Purpose? The Tenant Consultative Group provides a united voice for tenants across the borough. It actively recruits, promotes consults and involves Tamworth Borough Council tenants and leaseholders in Tenant Participation activities. Tenant Consultative Group members may also chair sub groups and working groups. The group meets monthly and is consulted on tenant related policies, practices and procedures and current issues effecting Tamworth and its tenants.

Activity/Outputs

G Held 12 meetings throughout the year with an average attendance of 10 members representing 9 areas G Tenants attended ‘Local Conversation’ events as outlined by The Tenant Services Authority

G Information sessions were held on the review of the Homelink service and consultation results

G Consulted on the de-commissioning of Wincrest House sheltered housing scheme G Review of the Landlord services improvement plan

G Consulted on the draft policy surrounding Allocations and Choice Based Lettings

G Full review and consultation exercise to implement the Tenant Participation Strategy and accompanying Action Plan

G Review of all housing service standards

G Involved in producing the year end annual report

G Updated on the 10 year housing revenue business plan

G Information sessions on Thomas Hardy Court and the provision of extra care

G Assisted in a week long recruitment drive for tenant involvement working alongside staff and other tenants

G Consulted on the Christmas rent campaign

G Updated on Rent reductions

G Consulted about the Capital Works programme for the financial year 2010/2011

G Attended a Repairs Performance Chamber to look at performance of the response repairs with Morrison’s facilities

Outcomes

G Service Standards were reviewed in 2009 with tenants and published with live monitoring via the customer performance dashboard G 59 new recruits through the tenant involvement recruitment drive in October 2009. This event also engaged with tenants that ordinarily wouldn’t get involved

G Recommendations put forward from the TCG on how to make savings on the capital works programme. Tenants recommended to review decoration works as part of the Capital Works Programme as many tenants prefer to do this themselves. However consideration should be given to a small minority of cases where this isn’t possible.

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Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment


G A new Tenant Participation Strategy with a wide range of ways of opportunities for tenants to get involved was launched in July 2009

G A range of customer leaflets was produced which increased information available to tenants and leaseholders on tenant involvement

G A number of tenant related policies was revised/approved by the TCG

G Choice Based Lettings ‘Finding a Home’ questionnaire was changed following the groups feedback from continuous consultation.

G Tenants were involved in the implementation of ‘Open Allocations’ for hard to let properties. Shown a series of options for design and tested the service (customer access) – web base

G Tenants feedback was used in the process of market testing the current Homelink service

G ‘Open House’, quarterly newsletter, is now more performance related, ‘You said we Did’ following suggestions from TCG members that newsletters need to be more informative G A performance / star chamber is to be created consisting of tenants and senior managers to discuss performance figures with each housing team.

G Letters across all housing service areas were given to TCG members to review and feedback recommendations. This contributed towards recognition of the ‘Crystal Mark’ accreditation of housing letters. G TCG members choose the winning design for the rent campaign poster from a local school.

What next?

G Increase tenant representatives to join the TCG

G TCG to have increased responsibility for decision making relating to all areas of housing services

Level of Impact

Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment

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Tenant Involvement Group What is it / Purpose? The group was formed in February / March 2008 to develop the Tenant Participation Strategy for the following 3 years, 2009 – 2012. This group ensures the implementation of actions and performance targets set out in the Tenant Participation Strategy.

Activity/Outputs

G Held 8 meetings throughout the year

G Draft copies of the Tenant Participation Strategy were sent out to 70 tenants for consultation. The group reviewed all responses to discuss changes to the strategy and how it could be promoted further. G Full involvement in producing the strategy and summary document.

G Assisted in the production of a wide range of tenant involvement information leaflets and the Housing Sounding Board registration form. This registration form is completed by any tenant or leaseholder in the borough of Tamworth who have expressed an interest in getting involved in how their home and local environment are managed. G Involved in a week long tenant recruitment drive in October 2009. G Actively involved in promoting the 'Wish Upon a Star' events.

G Consulted on the gardening event suggested by the Seniors United group and how to promote the event. G Consulted and assisted in the design and implementation of the housing advice questionnaire.

G Involved in promoting the housing advice questionnaire and its completion through a variety of ways.

G Involved in producing the first Impact Assessment for Tenant Involvement. The group looked at a variety of different impact assessments to include design, layout, content and overall evaluation.

G Involved in a review of the performance indicators for Tenant Involvement for 2010-2011 and what should appear as live monitoring via the customer dashboard

Outcomes

G Tenant Participation Strategy and summary document produced

G Range of Tenant Involvement information leaflets produced in plain English with the use of local images of Tamworth as suggested by the group. G Housing Sounding Board registration leaflet produced to encourage tenant and leaseholder involvement that would be added to the database of tenant involvement

G Received a cheque donation for £5,000 from Morrisons Facilities Services for the ‘Wish Upon a Star’ community events for 2010 – 2011.

G A total of 224 customer satisfaction surveys was completed for the housing advice team which was carried out by tenants and staff working together

G 59 new tenants onto the tenant involvement database to have their say in housing services as a direct result of the recruitment drive

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What next?

G Continue to monitor the Tenant Participation Action Plan and customer feedback to improve overall satisfaction with the housing service

G To review tenant involvement activities to encourage traditionally ‘hard to reach’ groups to participate

G Review the Tenant Participation Strategy to make more user friendly

G Analyse results from the Status survey in 2010

Level of Impact

Tenant Involvement Group

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Staffordshire Tenants Forum What is it / Purpose? The Staffordshire Tenants Forum was set up in 2002 to share ideas and good practice across Staffordshire and the Midlands in relation to tenant participation. The three organisations, Tamworth Borough Council, Trent and Dove (Burton upon Trent), Homezone Living (Lichfield) contribute an annual fee of £500 towards the group’s funds. The group have undertaken training on how to mystery shop organisations on customer service. All three organisations were ‘mystery shopped’ in 2004 & 2006. They also carried out mystery shopping exercises and reported findings to Derwent Living and Three Valleys Housing in 2006. Plans are under way to mystery shop Tamworth Borough Council and Trent and Dove in 2010.

Activity/Outputs

G Working towards making an anti-social behaviour DVD

G Discussions held on setting up a website to promote the work and activities of the Staffs Tenants Forum

G Reviewing policies surrounding the TSA trailblazer events and the new regulatory standards. TSA representative attended a meeting to give an overview of the standards in relation to tenants and leaseholders

G Training by Skills Base on Disability Awareness with a view to looking at disabled access in each organisation G Sharing best practice, common themes and news across tenant involvement

G Mystery Shopping project planning

G Presentation by Trent and Dove on the structure of tenant involvement within the organisation

Outcomes

G The anti-social behaviour DVD was unsuccessful and never completed

G A website was set up to promote the groups activities

G The Disability Awareness training was disappointing and a full refund was given after a complaint was made to the training provider

G Promotes partnership working with other housing providers

What next?

G Continue to share tenant involvement best practice across the three organisations

G A Mystery shop exercise on access and customer care will be carried out in 2010 and recommendations from the exercise will be monitored accordingly

G Further work to be carried out on the Staffs Tenants Forum web page

Level of Impact

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Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment


Seniors United What is it / Purpose? The group was formed after the ‘Afternoon Tea Assembly’ event was held to bring together tenants in sheltered housing schemes across Tamworth borough and to promote the forthcoming ‘Wish Upon a Star’ initiative. The idea was put forward by several tenants and supported by their scheme managers who wanted to engage their tenants in sharing ideas and experiences across all sheltered housing schemes across the borough.

Activity/Outputs

G Held 9 meetings throughout the year with an average attendance of 10 members representing all areas of sheltered housing. G As part of the ‘Wish Upon a Star’ initiative a ‘Sheltered Housing Fun Day’ took place in April 2009 for all tenants of sheltered housing schemes.

G Discussions held on the forthcoming changes to Thomas Hardy Court and the proposed respite wing The group was consulted on changes to Sheltered Housing and Homelink services.

G Consulted on the decommissioning of Wincrest House sheltered scheme. G Involved in the planning of the Sheltered Housing Fun Day.

G Presentation by an Environmental Health Officer on how to avoid food poisoning and good hygiene practices. G Presentation by the Financial Inclusion Officer on fuel poverty, debt and housing benefit entitlements

G Presentation by the Benefits Team Leader on housing benefits, Council Tax and pensions.

G Discussions surrounding ‘Fire Safety in the home’ by local fire fighters.

G Consulted on the ‘Older Person’s Strategy’ and completed a questionnaire by the Housing Strategy Officer.

G Consulted on disabled access and general improvements to Tamworth Castle and feedback was requested in the form of a survey as part of the allocated Heritage Lottery Funding.

G Consulted and advised on the new ‘Choice Based Lettings’ allocations system for housing in Tamworth

G The group discussed the proposal for a questionnaire and consultation exercise for a suggested gardening event throughout the sheltered schemes.

G Question and answer session on repairs and improvements with Morrisons Facilities Services.

Outcomes

G After the ‘Afternoon Tea Assembly’ a forum was set up called ‘Seniors United’ to get together, share ideas and experiences. This is open to any sheltered housing tenant to join.

G Attendees at the ‘Afternoon Tea Assembly’ suggested an annual housing fun day under the ‘Wish Upon a Star’ initiative. This was put to the judging panel and an event was held in April 2009. G Following the question and answer sessions with Morrisons an invitation was extended to the group to visit the depot and sit with the call centre staff to gain a greater insight into how calls are handled.

G Following feedback from the gardening event questionnaire, there will be a pilot event at one of the sheltered schemes in May 2010

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What next?

G Increased involvement of sheltered scheme tenants enabling them to have a say about their housing service

G Consideration to a sheltered scheme annual event to be carried out in 2010-2011 to bring sheltered schemes together, share ideas and experiences and promote tenant involvement

Level of Impact

Sheltered Housing Fun Day April 2009

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Training and Development Opportunities What are they /Purpose? In-house and external training opportunities available to tenants which help them to develop their skills, provide them with information and give them an opportunity to share their views and ideas with other residents

Activity/Outputs Tenants have attended the following training courses:

G 3 National Tenants Voice Conferences

G Developing and reviewing resident involvement strategies G Working with Contractors

G Tenant Involvement with day-to-day repairs G Producing Newsletters and Publicity

G Disability Awareness Training

Outcomes

G Developing & reviewing resident involvement strategies was a useful tool for the implementation of the new Tenant Participation Strategy and Action Plan for 2009-2012

G Producing newsletters and Publicity assisted the Tenants Voice in the production of ‘Open House’ quarterly tenant newsletter, reviewing service Standards and additional Housing material

G Members of group have been provided with relevant skills to help them carry out their role

G The Disability Awareness training will assist the Staffs Tenants Forum members when carrying out mystery shopping exercises

What next?

G Tenant Inspector/Mystery Shopping Training is scheduled for May 2010 to equip customers with the skills and knowledge to effectively ‘shop’ services and test service standards. G Continue to ensure that tenants are able to access appropriate training courses to provide them with the relevant skills to help them carry out their role

Level of Impact

Tenant Involvement Group

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Tenant Services Authority (TSA) – National Conversation What is it / Purpose? The Tenant Services Authority (TSA) invited Tamworth Borough Council to become a trailblazer to assist them in running a programme of events as part of its “National Conversation” during January and March 2009. The Tenant Participation team at Tamworth Borough Council invited tenants and other neighbouring landlords to its Tenant Services Authority consultation event during February 2009.

Activity/Outputs

G A ‘local conversation’ was held on 25th February 2009 where discussions took place amongst Tamworth Borough Council tenants and representatives from other social landlords about what the standards for landlords should be

G The TSA questionnaire and freepost return envelope was sent to everybody on the database of tenants who have expressed an interest in being involved in Tamworth Borough Council services

G A second TSA workshop was held on 13th August 2009 to review two of the proposed standards from the Tenant Services Authority. This was tenant led in that tenants were asked to select which two proposed service standards they would like to look at from the initial 14 standards

Outcomes

G Notes compiled from the workshop in February and all completed questionnaires was sent to the Tenant Services Authority to feed into the National Conversation.

G A feedback form about the ‘local conversation’ was completed at the end of both workshops and returned to the TSA

G Tamworth Borough Council tenants have had a continued input into the TSA’s consultation process

What next?

G Continue to update tenants and leaseholders on the TSA’s new regulatory framework that housing providers will have to meet from April 2010

Level of Impact

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Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment


Surveys What are they / Purpose? Surveys are a way of obtaining views/feedback from tenants about a specific service area, topic or on a range of issues. This is usually carried out by completing a form or answering a telephone survey with a member of Tamworth Borough Council Housing staff. This enables Tamworth Borough Council to build up a picture of tenants’ views to help monitor performance and shape service improvements.

Activity /Outputs

G Tenant satisfaction forms are completed by tenants in their homes following the completion of any repair works, gas servicing or gas installations.

G ‘Finding a Home’ questionnaire was completed with a summary paper that outlined the Council’s draft Choice Based Lettings housing policy. G A Housing Advice customer survey was carried out to assess customer awareness of information and service availability

G Sheltered Housing Scheme Gardening Event Questionnaire

Outcomes

G Tamworth Borough Council can monitor satisfaction and performance with contractors

G Feedback from ‘Finding a Home’ questionnaire was fed into the Council’s draft Choice Based Lettings Policy with the new system being introduced early in 2010

G Feedback to the sheltered Housing Gardening event questionnaire has led to a pilot event that will take place in May 2010.

G Following the feedback to responses, focus and resources can be targeted to service areas where customer satisfaction is low

What next?

G Customer satisfaction surveys will be produced for other services where none is currently sought G More online surveys will be researched and introduced

G Extend methods of obtaining customer satisfaction to include telephone surveys, focus groups, discussion group, social networking sites etc

Level of Impact

Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment

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Tenants Voice Tenants’ Voice is a group of tenants who contribute to and edit ‘Open House’ the Council’s quarterly tenant newsletter. This is delivered to every tenant and leaseholder in the borough

What is it / Purpose? The newsletter keeps customers informed about Housing Services and provides relevant and up-todate information.

Activity /Outputs

G Four editions produced annually

G Tenants events and activities publicised

G Provides advice to tenants on important issues such as raising awareness about bogus callers and tips on making savings through energy efficiency

G Informs customers about key issues including estate walkabouts, ways to pay rent, new or improved services provided by Tamworth Borough Council, opportunities for involvement and successes and achievements across the housing service. The newsletter is also used to promote the ‘You said, We did’ campaign

G Tenants Voice was involved in producing a wide range of customer leaflets on tenant involvement. This included looking at the layout, design, content and the implementation of local images

G Review of housing service standards

Outcomes

G Produced a wide range of customer leaflets to increase information available to tenants and leaseholders on how to get involved

G Attended training on Producing Newsletters and Publicity

G Review of all service standards and published via the customer performance dashboard

G Tamworth Borough Council has a list of list of tenants who are interested in getting involved in ‘Tenants Voice’

What next?

G Tenants to have increased editorial control of Open House

Level of Impact

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Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment


‘Wish Upon a Star’ What is it / Purpose? ‘Wish Upon a Star’ is an initiative aimed at encouraging and promoting local community activity for tenants of Tamworth Borough Council. The Tenant Participation Team and Morrison Facilities Services have teamed up to help make a wish for a community project come true. Tenants and Leaseholders are asked to write their ideas on a star, including where it would or could take place to improve their local communities. The ideas are then judged by a panel from across Housing services, tenants and Councillors to decide which ideas will then be put forward.

Activity /Outputs

G Arden Close community tidy up event

G Sheltered Housing fun day

Outcomes

G The Arden Close tidy up event brought together residents to tidy up the local area. The event engaged with families that traditionally don’t get involved and enabled tenants to meet with other residents, housing staff and other partner agencies to discuss any concerns or issues in their area.

G The Sheltered Housing fun day enabled tenants to meet with other sheltered schemes tenants across the borough of Tamworth. The event offered the opportunity to talk to local organisations and agencies about any issues or concerns and those that attended were able to take away lots of useful information

G Provides regular articles for the tenants newsletter ‘Open House’ to keep customers informed

G Both events provided opportunity for tenant involvement and/or increased use of community resources and helped to build up the database of ‘interested in getting involved’ customers.

G A full review of each event can be viewed on the Tamworth Borough Council Website or contacting the tenant participation team.

What next?

G Continue to encourage ideas for the ‘Wish Upon a Star’ scheme through Open House, estate walkabouts or other events held in housing services

G Complete 3 ‘Wish Upon a Star’ activities for 2010/2011

G Increased numbers of involvement to be achieved through ‘Wish Upon a Star’

Level of Impact

Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment

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Arden Close Tidy up Event July 2009

Sheltered Housing Fun Day April 2009

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Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment


Estate Walkabouts What are they / Purpose? The aim of an estate walkabout is to give tenants, Tamworth Borough Council staff and partner agencies the chance to work together to make sure estates are a better places for people to live now and in the future. They look out for such items as litter, car parking problems, communal areas etc. Residents can talk about improvements or problems with the people that can make a difference.

Activity /Outputs

G Three Estate Walkabouts per year

G Tenants invited via Open House and Tamworth Borough Council website

G Tenants on the database of tenant involvement are formerly invited to attend and give feedback on all estate walkabouts

G Each walkabout includes a briefing session, a tour of the estate, a log of all of the issues identified and an invitation to help put together an action plan to address any issues

Outcomes

G Increase opportunities for customers to meet Tamworth Borough Council staff in their local area and raise any issues with them through a face-to-face chat

G Increase opportunities for Tamworth Borough Council staff to gain informal feedback from customers

G Officers and customers will agree how to solve any problems, or how to tackle any issues and agree an action plan. It will include what action will be taken, who has responsibility for ensuring that action is taken and the timescales for action to take place. Results are reported back on a regular basis through Open House as part of the ‘You said, We did’ campaign.

G Promotion of the ‘Wish upon a Star’ initiative for those tenants that want to engage with the housing service in a less formal way

What next?

G Estate walkabouts and inspections will continue to take place and will be well advertised

G Increase the number of tenants getting involved at both the estate walkabouts and action planning meeting

G Continue to promote the ‘You said, we did’ campaign

G Encourage tenant involvement through registering on the database of tenant involvement

Level of Impact

Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment

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Amington Estate Walkabout 2009

Bolehall Estate Walkabout 2009

Leyfields Estate Walkabout 2009

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Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment


Tenant Involvement Recruitment Drive What is it / Purpose? The tenant participation team held a week long event to encourage tenant involvement with Tamworth Borough Council. This ran from 26-30th October 2009. The recruitment drive was an opportunity to promote the benefits of getting involved and the ways tenants can get involved and help shape their housing service.

Activity /Outputs

G A range of engagement activities was developed to promote tenant involvement during the weeks recruitment drive

G Presentations to tenants at sheltered housing schemes G Display in Ankerside Shopping Centre

G Promotional events around the borough

G Tenant Participation Team attended meetings with the U3A and the Women’s Institute

G Attended a Planning Roadshow to raise awareness of tenant involvement

G Tenant involvement and awareness was promoted through the Amington Estate Walkabout

G Promotional material and staff promoting tenant involvement in the main reception area of Marmion House

Outcomes

G Increased opportunity for all tenants to find out more about involvement opportunities with Tamworth Borough Council

G Increase on the tenant involvement database of 59 new customers through the completion of a Sounding Board Registration form G Targeted those tenants that ordinarily do not get involved ‘hard to reach’

G Large notice board permanently displayed in Marmion House reception to promote housing services

What next?

G Continue to raise awareness and promote the benefits of tenant involvement through a number of different ways and as widely as possible

G Target awareness at tenants that traditionally do not get involved e.g. families and young people

G Carry out a second recruitment drive in October 2010

Level of Impact

Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment

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Tenant Involvement Database What is it / Purpose? The tenant involvement database contains the details of all tenants wishing to get involved in ways and at times that suits them and in areas they are interested in.

Activity /Outputs

G Tamworth Borough Council invites tenants and leaseholders to have their say and influence their housing service by completing the Housing Sounding Board registration form

G 77 new tenants were added to the tenant involvement database during 2009/2010. 59 of these came from the recruitment drive carried out over a week during October 2009

G The tenant involvement database was reviewed in February 2010

Outcome

G By carrying out a review of the tenant involvement database we are able to determine where the gaps are and what improvements are needed to ensure that we are providing excellent opportunities for tenants to get involved and have a say in the way their housing service is delivered

What next?

G Set up a Young Tenants Panel in 2010/2011 to ensure community engagement is inclusive and promotes equal opportunities in all young tenants. Need to explore if young people are facing barriers to their participation. A ‘one size fits all’ approach to engaging people will not work

G Looking at ways to engage with other groups that are traditionally less likely to engage e.g. black and ethnic minority groups, young people, families, disabled etc.

Level of Impact

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Tenant Involvement Impact Assessment


The following diagrams have been taken from the Tenant Involvement database 2009 - 2010

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If you would like this document in a different language or format, for example audio cassette, large print or Braille, please contact the Tenant Participation team

Tenant Participation Contact Details Telephone: 01827 709448 Freephone: 0800 183 0454 Tenant Participation Team, Tamworth Borough Council Marmion House, Lichfield Street, Tamworth, Staffordshire, B79 7BZ Email: tenantparticipation@tamworth.gov.u Designed and produced by Tamworth Borough Council

(06/10) 0953


TI Impact Assessment 2009-2010