Alliance Homes, Portishead
Alliance Homes is a community-based social enterprise providing a range of housing services in North Somerset. We do not exist to make a profit and any surplus money is spent on improving homes and services.
We were established in 2006 and our vision remains to achieve stronger communities, better homes and smarter business. Since we started we have supported a number of community-based projects and our focus is very much on providing support to the community and the people who live in our homes. We also proudly support The Information Station, incorporating North Somerset Credit Union and Westonworks a one-stop skills and advice shop on the Bournville, Weston-super-Mare, which was set up to provide information and advice on training courses, volunteering opportunities, employment and work experience.
As well as providing affordable homes we work hard every day to help some of the most vulnerable members in our community enjoy independent and fulfilled lives. Alliance Homes’ Supported Housing Services are part-funded by North Somerset Council.
We have recently launched a new chargeable support service to address a gap for those people who need help with tasks such as cooking, cleaning, shopping and even walking the dog. This service is already proving to be a success.
We are investing in making as many of our properties energy efficient and solar energy is one way we are doing this. We are now the largest provider of photovoltaic panels in the UK (also known as solar panels) and have installed panels on 1,100 of our homes which help the environment by producing renewable energy and most importantly help reduce the energy bills of our tenants.
We own around 6,500 properties and have our own workforce who repair and maintain the homes to a high standard. In all, we provide homes and housing - related support to 8,000 people and employ over 250 staff who work in partnership with local, regional and national agencies.
To further emphasise its green credentials, Alliance Homes has recently won an award for its PV panel project in the Green Business Awards. The award was in the ‘Public Sector’ category and was awarded in recognition of its support to public bodies by offering easy access to affordable PV packages. The social enterprise also received recognition for its scheme to install panels on 1,200 of its properties, as well as on the roofs of its two offices. For further details visit our news item (21 November 2012).
In December 2012, Alliance Homes completed the purchase of a range of houses and flats on the Boulevard, Amberey Road and Weston Gateway, all in Weston-super-Mare. Amberey Road is a recently completed two-bedroom bungalow built to a very high sustainable level, with energy-efficient underfloor heating and ramp access to the front door. The social enterprise has also purchased six new houses at Weston Gateway which will be ready for tenants to move into in the New Year.
In December 2013 the organisation was awarded the Investors in People Gold award for going above and beyond in the way they develop, support and motivate their team. The prestigious national award is awarded to just 3.2% of organisations in the UK. For more information, visit our news item (12 December 2013).
Alliance Homes launched a project with Western Power Distribution at the beginning of 2014 to help a housing estate in Weston-super-Mare use less and spend less on their electricity. Less is More is a pilot project that will run for the whole of 2014 and aims to help communities on the Bournville reduce their electricity consumption together. Energy usage is displayed in real time on a simple website, where residents can see how it compares against their target. The less electricity that is used means more prize money that can be won. The Bournville community is aiming to save enough electricity to win £5,000. For more details visit our news item (24 March 2014).
At the 2014 North Somerset Business Awards, Alliance Homes won awards in two categories, the Business in the Community Award and the Employer of the Year Award. They also won Insider Housing's 'Sustainable Social Housing Finance Award’ in October 2014.