South Kesteven District Council's housing out of special measures
A council which breached safety regulations is now compliant - but there are still improvements to be made.
South Kesteven District Council has been given the all-clear by the government’s Regulator for Social Housing, which previously put it in special measures.
The council reported itself to the regulator for Social Housing three years ago after an independent review uncovered breaches, and a regulatory notice was issued in February 2021.
It was found that fire risk assessments were three years out of date, fire alarm testing hadn’t been carried out in sheltered accommodation or buildings with communal areas, and fire extinguishers and emergency lighting had not been checked recently enough.
There were also issues with record keeping and tracking of water inspections and the management of the recording of asbestos.
Wanting to improve, the council implemented an action plan to tackle areas of concern, which related mainly to inspection processes and awareness of the overall condition of its housing stock.
It also ‘strengthened its senior housing team and reformed the process for compliancy’, to ensure important safety checks are carried out.
Chief executive of South Kesteven District Council, Karen Bradford, welcomed the news that the regulatory notice against the council has been lifted.
Ms Bradford said: “The wellbeing and safety of our tenants is one of our fundamental priorities and it is welcome news that the Regulator for Social Housing has confirmed we now meet the needs of those who rely on our help and support.
“However, our work on delivering improvements to our housing service must continue and we thank our tenants for their patience and co-operation.”
She added: “We have come a long way but, while the decision to remove the regulatory notice issued in February 2021 shows we are in a stronger position, I am under no illusions that there are still improvements to be made.
“We are determined to maintain this upward trajectory in order to meet our ambition to provide safe, secure, and affordable homes to the people who really need them.”