Marcus works locally, and Brenda is a keen gardener; her garden has won many awards at the annual ‘Bury in Bloom’ competition.
Marcus is a very active member of the community and is the Chair of the Howard Estate Association of Residents and Tenants (HEART).
“HEART is for tenants and homeowners to bring any issues they have to the attention of the estate representatives. We want to try and make the community a great place to live. HEART is a non-political, non-profit organisation run entirely by volunteers, and anyone from the Howard estate is welcome to join us.”
If you are interested, you can find out more on their Facebook page.
Living in their current home
The couple moved into their current home 13 years ago. They were both experiencing health issues at the time and needed to move closer to local amenities. They moved home via a mutual exchange.
A mutual exchange allows a resident to ‘swap’ their home with another council or housing association resident. If you are interested in a mutual exchange, click here to find out more.
Marcus explains, “We have had a few ups and downs with our health, and Brenda has Parkinson’s disease, which means we needed to be closer to the town and shops”.
It was important that Brenda could remain as independent as possible.
“We are so close to everything now. The local shops are brilliant, the bus service is exactly what we need, and we have the best postman who will often knock on the window to check in on Brenda.”
Havebury as a landlord
When talking about us as a landlord, Brenda comments on how our services have improved over the past few years.
“If the boiler goes wrong, we call you in. If the light fitting fails, we know we can call you. It takes the worry away and the pressure of having to do everything ourselves.”
Marcus is also a member of our Tenant Voice Panel (TVP) and explains a bit more about why he decided to get involved.
“I received an email inviting me to participate, and I thought, why not! I think because I am Chair of HEART, I thought I better join in to see what is going on. It’s also nice as a tenant to be able to have a say with the people who are running the organisation”.
He continues to say that it felt less like “them and us” and more like a community feeling. He felt heard and listened to.
When asked if he would recommend other residents join the TVP:
“I would say get involved. At least you can have your say. There is no point in moaning about something behind closed doors when you can do something about it”.