Sutton Housing Society: tackling loneliness by building communities

Sutton Housing Society is a small registered provider (RP) that is helping to tackle social isolation by providing homes for older people (over 55s), as well as the opportunity to be part of a supportive community.

Social Problem

3.6 million older people live alone in the UK, and 1.9 million often feel ignored or invisible.[1] Older people usually want to keep their independence but may need support to address challenges such as reduced mobility or poor health.

Solution

Sutton Housing Society owns and manages several independent living schemes within the London Borough of Sutton. Rentals are currently let at social rent levels. They provide a range of support to their residents, from pull-cord alarm systems to regular welfare checks, as well as organising a wide range of events and activities to help residents socialise, stay active and learn new skills.

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Sutton Housing Society’s newest housing development, Peppermint Court

Loan

Sutton Housing Society’s newest housing development, Peppermint Court, was completed in July 2018 and was built with the help of a loan from Charity Bank. Peppermint Court comprises 23 self-contained flats, a communal lounge and residents garden. As well as becoming an investment partner with the Greater London Authority, the housing association is now in the process of extending its loan facility to build 67 new homes, primarily as airspace developments on its existing schemes.

Impact

Sutton Housing Society gives people more than just a home – it ensures they have the support they need to live independently for longer, and a community to share their life with. Whether it’s through the befriending scheme, film nights, bingo, tai chi or art classes, residents are given opportunities to build friendships, have fun and live life to the full.

“As well as choosing a finance provider that would offer us a competitive rate, we felt that working with the Charity Bank brought the added benefit of dealing with people who share our values and want to make a difference. It is part of their DNA – the clue is in the name! We have built a collaborative relationship and the people at Charity Bank will always go the extra mile.”

Robin Roberts, Chief Executive of Sutton Housing Society

“My parents had been on the waiting list for a flat for over a year. Then Peppermint Court came up! My parents fell in love with it. The flat is beautiful and bright, lovely big rooms, huge windows and a great balcony. My parents attend all of your events in the communal lounge and have made friends with some of the other residents, so are now social butterflies.”

The son of two Peppermint Court residents