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Peabody launches vision for communities in the 21st century

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Peabody launches vision for communities in the 21st century


Published by Neil Young for Peabody in Housing and also in Central Government, Communities, Health, Local Government

  • Enhanced focus on building communities and providing education, training and skills
  • Planned redevelopment on estate at Clapham Junction to take vision forward
  • An ambitious programme to combat climate change
  • Design principles created by world-renowned architect Sir Terry Farrell
  • Key asks of Government and community partners to ensure vision can be fully delivered 

Peabody has launched a new vision for communities in the 21st century. The vision sets out an integrated strategy with seven core principles and 10 key elements for social housing and community regeneration. Peabody has also announced plans for a redevelopment project at its estate at Clapham Junction to bring this vision into reality.

The launch of the 21st Century Peabody report is the culmination of work undertaken over the last two years with Peabody’s residents, the Institute of Public Policy Research (the ippr), De Montfort University and Farrells architects.

The result is an ambitious vision for how estates and communities should look and operate in order to provide residents with the best possible chances in life. Peabody wants to transform estates into vibrant places by opening them up to the wider community, making the most of existing land and homes, creating compelling public and shared space and putting design quality first.

The report outlines plans for making these changes, the result of research into the social and economic future of London, talking to residents and working with climate change experts and world-class architects. The plans range from giving residents balconies to adopting the highest environmental standards for estate refurbishment and transforming estates from the fortress-style of old to inclusive and welcoming places, open to the whole of the surrounding community.

Alongside these physical changes, the 21st Century Peabody report also sets out a series of ancillary services and facilities for residents – over and above the provision of a good home – that will allow Peabody to offer a tailored relationship with each resident. Through providing skills, training opportunities and other activities such as health advice and tailored services Peabody will offer a one stop shop to meet residents’ needs and help them achieve their aspirations for the future.

Pam Alexander, Peabody’s chair, said of the new vision:

'Peabody has always been more than a landlord; we want our communities to be a springboard as well as a safety net for residents. We believe that a 21st century social landlord should not content itself with simply doing the basics well. Our aim must be to help our residents and the community of which they are a part to expand their horizons and feel that more is achievable. We want to open up London to the Peabody community and open up the Peabody community to London.

'Today we have set out clear guidelines to achieve our aspirations for existing estates and residents and we are committed to delivering this. We hope that this report will stimulate our many partners to work with us on the challenges, contribute to the debate and support us in our mission to provide a good home, a real sense of purpose and a strong feeling of belonging for all.'

In order to ensure that real change takes place Peabody has committed to delivering this vision on the ground through:

  • A major redevelopment project – An ambitious programme of works planned for its estate at Clapham Junction to put the principles of the vision into action;
  • A climate change strategy – A programme of home improvements, ‘green’ ambassadors, car clubs and the latest green technology.

As well as making their own pledges for change, Peabody has also called for support from the rest of the housing sector, local and regional partners and the Government. Peabody has asked Government to:

  • Consider a wide review of the system of rents, subsidy and personal benefits to develop a model for providing housing that offers more choice at different rents and shared ownership proportions, rather than the current focus on providing a low rent option for life.
  • Make the most of our current housing stock by supporting housing associations to ensure existing homes meet the needs of future residents.
  • Make achieving ambitious carbon emissions reduction targets realistic by harnessing powerful partnership working between central and local Government, energy suppliers, housing associations and residents to create a viable funding system.
  • Allow housing associations to be more central to programmes that target long term unemployed people by combining or streamlining funding sources.
  • Undertake a review on how the lettings process works to create a system involving local authorities, housing associations and the private sector that enables the most vulnerable people to be housed alongside others in more balanced and sustainable communities.

Stephen Howlett, Peabody’s chief executive, said:

'The launch of 21st Century Peabody is an exciting moment in our almost 150 year history but it’s really just the first step in a project that we see spanning the next 25 years and encompassing the entirety of the social housing sector as well as our partners in local, regional and national Government.

'We’ve already got plans to implement the vision on the ground at our estate at Clapham Junction and, once this project is complete we hope that these new principles will be rolled out across the sector.'

– Ends –

For more information or a copy of the report please contact Peabody Media Relations Officer Neil Young on (020) 7021 4210 or .

Notes for editors

  • Peabody was established in 1862 and is now one of London’s oldest and largest housing associations, as well as being a charity and community regeneration agency. It owns or manages 17,500 properties across the capital, providing homes to over 50,000 people. Peabody’s mission is to make London a city of opportunity for all by ensuring as many people as possible have a good home, a real sense of purpose and a strong feeling of belonging.
  • Peabody spends £3m on community support projects and helps more than 300 people into jobs and around 1,500 into training every year.

About the research

  • The Institute of Public Policy Research (ippr) talked to Peabody residents and established their wants and needs for the future. The think tank also carried out research into the economic and social trends that will shape London over time and compiled international case studies on best practice in creating sustainable communites.
  • De Montfort University assessed the implications of addressing climate change through adapting homes and residents’ behaviour.
  • Farrells helped to bring all of this work together and establish how it could be applied to existing estates.


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