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  • Writer's pictureDavid Ball

New Housing Project in Audenshaw, Manchester

As part of our drive to find a new way of addressing homelessness in the UK Cornerstone Place is pleased to announce that we are are turning a Victorian villa in Tameside into 13 self-contained apartments, thanks to a six-figure funding package from Unity Trust Bank, The Key Fund and Power To Change.

Richard Kennedy and David Ball, co-founders of social enterprise Cornerstone Place, will oversee the development in Audenshaw before handing it over to homeless Greater Manchester-based homelessness charity Stepping Stone Projects to take over the building to provide vital services to local people.

Cornerstone Place works with local authorities and leading charity clients across the country such as SSP to source the properties and development opportunities, arrange funding and manage builds to deliver sustainable social impact in local communities.

Work will be completed before the end of the year and once finished, SSP will work with Ashton Pioneer Homes, who will ensure property and service standards, and Tameside Council to provide homes and important support services. Among these will be access to training and employment help to support residents who would otherwise be facing life on the streets. The property will be let for an initial term of 15 years representing up to 71,200 ‘homeless bed nights’.

David comments:

A member of my family spent a lot of time on the streets so this has personal resonance for me, and Richard has the social sector running through his veins. Our business model is a way to empower, strengthen and increase the sustainability of homeless charities. Our ambition is to provide 1,000 rooms over the next five years.

Richard adds:

This project is hopefully the first of many in Greater Manchester and would not have been possible without the tireless work of the professional team behind this transaction including Bates Wells and the additional capital provided by The Key Fund and Power to Change. We hope this capital will now create a social return in Manchester for many years if not decades!

With homelessness expected to increase in the coming months as the furlough scheme closes and the ban on evictions comes to an end, it’s vital that housing providers, charities and other support services work together to provide much-needed solutions.

Dave Smith, chief executive of Stepping Stone Projects, has said.

As Cornerstone Place co-founder David Ball explains:

Our model is unique in that it brings buildings and funding to charities, develops the buildings then gradually shifts the ownership to the charity. We are thrilled to be working with SSP and APH on this project.


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