Stevenage has won Council of the Year at The Affordable Housing Awards 2023.

The awards provide an opportunity to highlight excellent initiatives and share best practice learning from across the social housing sector throughout the UK.   

Stevenage Borough Council won the Council or Combined Authority of the Year category coming up against some tough competition, but pipped others to the post for its affordable housing development programme delivered by its entirely insourced Housing Development Team.  

The submission highlighted the council's innovative Housing Development programme, which it says is "positively impacting people’s lives in Stevenage", through the construction of developments containing mixed tenure housing.

The judges commended the programme for its diversity in delivering across all tenures including private sale and specialist supported housing. They recognised the skill and passion displayed by the staff working on these projects.   

Councillor Jeannette Thomas, deputy leader of the council and housing and housing development portfolio holder, said: “It’s great to have been recognised for the hard work that has been put into delivering our Housing Development programme.

"Increasing our council housing stock and reducing homelessness within the area has been challenging, but through recognising and taking on board innovative ideas we’ve managed to create a truly unique concept, which goes to show that Stevenage is leading the way.”  

Stevenage Borough Council's schemes provide a mixture of flats and houses and "are helping to increase the housing options available to the borough's residents".

The council is striving to use local supply chains that most impact the local economy, build to higher standards and improve neighbourhood surroundings. 

New developments also adhere to SBC's 5* Quality Housing approach, which ensures all properties being constructed as part of our housing developments meet five key criteria:  

  • Sustainable development.  
  • Genuinely affordable rents.  
  • Tenure blind design; ensuring there is no discernible difference in quality between Private & Council housing being built.   
  • Makes best use of land.  
  • Community led consultation.  

Leader of the council  Richard Henry said: “Awards such as these provide an opportunity for celebrating best practice and the driving force behind these successful projects that positively impact people throughout the UK in both the public and private sector.

"I’m extremely proud that Stevenage has been recognised with the top accolade of Council or Combined Authority of the Year and it’s fantastic to be able to share this news and put Stevenage on the map as one of those winners!”   

The UK Housing Awards are about identifying the social landlords, charities and partners, which work with their communities to deliver great outcomes for tenants and residents.