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Joining forces to fight tenancy fraud

1 November, 2016

bpha has joined forces with Bedford Borough Council to launch a joint campaign to help identify tenancy fraud across the borough.

The Government has recognised that social housing tenancy fraud is a national problem, with homes being illegally sublet or people lying about their circumstance to get a tenancy.

The result is that homes are occupied by people who are not entitled to live there, thus increasing demand for organisations to provide expensive temporary accommodation for families desperately in need of affordable homes.

To help tackle the problem bpha has embarked on a joint working programme with Bedford Borough Council’s Fraud Investigation Service to investigate social housing fraud within the borough.

Since the initiative started last year, 21 properties have been repossessed due to tenancy fraud, resulting in more homes being available for those in need.

In addition, four criminal prosecutions and five cautions have been taken against those involved in tenancy fraud.

By addressing the issue, bpha and Bedford Borough Council aim to increase the number of Social Housing tenancies available across the borough and take action against those who deliberately and dishonestly abuse the system for their own gain.

Councillor Charles Royden, Deputy Mayor and Bedford Borough Council’s Portfolio Holder for Environment, said: “People who sublet social housing may be committing tenancy fraud and are denying families in need of a place to call their own.”

People can report any suspicions of tenancy fraud to bpha in confidence on 0330 100 0272 or email info@bpha.org.uk.

You can also confidentially report Tenancy Fraud to the council by emailing fraud@bedford.gov.uk or call 0800 917 8491.

bpha appoints new Non-Executive Director to its Board

26 October, 2016

bpha is pleased to announce that Jill Ainscough has been appointed as Non-Executive Director to the bpha Board and also as Chair of the Remuneration and Nominations Committee.

jill-ainscough-linkedinJill is a highly experienced non-executive director having completed six years on the board at Sport England, including a period chairing the Audit Committee.

Jill is currently also a board member at the BMJ and was previously a non-executive director at Lakehouse Plc, where she chaired the remuneration committee.

 

Formerly Managing Director of Easynet, Jill joined Ofcom as Chief Operating Officer in 2007. Jill was a member of the main board covering wide ranging regulation of the communications sector and postal services. In this role she was also instrumental in delivering spectrum management for the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Jill brings with her a wide breadth of experience as an executive working in commercial and operational roles within the private and public sectors whilst contributing a sound understanding of what it means to be a good non-executive director.

Jill said: “I am delighted to be appointed to the board of bpha and I am really looking forward to contributing to the association’s work to help more people access affordable housing. As a Bedford resident, I was particularly keen to support my local community and I’m very aware of the importance of social housing in this area. ”

Kevin Bolt, Chief Executive Officer at bpha, said: “We are pleased to welcome Jill to the board of bpha. She brings a wide range of skills and experience to our Board as well as a strong local perspective. We manage just under 18,000 homes and are one of the top 30 developing housing associations in the country.

“It is important that we have a strong and experienced Board to drive the performance of the organisation at a time when the housing sector is facing a range of economic, social and legislative challenges.”