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The world is changing…join the #colneconversation

A small housing association is proving it has a big voice by influencing the debate about what the future looks like for the sector.

Colne, a 3,000 home association in East Anglia, today launches an ambitious campaign – the World is Changing…. featuring fresh insights from leaders and experts including:

  •  David Orr, NHF’s Chief Executive
  •  Will Quince MP
  •  leading strategist Martin Wheatley
  • CIH Vice President Alison Inman
  • Colne’s Chief Executive Sara Thakkar

The campaign, which runs until next year, kicks off today with a thought-provoking film called The World is Changing. It is aimed at a strategic audience – decision makers in the national and regional housing sector, local authorities, funders and community partners.

It continues with online debate at and on social media #colneconversation.

Contributors – which also include regional voices from East Anglia – were asked to give their views on the challenges the sector faces and what it can do to embrace the change.

Sara Thakkar said:

“The world has changed and Colne is embracing it. We  all need to think differently to ensure  we can provide more homes and  continuously seek to be better.

“To achieve this in uncertain times we will need to be bolder.  We are realistic at Colne and know that we cannot do it alone. The “World is Changing” is our opportunity to show we continue big picture thinking whilst remaining locally focused. We are here for the long term and we continue to help solve the housing crisis.”

She hopes the campaign will reach all corners of the affordable housing sector and leaders who partner with it.

Sara added: “There are some fascinating insights to share in the film and I am sure it will spark some lively debate.

“This is just the start of the conversation, we encourage colleagues in the sector to join in on our Twitter page #colneconversation and on our website.”

David Orr, Chief Executive of the National Housing Federation, said:

“Now is the time for housing associations to step up and show that we’re perfectly placed to tackle the housing challenges our country faces. Boldness and innovation are absolutely key to delivering our ambition and it’s great to see Colne launching a conversation on this important topic. Let’s make this the starting point for a valuable debate on housing in the East of England.”


Other contributors are Mary Gibbons, Chief Executive of Hundred Houses Society,  Adrian Pritchard, chief executive of Colchester Council and Tim Lucas, of Braintree District Council .

You can join the debate and share your views and ideas at and on social media #colneconversation.

The campaign, agreed by Colne earlier this year, is timely as it follows the NHF’s call in Housing Week for housing association to show how they are leading through change.

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The world is changing…join the #colneconversation