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Fire Safety Matters

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To raise awareness of safety in the home, we held their first Fire Safety Awareness Week over May half term from 28th of May until the 1st of June.

During the week, there were number of exciting activities undertaken around the business and in the community: including two local fire station trips. The team spent their time encouraging customers to think about fire prevention and how to save a life, in the event of one.

Ocean Group’s Head of Health, Safety & Environment, Ralph Garth and the Tenant Involvement team worked closely with the Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service to run a variety of activities to get the message out there.

Ralph Garth said,

“Our first Fire Safety Awareness Week has proved to be a fantastic initiative across our business to raise fire safety awareness in our customers and staff. The reaction has been really positive and the fire safety message is being spread far and wide, and we are especially thankful to our partners Cornwall Fire Service and Jewson for their involvement in the week.”

We teamed up with Cornwall Fire Service to run fun events at St Austell and Newquay fire stations; giving families the opportunity to go behind the scenes and understand the incredible work the Fire Service does.

Fire-Blankets-Jewson

Jewson, one of our key supply chain partners, also kindly donated over 60 fire blankets to be distributed to our customers over the coming weeks.

As a result of the positive outcome of the week, we intend to add this campaign into our calendar as a permanent fixture every May half term. Watch this space for next year’s Fire Safety Awareness Week!

www.oceanhousing.com/fire-safety-awareness-week

Ocean-Housing-Fire-Safety-Matters-Fire-Service

Local school Play Fund receives boost from Ocean

Local pre-school Little Nippers in Mevagissey was excited to welcome Ocean Housing for a pre-Christmas boost.

Little Nippers is a registered charity supporting 2-5 year old children in early years care and education.  In order to support their ongoing costs and improvements, fundraising events are planned throughout the year as well as seeking support from local businesses.

St Austell-based housing provider Ocean has built in the region of 80 properties in Mevagissey, creating much-needed homes for local families and individuals. Continue reading

Having a Lifeline

Many people enjoy the independence of living at home and just need that little extra support.

Our Ocean Extra Lifeline services give reassurance to residents and their families that they are not alone, and someone is at the end of the phone.

The Lifeline pendant or bracelet works anywhere around your home and outside in the garden. Just press the button and you are connected to a local 24-hour call centre and it costs just £3.95 per week.

In addition, we also offer a visiting service starting at £7.80 a week including Lifeline, and you decide on a weekly, fortnightly or monthly visit.

Our trained staff can help you with housekeeping, shopping, doctors’ appointments and much more.

Continue reading

Design of the times for Ocean residents

Staff and customers from St-Austell-based housing provider Ocean Housing made the trip to Plymouth recently to help design homes of the future at the South West Residents Design Conference 2017.

The event brought together social housing customers from around the region and gave the opportunity to learn everything you never knew had to be borne in mind when starting a new development! Participants heard about the nature and wildlife considerations which housing associations work with when planning new communities and went on virtual tours of properties via Virtual Reality Headsets. Continue reading

Rising to the Challenge!

We all know that here in Cornwall our homes need regular maintenance to ward off that weathered look the traditional Cornish weather can bring!

Ocean ensures that the outside walls of all our homes are given a wash down or fresh coat of paint on a rolling basis, as part of our routine £4million annual investment in property maintenance.

In August, 83 year old Ocean tenant and Scrutiny Panel member Ron Deacle turned his attention to Ocean’s external decorations service and threw down the gauntlet to Nick Reeks (Planned Maintenance Co-ordinator) claiming “I can do it quicker” …and so the challenge was set… Continue reading

#HousingDay – Gas leak discovery

Ocean tenant and Chair of the Tenant panel, Jan Faulkner (on the right) has just emailed us because she felt you should hear her story.

“Each year, we allow Ocean into our homes to carry out a gas safety check, which is a legal and a tenancy requirement.

This year, the engineer called to my home to complete the necessary test. However, towards the end of this test he asked if I had smelt gas, and I had to say that I had.

Six months earlier I had to replace my gas cooker, and arranged for a qualified fitter to put it in. Since then, there had been a slight smell of gas but I failed to take any notice as I trusted the qualified fitter and thought it was normal for a new cooker. I had suffered headaches and nausea but I had not connected it to the smell.

I was informed that there was a leak from the pipe to the cooker and this was impacting on mine and my family’s health.

Thankfully, the Ocean engineer put it right for me there and then. I was so relieved.

My home now has a clean bill of health for another year, and no smell of gas.

We may feel that it is inconvenient and not necessary but knowing that my home is safe for another year is so worth it.”

This experience has been a real eye opener for her. It just goes to show that many of our customers could potentially be putting themselves and their families at risk because they are failing to give our engineers access to carry out their annual gas service.

#HousingDay 2017 – Going the Extra mile

On 18th September, we celebrate #HousingDay on social media to try and raise awareness of the positive impact the Housing Sector has on people’s lives, especially with the latest report that Housing Associations relieve the pressure on the NHS.

Banner Independence Extra SH

Our Ocean Extra team gave us an insight into a regular day, supporting our vulnerable customers:

“Tracy has been dealing with a vulnerable person who lives on his own and is socially isolated because of his mental health condition and appearance.  He always greets her with a smile and accepts all her help with real gratitude.  That’s because, without her intervention, he would have died of malnutrition.

Yesterday, she was visiting another client when she came across Nigel in the corridor who’s neck had spasmed, literally stopping him in his tracks. Nigel’s disabled partner was unable to help him move. Tracey helped him there and then but also went on to liaise with the NHS to ensure his Parkinson’s medication was adequate.
Ocean Extra tracey

Jan has assisted with a coffee morning activity at Prince Charles House which brings tenants and people from the community together.  During that weekend this group raised £355.17 for Little Harbour Children’s Hospice.”

jan

All in a day’s work. Thanks ladies for your insights.

Ocean Extra also deliver a Lifeline service and have asked their customers recently if they were satisfied with the service. Their feedback was heartwarming. You can click on each one to view it larger.

lifeline-feedback-1 lifeline-feedback-atnight lifeline-feedback-cantimagine lifeline-feedback-excellantservice lifeline-feedback-fairdistance lifeline-feedback-feelsafe lifeline-feedback-recommend lifeline-feedback-savedhusband lifeline-feedback-widow lifeline-feedback-wouldntbehere

 

#JoinourBoards

We’ve just launched our #JoinourBoards campaign as we have several fresh openings on our Boards & Committees, ready and waiting for new Non-Executive Director applicants.

Ocean Housing Group Ltd are looking to recruit new Board Members to join our talented team of non-executives and to help to drive our business forward.

This is an exciting time for Ocean, with a new Corporate Strategy and Business Plan.

We have ambitious plans to develop new homes and to invest in our existing homes and communities.

We are looking to recruit new Board Members to join our talented team of non-executives and to help to drive our business forward.

Why Join?

The role of a Board Member is diverse, complex, challenging and incredibly rewarding.

We work together as a strong team and support our Executive Team in the delivery of our agreed strategies and plans.

About Ocean Group

Chairman of the Ocean Group Board, Dennis Spilsbury, introduces the Group, who we are and what’s coming up for the Ocean group of companies over the next 5 years:

Our Board Members develop and shape our business strategy to:

  • Drive improvement
  • Shape customer-focused services
  • Identify and mitigate risk
  • Define strategic priorities
  • Make a difference

Vacancies

Ocean Group Board Member

Meet the Deputy Chair of the Ocean Group Board, Debbie Wilshire, who explains the role of a Board Member:

 

Ocean Housing Board Member

Chair of the Ocean Housing Board, Chris Durkin, outlines what we do, the challenges ahead and exciting plans for growth over the next 5 years:

 

Gilbert & Goode Board Member

Chair of Gilbert & Goode, Jonathan Adlington, explains how Gilbert & Goode fits within the Group as a commercial enterprise:

 

Group Audit, Risk & Assurance Committee Member

We would also welcome applications from candidates with internal or external audit experience to join our Group Audit, Risk & Assurance Committee.

Apply

For more information regarding specific responsibilities and knowledge and experience, please click HERE to visit our Board Member job listing and complete the application forms in full.

http://www.ocean-group.co.uk/join-our-boards

 

That calls for a coffee!

70 homes

4 schemes

1 School expansion

…and maybe an award

– that calls for a coffee!

Phase 4 Fraddon resident welcomes Mark Gardner (Chief Exec Ocean Group) and Kate Kennally (Chief Exec Cornwall Council) for a cuppa.

Fraddon

St Austell-based housing provider Ocean Housing welcomed delighted new residents and Cornwall Council Chief Executive Kate Kennally to their latest housing development in Fraddon.

Welcome Day for Fraddon residents, Ocean Staff, Tenant Panel members and Cornwall Council dignitories

Continue reading

Add some Colour to your CV!

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Click on the poster to open printable version

Click on the poster to open printable version

 

Ocean Housing Ltd is keen to create more video content to inform and empower our residents and stakeholders.

Here at Ocean we are more used to making homes than films – but we know what we need to say. We just want to bring our words to life!

…That’s where you come in.

If you are studying film & media and feel you are ready to gain experience, working to a business brief (creating some videos for our website and YouTube channel) APPLY NOW!

Closing date 29th September 2017

I want to make your Youtube films

 

Park House Fire Safety Awareness Event

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63 Park HouseOcean’s Head of Health, Safety and Environment, Ralph Garth, teamed up with Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service and Community Safety team to run a special fire safety session at Park House – to talk to residents, provide reassurance, advice and support.

Fire Safety Awareness Morning

20th June
9am-12pm
Park House
St. Austell

Park House is Cornwall’s only high rise residential block of flats. It is regularly inspected by our Health & Safety teams, Neighbourhood Services Officer and Maintenance Manager.

Over the last few years we have worked closely with the Fire Brigade to ensure all systems are up to date. Last October, Ocean teamed up with the St Austell fire crew to organise an exercise so they could practice possible fire and rescue situations in and around the building.

Justin Sharp from Cornwall Fire Service was interviewed on BBC Radio Cornwall about fire safety at Park House:

‘I’m comfortable we’ve worked with Ocean Housing to ensure there is a very high standard of fire safety on the premises.’

‘I’d like to reassure residents in Park House that their safety is paramount.’

‘We’ve worked with Ocean and are satisfied that fire safety measures meet today’s standards.’

The event itself was well attended and teams worked through the building visiting the majority of residents individually. Ralph said

‘we had the opportunity to speak to most of the residents about all the fire precautions and measures in place that meet current regulations,  as well as escape plans and fire safety guidance and advice.’

Residents reacted positively and were reassured in particular by the ‘passive protection’ measures that are in place.

Any concerns or queries can be raised with either Ocean or the Fire Service, and Park House residents are more than welcome to request a home visit if they were unable to meet the team at today’s event.

Please feel free to fill out the online contact form below and we’ll get back in touch as soon as we can.

Please enter your details

 

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Bright future for St. Blazey

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Local residents are celebrating with Ocean this week, following the announcement that funding has been awarded to look into regeneration and re-development in the heart of the community.

Future options for the 8 blocks of three storey flats at Polgrean Place and the surrounding landscape will be explored, and people living in the area can expect to be asked for their views and be kept in close contact with updates on what will be a two year research project.*

Ocean’s Chief Executive, Mark Gardner, explained further:

“Ocean’s top priority is quality homes and living space for its residents and that is why we worked hard to secure this government funding, to help accelerate future plans for the Polgrean and St Blazey area.

Researching regeneration options will build upon the multi-million pound Promises Programme which Ocean has undertaken over the past 16 years, which has seen glazing, roofing and insulation programmes improve the standard of thousands of Cornish homes.”

The Managing Director of Ocean Housing, Frances Turner, added:

“Our teams have been working closely on the local Neighbourhood Plan, to retain this area as a central hub to over 6,500 people living in the Par and St Blazey area. Ocean has a strong track record of working with local partners to deliver community improvements and we look forward to once again collaborating with organisations such as Cornwall Council, so that these exploratory works can tie in with other key plans for the area, such as the STARR flood alleviation project.”

Ocean is keen to hear ideas and input on future plans for the area and will shortly begin a full programme of consultation.

Keep up to date by visiting our Polgrean News pages and contribute your thoughts by various means:

Icon online form sml Polgrean News

Icon Email sml Email help@oceanhousing.com

icon-lets-chat-sml LiveChat here on the website

Icon online form sml Online Contact Form

 

NB: * Properties designated as Polgrean Place are No’s 1 – 47 Polgrean Place – odds only, 2 – 72 Polgrean Place – evens only.

‘Had their Say’!

Homepage-Carousel-Have-your-say

Ocean recently invited our customers to attend a couple of ‘Have your Say’ workshops – to review our ‘Service Standards’.

Getting customers involved with reviewing the way we do things and providing feedback is really important. After all, you know best what is important to you!

The team were really pleased with the sessions and felt they had been constructive and positive experiences for all.

Service Standards

These are 7 documents that set out the quality of service you can expect, the improvements we are planning and how you can judge our performance.

Each quarter, we publish a performance report for residents which is reviewed by the Tenants and Residents Panel. The report details how we are doing across each of the seven standards.

You can view the standards and the report on our website any time!

Icon online form sml Service Standards

 

The Workshops

We held two workshops, presenting our existing set of standards and outlining planned improvements, including changes to wording as well as the design and style of the documents. Everyone was given the opportunity to discuss, question and challenge the standards.

Laura Dowton, the Tenant Involvement and Social Inclusion Manager said,

“The turnout was great – there were some new faces as well as some of our dedicated panel members. 

The enthusiasm level was high – everyone was really interested and I have arranged to follow up with a couple of attendees as they asked about getting more involved.

The people I spoke to gave positive feedback and seemed relaxed and comfortable. Many said they would be happy to come along to future events.”

Where there were alterations required, the managers now have the task of making appropriate changes before we publish the final versions.

We will publish final versions on the Service Standards pages.

To view the final versions, watch this space! 

#HousingDay 2016 ‘Fresh Start’

Today, we’ve been celebrating #HousingDay on social media to try and raise awareness of the positive impact the Housing Sector has on people’s lives.

One of our Customer Accounts Advisors has put into words how she feels about her work:

melody-boyce“People often think of social housing as cheap housing for people who can’t afford the private sector.

What is missing from that is the tremendous amount of support that we offer to people to make their tenancy a success.

One of the aspects I find most satisfying is helping people through their first tenancy or with a fresh start. They may be walking away from abuse or just starting up and it can be terrifying. You don’t get that support in the private sector and seeing tenants grow and become happy in their new home is fantastic.

I am very lucky to meet people before they become Ocean tenants and work with them throughout the first few months of their tenancy helping with things like Housing Benefit, Universal Credit, benefits generally and budgeting.

Giving people the tools to turn their lives around and become independent is immensely satisfying and its lovely to speak to people a few weeks into their tenancy and hear that just having a new home has made all the difference.”

Thank you, Melody!

Get Involved – Crafty Fingers

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Residents at Prince Charles House, along with others who make up the group Active+, have been given the opportunity to get involved with something new.

Mosaic making sessions, hosted by Ocean and Cornwall College, took place over the course of three weeks and gave the group insight into designing and creating their very own bright and colourful mosaics.

“Although at first it seemed fiddly it didn’t take long to get the hang of it!” explains Christine. “The group really engaged with the activity and are looking forward to trying a different activity offered by the college and Ocean”.

Being part of a community group, tenant panel or local activity can be really rewarding – especially if you find your circumstances leaving you feeling isolated and out of touch or you can’t afford some of the expensive hobbies on offer. Continue reading

Residents at our Heart

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Steve-Williams-2016Our Tenancy Sustainment Service has been up and running for 2 years, overseeing Ocean’s work safeguarding our residents and high-level antisocial behaviour.
Providing a person-centred approach to dealing with various issues concerned with domestic abuse and vulnerable cases, Stephen Williams, our Tenancy Sustainment Co-ordinator, is committed to providing the best possible service for our residents who need us most.

“Working with other agencies including the Police, Probation Service, and Social Services we aim to support our tenants to the best of our ability, prioritising their safety is our main purpose,” explains Stephen.

“We seek, as far as we can, to address the needs of vulnerable people while at the same time using appropriate tenancy enforcement action where, unfortunately, we need to,” continues Stephen.

If you have any concerns regarding a vulnerable resident or see anything that sets off alarm bells in your mind, visit the ‘Keeping Safe’ section of our website for advice (click on ‘Safe’ below) or contact Stephen Williams directly.

Icon Email sml help@oceanhousing.com

Icon phone sml 01726 874450

 

‘Art House’ celebrates our 1,000th Home!

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Ocean were looking for a unique way to mark the big occasion – to celebrate the completion of their 1,000th new home in Cornwall for local families – so we invited the school children of Connor Downs Academy to rise to the challenge.

The unique idea chosen was to turn the 1,000th home into a house decorated with pictures of local scenes or people painted by Connor Downs’ children along with prints of some of the world’s best known pictures, including The Mona Lisa.

Dennis-&-plaque

As part of the official opening, by Ocean’s Group Chairman, Dennis Spilsbury, guests entered the 1,000th home and were greeted by a wonderful sea of art from the local children within the one off ‘Art House’. Continue reading

Housing Heroes Award – Finalists!

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Congratulations to our Development team who, in recognition of all their hard work over the last year, have just been shortlisted as finalists of the ‘Housing Heroes Awards 2016’!

These national awards celebrate the ‘unsung’ heroes of the Housing world.

The team has surpassed their targets, delivered award winning schemes, created local jobs and provided learning and development opportunities for staff. Continue reading

#ProudTenant – Bank Holiday Inspiration

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St Newlyn East opening multiple houses box flowers_2Hoorah – it’s a Bank Holiday weekend! With the extra day off, we all start thinking about spending time with our families, getting out in the garden to prepare it for summer or doing that spring clean…..re-igniting a sense of pride in our community and surroundings.

One of our lovely residents, Jan from St. Agnes, recently emailed to tell us how things were going and how proud she was of her sons. Not only had they both been supportive through tough times but one had also done something for the benefit of others that she felt was worth sharing with us and others.

Continue reading

Communal Cleaning Annual Survey

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New communal cleaningOcean is committed to providing good quality services and in order to ensure that standards are maintained, we need your views as a customer.

We would be grateful if you would tell us how well you think we have delivered our Communal Cleaning service over the past 12 months.

Prize Draw

As a thank you for your time, all surveys submitted or returned will be entered into a prize draw for a £25 shopping voucher. This is why it is important to provide your contact details.

Deadline

Please complete this short questionnaire by Friday 15th April to help us improve our services. Continue reading