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ARCH annual report


The ARCH annual report for 2015-16 is now available to view.


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Annual Conference report 2015 10/12/2015

A record 58 delegates from 34 councils attended the Stock Retaining Authorities Conference held by ARCH, in association with HouseMark, at the University of Warwick on 3 and 4 December.


A packed programme opened with two insightful perspectives on the government's new housing agenda from Terrie Alafat, Chief Executive of the CIH, formerly Director of Housing at the DCLG, and John Healey MP, Shadow Cabinet Member for Housing and Planning. Robert Joyce presented findings from new research by the Institute of Fiscal Studies on the impact of planned changes in social rents policy. 


Paul Beardmore, Director of Housing at Manchester, Alan Carter from Cambridge and Duncan Vessey from South Cambridgeshire explained how their councils are taking advantage of the government's devolution deals and reshaping housing services to make a more effective contribution to growing their local economies. 


Nick Walkley, Chief Executive of Haringey, challenged delegates to face up to the implications of managing councils without government grant, with the imperative of growing their business rate base to sustain expenditure. In a memorable analogy, he claimed the culture shift will be as radical as the leap from indulgent prog-rock to punk.


The first day of the conference closed with the ARCH AGM and, after dinner, Brian Reilly from Wandsworth revealed a new talent as quizmaster. 


On the second day, Lucie-Marie Hagues told the story of how Capital One has transformed itself to adapt to a tougher market since the credit crunch, with interesting lessons for councils facing an equally tough environment.


Workshops looked at channel shift and innovation, procurement and the legal issues around using local authority companies to provide housing. 


The Conference ended with an economic outlook from Colin Ellis, Chief Credit Officer, Moodys, which included the sobering news that, for Britain, current growth rates may be as good as it gets.


Presentations are available in the member's area of our website to all ARCH members. We urge all delegates to complete the feedback forms circulated to them to help us work with HouseMark to make next year's event even better. 

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