Gleadless questions about Sheffield Homes projects.

Brian Rainier made this Freedom of Information request to Sheffield Homes Limited

This request has been closed to new correspondence. Contact us if you think it should be reopened.

The request was partially successful.

Dear Sheffield Homes Limited,

How long has there been a Sheffield homes limited and are they the same organisation as Sheffield homes?

Who holds the most senior position at both organisations?

How many directors,executives, assistant directors,senior managers and assistant managers in actual numbers are there at both Sheffield homes and Sheffield homes limited, in all departments?

What is the total wage bill for all of these senior positions annually in each organisation?

How many complaints are currently outstanding in Gleadless valley on quality of work from the decent homes programme?

How much decent homes money has been spent on properties in Gleadless valley. Please state as annual expenditure.

How many homes are still awaiting new windows, doors and boilers under the decent homes programme.

When does a boiler count as needing replacing?
How many call outs is it reasonable to make before you consider a boiler needs replacing?

What is the average age of the boilers in properties on Gleadless Valley. How does this compare to other areas of the city.

How much has the Callow overcladding project cost to date?
What has each block of the 6 done cost?

Has there been any interruption and weakening of the mobile phone and Internet signal to these properties and the surrounding areas since the rain screen cladding and enclosure of balconies has been undertaken at "callow towers"

Does the district heating boiler use only recycled materials, or does it have a gas supply. If so what percentage of fuel is from recycled material such as wood? What percentage is from other sources and what are those sources?

How much annually do the new fans cost to run to extract steam from the bathroom and kitchen?Is the cost more when on boost?
How much annually does it cost through a consumers own meter to run the district heating and hot water?
What are the total annual additional charges for these additional electricity consuming feature?

Do you expect the overcladding to compensate for these additional costs to individual tenants in the money saved on heating?

Will the savings in heating the callow complex be passed to The Council, Sheffield Homes or individual tenants in a reduced district heating cost?

To what floor will the Sheffield fire service ladders reach on these Tower blocks?
What is the current response time for the fire service to these properties?
Is it legal for all tenants to have a key which opens the stairwell windows fully?
Is it legal for stairwell windows to fully open?

When is overcladding for the maisonettes at Gleadless valley being planned?

How many complaints have there been to the ombudsman?
Please make all responses to the Ombudsman about the Callow project available both from Sheffield Homes and John Mothersole.

Yours faithfully,

Brian Rainier

Sheffield Homes Limited

Dear Mr Rainier

Acknowledgement of your e-mail.

Thank you for contacting Sheffield Homes regarding your request for
information.

I have passed your email on to the relevant officer in our
Communications Team who will now follow the matter up. They will
respond to you as soon as possible.

If, in the meantime, you need to contact us further about this matter,
then please contact us either 0114 2930000 or 0114 2053333.

If you wish to write to us, the address is: Sheffield Homes, P.O. Box
1918, Sheffield S1 2XX

Kind regards

Sheffield Homes Customer Service Team

show quoted sections

Newbould Melissa, Sheffield Homes Limited

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Rainier

Please find below answers to your freedom of information request dated
21st December 2010

How long has there been a Sheffield homes limited and are they the same
organisation as Sheffield homes?

They are the same and Sheffield Homes Limited was incorporated on
18/11/2003. Responsibility for housing passing to the ALMO in April 2004

Who holds the most senior position at both organisations?

Janet Dean is the Chair on the Board of Directors comprising of 15 company
directors. Peter Morton is the most senior staff member as Chief
Executive.

How many directors, executives, assistant directors, senior managers and
assistant managers in actual numbers are there at both Sheffield homes and
Sheffield homes limited, in all departments?

Sheffield Homes and Sheffield Homes Limited are the same. All the post
below are positions of staff members and do not relate to formal Company
Directors

Directors: 4 (Peter Morton, Jonathan Shaw, Janet Parry and Jon Lovibond)
Assistant Directors: 8
Managers: 23.7 Full time Equivalents
Assistant Managers: 41.9 Full Time Equivalents

What is the total wage bill for all of these senior positions annually in
each organisation?

The annual costs is approximately: £4.1m including employers on-costs for
National Insurance and Pension

How many complaints are currently outstanding in Gleadless valley on
quality of work from the decent homes programme?

There are currently no outstanding complaints relating to the quality of
Decent Homes work in Gleedless Valley.

How much decent homes money has been spent on properties in Gleadless
valley. Please state as annual expenditure.

The annual decent homes spend on Gleadless Valley excluding Sharrow costs
and environmental works is estimated at :

2007/08 £9.5m
2008/09 £6.9m
2009/10 £8.3m
2010/11 to date £10.0m

How many homes are still awaiting new windows, doors and boilers under the
decent homes programme?

The Decent Homes Programme has already been completed on Gleadless Valley
with the exception of cladding work to Callow Tower Blocks which is in the
final stages. Any homes where work was refused / or access not obtained
will not be brought up to the decent homes standard until 2014/15 at the
earliest. Currently our stock records indicate that 27 homes may require
new windows, 197 homes may require new doors and 551 homes may require a
new central heating boiler.

When does a boiler count as needing replacing?

Over the last 12 to 18 months Sheffield Homes has developed a heating
replacement strategy with Sheffield City Council. This strategy has
enabled us to group all heating systems into 2 main categories. These are
obsolete systems and non obsolete systems. The obsolete systems have then
been grouped into 4 priorities.

The priorities are as follows:
Priority 1 - All conventional flue boilers, all back boilers
Priority 2 - Room sealed boilers with asbestos in the flue
Priority 3 - a group of 15 boilers were parts are not available
Priority 4 - a boiler type which is becoming increasingly difficult to
obtain parts

The above strategy has enabled us to focus on what we believe to be the
boilers that are an increased risk regarding Health and Safety regarding
emissions from the flue and those that we would struggle to repair if they
broke down. The strategy is not necessarily age related as some older
boilers have been proven to last longer than the newer boilers. However
generally it is the older boilers i.e. those installed pre 1992 which are
replacing on what we call our obsolete heating replacement programme. In
addition to the above we do have heating breakdowns which cannot be
repaired and these one off replacements are carried out as and when
required (currently about 550 per year). As the obsolete heating programme
develops then we expect the number of breakdowns to reduce over time

How many call outs is it reasonable to make before you consider a boiler
needs replacing?

The heating operative should be in a position to diagnose the problem with
the boiler on the first visit. We do have many types of boiler and so the
experience of the heating operative will sometimes determine whether the
diagnosis is correct first time. We have over the last 8 years fitted the
same boiler type which no doubt aids diagnosis if and when these boilers
fail but we do have thousands of other boiler types.

In addition to the heating operative both Kier Sheffield LLP and Sheffield
Homes have trained heating staff who can attend to give a second opinion
if they are requested to do so. Usually if we receive more than three
repeat call outs then this would result in the issue being escalated to
these heating staff. However we will try and avoid replacement unless it
is necessary. We replace approx 550 boilers each year as a result of
breakdown.

What is the average age of the boilers in properties on Gleadless Valley?
How does this compare to other areas of the city.

The average age of central heating boilers on Gleadless Valley is 10 years
old. The City wide average age is 11
years.

How much has the Callow over cladding project cost to date? What has each
block of the 6 done cost?

To date (end Dec 2010) the external cladding work has cost £10.483m.
The forecast average cost on completion of the work of the non sheltered
block is £1.667m and the sheltered block £2.146m

Has there been any interruption and weakening of the mobile phone and
Internet signal to these properties and the surrounding areas since the
rain screen cladding and enclosure of balconies has been undertaken at
"callow towers"

Please refer to attached letter to Lovell Partnership from Alumet Systems
(UK) Ltd.
<<Brian Rainer - Callow Mobile Strength.pdf>>

Does the district heating boiler use only recycled materials, or does it
have a gas supply. If so what percentage of fuel is from recycled material
such as wood? What percentage is from other sources and what are those
sources?

The district boiler in this area runs on 100% Gas

How much annually do the new fans cost to run to extract steam from the
bathroom and kitchen? Is the cost more when on boost?

The total running costs for the year for one flat on Callow (with three
fans) would be around £15.00. This is based on the trickle ventilation
running 24 hours a day and the boost fan running for an average of 2 hours
a day. Having the boost function on more than this average would cost
more.

Do you expect the over cladding to compensate for these additional costs
to individual tenants in the money saved on heating?

No

Will the savings in heating the callow complex be passed to The Council,
Sheffield Homes or individual tenants in a reduced district heating cost?

Any savings made on the district heating account would be pooled within
this ring-fenced account and passed back to tenants with district heating.
This would either be as a price reduction, or mean slower increases as
these savings would offset general increases in costs. Because the
district heating account is a pooled across all sites savings on one
particular building are shared with all district heating users to make
this fair to all.

To what floor will the Sheffield fire service ladders reach on these Tower
blocks?

Fire fighters would normally fight these fires using the communal
staircase as there are dry risers on each floor. With regard to fire
fighting apparatus this can only be answered by your local fire service

What is the current response time for the fire service to these
properties?

Having had discussions with the fire service the average response time is
8 minutes. For more accurate times this can only be answered by your local
fire service

Is it legal for all tenants to have a key which opens the stairwell
windows fully? Is it legal for stairwell windows to fully open?

There are no legal requirements for tenants to have keys for the communal
windows. The communal parts of the building are the responsibility of
Sheffield Homes

When is over cladding for the maisonettes at Gleadless valley being
planned?

Sheffield Homes is not aware of any plans to over clad medium rise
maisonettes at this present time.

How many complaints have there been to the ombudsman? Please make all
responses to the Ombudsman about the Callow project available both from
Sheffield Homes and John Mothersole.

There have been 2 complaints to the Ombudsman since January 2010 regarding
the work being carried out on the Callow Block.

We consider the information held in the correspondence to the Ombudsman to
be personal information and therefore we would not disclose it under
section 40 of the freedom of information act

If you are unhappy with the service you have received in relation to your
request and wish to make a complaint, you should write to: Sheffield
Homes, PO Box 1918, Sheffield, S1 2XX or email
[Sheffield Homes Limited request email]. You can also visit one of our public
offices or call us on 0114 293 0000 (North) or 0114 205 3333 (South).
Please refer to our Complaints, Praise and Suggestions leaflet available
to download from our website at
[1]http://www.sheffieldhomes.org.uk/myCommu...
or by post by contacting us. If you are not content with the outcome your
complaint, you may apply directly to the Information Commissioner for a
decision. Generally, the Commissioner cannot make a decision unless you
have exhausted our complaints procedure. The Information Commissioner can
be contacted at: The Information Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House,
Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF.

show quoted sections

Dear Newbould Melissa,

Thank you for your reply.
Could you please clarify a few points.

I understand there are outstanding complaints about the decent homes work in sizeable numbers for Gleadless Valley. Could you clarify this.

What has each of the 6 Callow tower blocks cost. You only provided replies for two. I would like the figures for all 6 of them please.

Could you tell me how the running costs for the fans at Callow were calculated? How many units do they use per hour and at what price per unit was this calculated?

I asked about decent homes work on Gleadless Valley so i do not understand why you referred to Sharrow. What is environmental work? Is it decent homes work? Are the figures for this environmental work included in what you provided? If so please give me the decent homes figures.

Are tenants told they have the right to a 2nd opinion
if they have more than three call outs for the boiler?

I asked is it legal for tenants to have a key for the stairwell windows which open fully?

I asked is it legal for the stairwell windows to fully open. Please provide a reply to this.

I believe that replies to the ombudsman concerning this project are important to the residents of Callow and the Gleadless Valley. The responses about this project are not personal and it is in the public tax payer interest to see the responses. Anything private can be blanked out. The ombudsman is a public body and responses should surely be publicly available.

Yours sincerely,

Brian Rainier

HomesComms, Sheffield Homes Limited

Dear Mr Rainer

Please find below the information you requested

1) I understand there are outstanding complaints about the decent homes work in sizeable numbers for Gleadless Valley. Could you clarify this.

Sheffield Homes have no outstanding complaints.

3) Could you tell me how the running costs for the fans at Callow were calculated? How many units do they use per hour and at what price per unit was this calculated?

Sheffield Homes holds no further information regarding this. We can confirm that the extraction system was specifically designed for the Callow flats. Lovell's have confirmed that the costs should be between £1.50 - £2.50 per week to provide ventilation to 3 rooms (WC, bathroom and kitchen). This equates to £78-£130 per year or £26 to £43 per fan per year.

4) What is environmental work? Are the figures for this environmental work included in what you provided?

We have spent £37m to contractors on bringing homes up the Sheffield Decent Homes Standard on Gleadless Valley. This does not include the supply cost of kitchens and windows supplied by Sharrow (Contractors) or any environmental improvements such as door entry work which can be funded from the Decent Homes programme.

5) Are tenants told they have the right to a 2nd opinion if they have more than three call outs for the boiler?

Sheffield Homes has a responsibility to make sure that all heating systems when inspected are left in good working order. If we experience regular call outs for breakdowns then heating will be put onto the future planned replacement programme. Sheffield Homes spends approximately £1.7m each year replacing systems that regularly breakdown or cannot be repaired when Kier are called out. We do not offer a 'tenant second opinion' for call outs with tenants. However, Sheffield Homes will respond to any enquiries or concerns raised by tenants about their heating systems. If a complaint is received then the complaints process will offer a second opinion if a tenant is not satisfied with the first response to a complaint.

6) Is it legal for tenants to have a key for the stairwellwindows which open fully?

There are no legal requirements for tenants to have keys

7) Is it legal for the stairwell windows to fully open

It is legal for the stairwell windows to fully open

8) I believe that replies to the ombudsman concerning this project are important to the residents of Callow and the Gleadless Valley. The responses about this project are not personal and it is in the public tax payer interest to see the responses. Anything private can be blanked out. The ombudsman is a public body and responses should surely be publicly available.

Sheffield Homes requires more time on this matter as we are waiting for a response from the Ombudsman.

If you are unhappy with the service you have received in relation to your request and wish to make a complaint, you should write to: Sheffield Homes, PO Box 1918, Sheffield, S1 2XX or email [Sheffield Homes Limited request email]. You can also visit one of our public offices or call us on 0114 293 0000 (North) or 0114 205 3333 (South). Please refer to our Complaints, Praise and Suggestions leaflet available to download from our website at http://www.sheffieldhomes.org.uk/myCommu... or by post by contacting us. If you are not content with the outcome your complaint, you may apply directly to the Information Commissioner for a decision. Generally, the Commissioner cannot make a decision unless you have exhausted our complaints procedure. The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: The Information Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF

Regards

Sheffield Homes

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Dear HomesComms,
Thank you for your information. You omitted to reply about the cost of each of the Callow tower blocks. I would be grateful if you could send this

Yours sincerely,

Brian Rainier