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Our former chair Christine Searle wins Lifetime Achievement in Housing Award


Poplar HARCA was buzzing on Monday night as we celebrated our former chair and board member Christine Searle winning the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Housing Heroes Awards ceremony in Manchester.

Our Rents team was also highly commended in the Team of the Year (1001-15,000 homes) category of the Awards, which shine a light on hard-working leaders, innovators and changemakers across the housing sector.

We couldn’t be prouder of Christine, who’s been central to shaping Poplar HARCA from the beginning, as one of our founding resident directors.

As one of the first resident chairs of a housing association board in the country, Christine was awarded an MBE for services to communities in 2004, and named one of the 25 most influential people in social housing by Inside Housing in March 2009.

Throughout her career, Christine has helped a number of landlords in their approach to resident governance and scrutiny, and has been involved in providing independent advice on a number of high profile regeneration schemes, after founding her own successful consultancy. She was our chair for six years, and a member of the board for 11 years.

Our Rents team also plays a crucial role at Poplar HARCA by helping residents to stay happy and secure in their homes.

The team provided a huge support network within our local community during the pandemic, and proactively contacted residents in low-level arrears to provide advice on how to stop their arrears from accumulating.

One resident said: “I just wanted to say thank you for all your help with the financial issue I had. It was very stressful, and I wouldn’t have been able to get through it without all of your support.”

Congratulations to both Christine and our Rents team!