Spotlight on: new shared ownership homes in Middleton

RBH is committed to developing new homes across the Borough of Rochdale, and improving the quality and mix of homes in neighbourhoods. Our new homes are widely recognised for their high quality; last year our new Extra Care scheme, Hare Hill in Littleborough, was the overall winner in the Rochdale Borough Design Awards, and our new homes in Heywood and Kirkholt have been shortlisted for this year’s Design Awards prize. We also have great feedback from the tenants of our new homes.

As part of this commitment, last week we received planning permission for new affordable homes in Middleton, in the shape of 25 new homes for shared ownership in Hollin. The plans will deliver much-needed new affordable homes in Middleton, with the development of 21 new three-bedroom and four two-bedroom family homes on vacant land between Hazelhurst Drive and Tintern Road. The homes are funded by RBH with the support of a grant from Homes England.

The new scheme will also include a brand new linear park, delivering improved public open space for new and existing residents, together with a safer and more secure pedestrian route through the site.

We are delighted to receive permission for these new homes, which will be our first shared ownership homes as a mutual housing society. These homes will allow local families and first-time buyers to take their first steps into home ownership. We have received a lot of interest from local residents in Middleton who are interested in hearing more about shared ownership and purchasing one of the new homes.

Having a better mix and different types of homes for rent and sale is a key part of our vision for Central Rochdale. We hope that shared ownership will form part of that vision and provide residents of the town centre the opportunity to access affordable homeownership.

College Bank caretaking update

The RBH Caretaking Team on College Bank are currently piloting a new way of delivering their service. RBH has not reduced the number of caretakers at College Bank, we’ve just asked them to work in a different way. We now have three caretaking teams working on College Bank.

These are:

  1. Our Basement, Foyer and Inspection Team, whose main role is to carry out fire inspections of every block every day, reporting repairs and reporting any caretaking jobs. This team is also responsible for carrying out any duties relating to the basement, foyer and outside areas.
  2. Our Clean Team, who will cover 26 landings and back stairs each day. This will ensure all landings and stairwells are cleaned on College Bank over a five working day period. Their work may also include responding to issues identified by the Basement, Foyer and Inspection Team.
  3. Our Hit Team, who will undertake bulk removals, jobs identified by the Basement, Foyer and Inspection Team and respond to any ad-hoc or emergency jobs.

We believe that the new system will deliver a better service and a brighter, cleaner College Bank. This is a pilot scheme and we know that we may need to make a few tweaks, the same as with any new way of doing things.

If you’d like to bring an issue to the attention of the Caretakers, you can call Freephone 0800 027 7769 (option 1) or e-mail RBH.Repairs@rbh.org.uk.

More information about our caretaking service is available on the RBH website.

Festive events at College Bank and Lower Falinge

Why not pop down to one of the festive community events at College Bank or Lower Falinge?

On Wednesday 20th December, we’re hosting a special Christmas information drop-in at College Bank, in partnership with our member charity Rochdale & District Mind.

We’ll be at the community room in Mitchell Hey from 1pm until 3.30pm – why not pop in for a cuppa and a mince pie? Rochdale & District Mind will be there to share information about what services and support are on offer over Christmas – if you need help.

On Thursday 21st December, there’s festive fun at Lower Falinge Community Base from 3pm until 5pm, organised by Rochdale & District Mind, and Lower Falinge Activity Group!

Come along for Santa’s Grotto, Christmas crafts, wellbeing information, face painting, and a brew and a mince pie! We’d love to see you there.

Rochdale Town Centre named Heritage Action Zone

We were really pleased to learn that Historic England have named Rochdale town centre as one of just eight new “Heritage Action Zones” across the country.

Specialists from Historic England will work with Rochdale Council and partners to help form an action plan, with the potential for up to £500,000 in funding to help improve some of Rochdale town centre’s most important historic sites.

This is great news for Rochdale town centre, and at RBH we are proud to have been part of the Council’s successful bid, with our wider proposals for improving the quality and mix of homes in Rochdale Town Centre a key part of the bid.  The bid was led by the council together with colleagues at the Co-operative College, the Co-operative Heritage Trust, Rochdale Development Agency and Link4Life as well as RBH.

If the action plan is approved, the Heritage Action Zone will begin in May 2018 and run for five years, to help regenerate the area.

We’ve added Browsealoud to our website!

Need help reading our website?  

We have added the world-leading digital inclusion software, Browsealoud, to our College Bank and Lower Falinge website – making our content more accessible with reading and translation support.

Click on the Browsealoud launchpad that appears on your screen (it’s an orange button!) to launch the support toolbar.  Then simply click on any text to hear it read out loud!

How does Browsealoud help?

Browsealoud offers a host of reading and translation support – helping you to access and understand our website better.

  • text-to-speech: click on or select any text to hear it read aloud
  • translation: written and spoken translations in multiple languages
  • text magnification: enlarges text and reads it out loud
  • mp3 generation: converts selected text into an MP3 audio file
  • screen mask: blocks distractions on screen with a tinted mask
  • web page simplifer: removes clutter from the screen, displaying only the main text
  • settings: customise options to suit individual needs or preferences

All the features are accessed from an easy-to-use, floating toolbar – allowing you to drag and drop it anywhere on screen.