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Merseyside community group receives World Book Day donations

Liberty has delivered over 150 books to a community group as part of its social value commitments with Fusion21 client Riverside as part of World Book Day.

For the annual bookworm celebration held on March 7th 2024, staff in Knowsley, collected new and used books (in good condition) suitable for children of all ages.

The office also embraced their inner bookworm and dressed up in their favourite character or in the theme of a popular children’s book.

In total, 166 books were collected and donated to Torrington Drive Community Association (TDCA), an organisation based in Halewood, Liverpool which closely works in partnership with Riverside.

The TDCA have a small cafe and local shop on site which both sells items a low prices or for free to support those in the community.

This allows families to select the required items they chose and also then run them through the till rather than being handed a bag of items with no choice on what’s inside. This provides children with a positive image around receiving help.

Gary See, Chief Operating Officer at TDCA, said: “We express our sincere appreciation to Liberty Group and their colleagues for their generous donation of books. Their contribution will bring joy and knowledge to children and families in our community, enriching their lives and promoting a love for learning.”

Liberty took home Awareness Campaign of the Year for its Gas Safety Week initiative at the debut Heating and Plumbing Monthly Awards.

Hosted at The Midland Hotel in Manchester on Friday 23rd February, members of Liberty’s Marketing and Communications team and operational managers attended the ceremony to receive the award.

The award was in recognition of Liberty’s Gas Safety Week campaign, delivered in September 2023. The campaign, led by Liberty’s Marketing and Communications team centred on a new approach to social value campaign delivery for the business, with the marketing team creating a toolkit of ready-made engagement events and ideas for colleagues in the operational field to utilise and share with their clients to discuss what Gas Safety Week is about, and how Liberty could work with them to celebrate it in their neighbourhoods.

The suggested events included hosting multi-agency events and using the week to engage external agencies with the messages of Gas Safety Week, conducting neighbourhood action days where teams of trained engineers would door-knock to deliver advice, check for working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms (replacing or installing for free if not present), and engagement with young people though a short but fun lesson plan for primary schools.

One client, Magenta Living in the Wirral, didn’t want any specific event, but wanted Liberty to support them to raise awareness of what happens during a gas service appointment to help them increase access rates – an activity which aligned perfectly to the goals of the Gas Safety Week campaign so Liberty was happy to support with filming a short educational video, and provided an engineer to explain it all.

Once events were planned and agreed with clients, Liberty’s Marketing and Communications team promoted the events before they happened, specifically for roadshow/drop-in type events aimed at having customers and the local population pop by for information. These press releases also included the key safety messages from Gas Safety Week to maximise the reach of these life saving messages.

A total of seven local press releases were issued advertising the events which resulted in 12 featured articles being published in the areas where events were taking place which included: Wigan, Salford, Ellesmere Port, Merthyr Valley, East Devon, Crawley and Portsmouth. These reached over one million customers and local residents.

The whole campaign was supported through Liberty’s social media and website platforms which were used throughout the week to expand the awareness of the events being delivered, and remind our diverse follower groups of the dangers of illegal gas work and the importance of annual safety checks.

Want to learn more about the HPM Awards, including details of all the winners, and more photos from the event? Just visit the HPM Awards’ website.

Liberty named on £820m Fusion21 framework

Liberty has been appointed to multiple lots on a new national Heating, Renewables and Electrical Framework by Fusion21.

Through this framework, Liberty will be available to deliver domestic heating (combustibles, electric and air source heat pumps), commercial heating, electrical testing and solar PV and battery storage works across England, Scotland, and Wales. And was ranked as the number 1 contractor for domestic heating (combustibles, electric and air source heat pumps) in the Scottish and Welsh regions.

The framework, worth up to £820m, has been setup to help the owners of domestic and non-domestic buildings to ensure they are safe and compliant in respect of heating and electrical installations and to support their journey to carbon net zero.

Alongside traditional heating installations and electrical testing/works, it also covers innovative technologies dedicated to sustainable heating solutions (including ground source and air source heating) and quality assurance audits. The framework is specifically designed to support public sector organisations, including housing, education, and healthcare providers.

Peter Francis, Executive Director of Operations at Fusion21, said: “We’ve listened to member and supply chain feedback and streamlined previous lots to create a new generation of the Heating, Renewables and Electrical Framework which combines a full heating offer, renewable technology, quality assurance audits and two electrical lots.

“In addition to working with a team of technical procurement experts and a rigorously assessed and approved supply chain, Fusion21 members accessing this offer will benefit from a compliant and efficient route to market, flexible call-off options and geographical coverage across the UK, down to a regional and local level.

“As with all Fusion21’s frameworks, this latest framework enables our members to deliver social value within their communities, aligned to their organisational priorities.”

Learn more about the framework at www.fusion21.co.uk

Liberty secures place on LHC Asset Safety and Compliance Framework

Liberty has earned a place on LHC’s Asset Safety and Compliance Framework for four years.

The business is featured in Workstream 4 for Domestic and Commercial Gas Servicing, Installations and maintenance, as well as Workstream 5 for fixed wire testing and remedials.

Providing national coverage, Liberty has been successful in being ranked first and second in the following lots and locations:

Lot 4a Domestic Gas Heating – Liberty ranked 2nd place in the below regions:

  • North East England
  • North West England
  • London
  • Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire
  • Gloucestershire, Wilshire, Bristol, Bath
  • Dorset and Somerset
  • Devon
  • North Wales
  • Mid Wales
  • South East and West Wales

Lot 4b Commercial Gas Heating – Liberty ranked 1st place in the below regions:

  • North East England
  • North West England
  • Yorkshire and The Humber
  • East Midlands
  • West Midlands
  • East of England
  • Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire
  • Surrey East & West Sussex
  • Hampshire & Isle of Wight
  • Kent
  • Gloucestershire, Wilshire, Bristol, Bath
  • Dorset and Somerset
  • Devon
  • North Wales
  • Mid Wales

And 2nd place in the below regions:

  • South East and West Wales
  • Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire
  • Essex

Lot 5a Fixed Wire Testing and Remedials – Liberty ranked 1st place in the below regions:

  • North East England
  • North West England
  • Yorkshire and The Humber
  • East Midlands
  • West Midlands
  • East of England
  • Gloucestershire, Wiltshire, Bristol, Bath
  • Dorset and Somerset
  • Devon
  • Hampshire & Isle of Wight

2nd Place in the below regions:

  • Mid Wales
  • South East Wales
  • South West Wales
  • Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire

To learn more about the LHC Asset Safety and Compliance Framework, visit their website here.

Liberty marks milestone of planting 500 trees in Salford for ForHousing

Property services business Liberty recently celebrated planting its 500th tree for social housing landlord ForHousing as part of its annual winter tree planting programme across Salford.

The initiative, aimed at enhancing the local environment and contributing to carbon reduction efforts, was begun in 2016 by ForHousing, with Liberty overseeing the planting.

50 trees have been planted each year by Liberty’s Arboricultural Officer, David Diaczuk, who is responsible for maintaining the trees and improving the environmental and wildlife benefits they bring across ForHousing’s neighbourhoods in Walkden, Eccles, Swinton, Irlam & Cadishead, concentrating on sheltered schemes as the trees have a better chance of establishment.

For the 2023 programme, ForHousing has ordered 50 established saplings with all the tree species carefully chosen by David Diaczuk to maximise their environmental impact. These species include Maple, Alder, Birch, Hornbeam, Pine, Oak, Willow, and Wild Plum, each contributing to the diversity and resilience of the local ecosystem.

Mark Lowe, Director of Sustainability at ForHousing said: “We’re really passionate at ForHousing about making a positive impact on the environment and playing our part to help tackle climate change, so it’s fantastic to see ForHousing planting its 500th tree in Salford.

“Planting trees is a really important action we can take to reduce our carbon footprint and help us meet net zero targets. We are dedicated to making our housing schemes greener and more sustainable and we hope to keep planting more trees to further our commitment to environmental improvement.

“This commitment also extends beyond Salford. We are collaborating with the ‘City of Trees’ charity and Oldham Borough Council on initiatives to promote green spaces and community well-being in Oldham.”

David Diaczuk, Arboricultural Officer at Liberty said: “It’s been a real pleasure to be part of ForHousing’s winter tree planting programme for the last eight years. Research has shown that increase in mature crown cover from trees increases property value. It reduces environmental heat in the summer and is a significant benefit to wildlife.

“Arguably, the most consequential subject in Arboriculture for the past 20 years has been the effect of Ash Dieback (Hymenoscyphus fraxineus). The latest research shows that with no cure, the Ash trees in the UK and most of Europe will be on the edge of extermination in the next decade. Fitton Hill will lose 100% of its Ash trees due to this fungus. This is partly why strategic tree planting is essential, and that we plant trees for future generations to enjoy its benefits.”

Liberty retains two heating contracts with Leeds City Council and Exeter City Council worth over £21.6 million.

National property services business Liberty is pleased to announce its retention of the Domestic Gas Servicing and Installation contract for Exeter City Council, as well as the Gas Domestic Heating Contract for Leeds City Council.

The three-year contract with Exeter City Council, valued at £1.4 million annually, covers gas safety services for over 4,000 homes.

The contract also includes:

  • Two apprenticeship positions
  • 90 volunteer hours being given by the Liberty team
  • Active engagement at local tenant events
  • Four work experience and mentorship programmes each year, in collaboration with Exeter College
  • Additionally, Liberty will provide five complimentary decarbonisation surveys, complete with monitoring kit installations, and the provision of five retrofit plans and decarbonisation reports.

Over in Leeds, the £4 million per annum contract with the council sees Liberty being retained for an initial period of 4 years, starting in April of 2024 with the possibility of four one-year extensions.

The contract will see Liberty deliver gas servicing and repairs as well as the fitting of new boilers to over 16,000 homes.

The contract also includes:

  • Hosting two mental health awareness and crime reduction sessions annually.
  • Donations to community projects at the start of each contract year.
  • Liberty staff will dedicate 392 hours per year to volunteering.
  • Host CV/mock interview sessions quarterly.
  • To support local businesses, all materials will be sourced in Leeds, and Liberty will hold four “Meet the Buyer” events for local suppliers.

Ray Jones, Group Managing Director of Liberty said: “We are thrilled to continue our partnerships with both Exeter City Council and Leeds City Council and remain committed to ensuring the safety and wellbeing of those communities through the provision of high-quality gas services.

“We look forward to providing employment opportunities, apprenticeships, work experience and volunteering initiatives, further strengthening our ties with the community and helping to make a positive impact.”

Gerard Tinsdale, Chief Officer of Housing at Leeds City Council said: “We are delighted to continue working with Liberty on our gas servicing and maintenance contract. Gas compliance is always one of key drivers for keeping our customers safe and the additional social value commitments made by Liberty will be of great benefit to the communities involved.”

Liberty offers the full range of property services, and its teams are experts in reactive and planned maintenance across all technical disciplines, refurbishments, mechanical and electrical projects, construction, and whole-home decarbonisation.

Liberty’s Gas Safety Week campaign shortlisted for HPM Award

Property services business Liberty has been shortlisted for ‘Awareness Campaign of the Year’ at the Heating & Plumbing Monthly Awards for its Gas Safety Week (GSW) 2023 campaign.

The organisation launched its biggest GSW campaign to date in September 2023. The Marketing and Communication’s team created a toolkit of ready-made engagement events and ideas for colleagues in the operational field, with the ask for them to reach out to their clients and discuss what Gas Safety Week is all about, and how we could celebrate it in their neighbourhoods.

The suggestions included hosting multi-agency events and using the week to engage external agencies with the messages of Gas Safety Week, conducting neighbourhood action days where teams of trained engineers would door-knock to deliver advice, check for working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms (replacing or installing for free if not present), and engagement with young people though a short but fun lesson plan for primary schools.

Once events were planned and agreed with clients, the Marketing and Communications team helped to promote the events before they happened, specifically for roadshow/drop-in type events aimed at having customers and the local population pop by for information. These press releases also included the key safety messages from Gas Safety Week to maximise the reach of these life saving messages.

A total of seven local press releases were issued advertising the events which resulted in 12 featured articles being published in the areas where events were taking place which included: Wigan, Salford, Ellesmere Port, Merthyr Valley, East Devon, Crawley and Portsmouth.

The campaign also made use of Liberty’s social media and website platforms throughout the week to expand the awareness of the events being delivered, and remind the diverse follower group of the dangers of illegal gas work and the importance of annual safety checks.

The week was a resounding success with over one million people reached and engaged with the key messages of the week across the whole campaign.

For more information about the Heating & Plumbing Monthly Awards visit their website at HPM Awards 2023 – Home Page

Property services business Liberty has retained two domestic heating contracts with Wrexham County Borough Council (WCBC) worth a combined £1.3m per annum.

The new heating programme contract was awarded via mini-competition from the council’s framework, the maintenance and servicing contract was awarded via a competitive contract and are the latest in a long-term partnership which has seen Liberty work with WCBC since 2014.

The 4-year contract, started in October 2023, and Liberty has been awarded a £700,000 per annum Gas Servicing and Maintenance contract where Liberty will ensure the safety and efficiency of heating systems in the borough as well as delivering repairs and maintenance to them as required.

Liberty also secures a 1-year Installation of Domestic Heating Systems contract, valued at over £575,000 to deliver a programme of planned new heating installations to 150 domestic properties. The new state-of-the-art boilers will replace aging system with more efficient models helping tenants save money on their heating bills.

Operations Director for the North, Lawrence Gilsenan, said: “These contracts goes beyond mere heating servicing, maintenance and installations; it’s a commitment to keep people safe and warm in their homes. With proper long-term maintenance and the installation of state-of-the-art boilers, we’re fostering a warmer and more efficient future for the people of Wrexham. We have a fantastic long-term working partnership with WCBC and we will continue to support them deliver great value for money.”

Councillor David A Bithell, Deputy Leader of the Council and Lead Member for Housing said: “We are pleased to be working alongside our long-standing partners on the new heating programme contracts. It is important to us that we are committed to keeping homes warm and reduce cost for our contact holders, particularly over the upcoming winter months. We will continue to support Liberty throughout the process and look forward to further working together.”

Mae busnes gwasanaethau eiddo Liberty wedi cadw dau gontract gwresogi domestig gyda Chyngor Bwrdeistref Sirol Wrecsam (gwerth dros £1.3 miliwn y flwyddyn).

Cafodd y contract gwresogi newydd ei ddyfarnu ar ôl cystadleuaeth fach yn unol â fframwaith y Cyngor, a dyfarnwyd y contract cynnal a chadw a gwasanaethu drwy broses gystadleuol – a rhain yw’r contractau diweddaraf yn y bartneriaeth hirdymor gyda Liberty (sydd wedi bod yn gweithio gyda’r Cyngor ers 2014).

Mae’r contract 4 blynedd, a ddechreuodd ym mis Hydref 2023, yn ddyfarniad o £700,000 y flwyddyn i wasanaethu a chynnal a chadw systemau nwy; a bydd Liberty yn sicrhau diogelwch ac effeithlonrwydd ein systemau gwresogi yn y fwrdeistref yn ogystal ag atgyweirio a chynnal a chadw systemau yn ôl yr angen.

Mae Liberty hefyd wedi sicrhau contract blwyddyn gwerth £575,000 i osod systemau gwresogi domestig i ddarparu rhaglen o waith gosod systemau gwresogi newydd i 150 o eiddo domestig. Bydd y boeleri newydd sbon danlli yn fwy effeithlon na’r hen system, gan helpu tenantiaid i leihau eu biliau gwresogi.

Meddai Lawrence Gilsenan, Cyfarwyddwr Gweithrediadau’r Gogledd: “Mae’r contractau hyn yn fwy na chontractau gwasanaethu, cynnal a chadw a gosod systemau gwresogi, maen nhw’n ymrwymiad i gadw pobl yn ddiogel a chynnes yn eu cartrefi. Gyda gwaith cynnal a chadw hirdymor cywir a gosod y boeleri newydd diweddaraf, rydym ni’n meithrin dyfodol cynhesach a mwy effeithlon ar gyfer pobl Wrecsam. Mae gennym ni bartneriaeth waith hirdymor wych gyda CBSW a byddwn yn parhau i’w cefnogi nhw i ddarparu gwerth gwych am arian.”

Meddai’r Cyng. David A Bithell, Dirprwy Arweinydd y Cyngor ac Aelod Arweiniol Tai: “Rydym ni’n falch iawn o weithio ochr yn ochr â’n partneriaid hirsefydlog ar y contractau gwresogi newydd yma. Mae’n bwysig i ni ein bod ni’n ymrwymo i gadw cartrefi yn gynnes a lleihau costau ein deiliaid contract, yn enwedig yn ystod misoedd y gaeaf. Byddwn yn parhau i gefnogi Liberty drwy gydol y broses, gan edrych ymlaen at ragor o gydweithio efo nhw.”

Property services business Liberty has been awarded a place on Procurement for Housing’s Decarbonisation & Retrofit Framework until 2027.

The business has been successful in Lot 1a Solar PV, Lot 2 Air-Source Heat Pump and Lot 4 Insulation, which relates to the heating and compliance and repairs and maintenance divisions of the business.

The framework, worth an estimated £225m over four years, is aimed at supporting social housing providers and local authorities reduce dependency on fossil fuels and better insulate homes. With 40% of the carbon emissions from UK homes coming from heating and hot water systems, ditching fossil fuels for good must be a key part of all decarbonisation retrofit plans.

Liberty is committed to helping clients achieve their decarbonisation goals through a range of fabric improvements and greener heating solutions.

Ray Jones, Group Managing Director at Liberty, said: “We are really excited to have been awarded a place on Procurement for Housing’s decarbonisartion and retrofit framework. Decarbonisation is on the minds of many social housing providers across the UK and Liberty’s mission is to deliver smart retrofit programmes which will not only support crucial green targets but help tackle fuel poverty by better insulating leaky homes.”

Procurement for Housing said in a statement: “We are delighted to welcome Liberty onboard our Decarbonisation & Retrofit Framework, and we look forward to working together over the course of the framework with a shared commitment to sustainability and creating a lasting positive impact on the environment.”

To learn more about the framework, visit the Procurement for Housing website here.

After narrowly missing out on the top spot in the Team of the Year category, the judges awarded Liberty’s Damp and Disrepair Team ‘Highly Commended’ in recognition of how close the judging was.

Read on to learn more about how the team go above an beyond to deliver excellence for their clients.

 

Launched in 2021, the 32-strong Damp & Disrepair team is part of Liberty’s Repairs and Maintenance division based on Salford. Each month the team averages 290 surveys and 109 repairs.

Their works include:

  • Intrusive damp repairs, injected damp proof course, plaster removal and renewal,
  • Ventilation improvements,
  • Installation of thin internal wall insulation (TIWI).

The team’s expertise enables them to offer high-quality assurance and compliance and accurately identify homes where work isn’t needed, reducing unnecessary spending.

The team has a 93% success rate across all repairs with success defined as “no reoccurrence of damp and mould after a repair”.

 

Effective teamwork

Monitoring shows 50% of damp/mould cases are caused by condensation/ventilation. As a result, the team developed practical guidance for residents to reduce the risk of damp and mould.

Lee Ferendenus, Head of Maintenance at ForHousing said:

“Liberty’s service is of high quality and works are delivered in a timely manner, agreed schedules are adhered to and customer satisfaction is high.

“Close partnership working ensures the contract is run effectively making efficiencies year on year without impacting on the quality of service we or our tenants receive.”

 

 Positively impacting lives

Example: A tenant in Worsley had made multiple complaints about damp/mould before the team launched. On inspection, complex problems were found that had been misdiagnosed previously.

The survey revealed the underlying cause was elevated ground levels outside the property, alongside excess condensation from the magnesite floor slab.

A customised damp-proofing plan was developed:

  • The floor slab was coated in a bitumen-based damp-proof membrane.
  • A damp-proof membrane was applied to walls, creating a condensation barrier.
  • Plaster was removed to 1.5m from ground level.
  • A 3mm membrane was installed and a damp proof course injected into the mortar bed of the property’s brickwork, followed by re-plastering.

The work took four months, and there has been no reoccurrence of dampness.

The customer said: “I can’t thank the team enough for the work that was carried out. After many years of trying to find a solution to the damp problems, we have finally got there!”

 

Tenant engagement

Example: A tenant in Salford had heavy mould growth from a cold bridge.

The tenant was concerned about the disruption standard approaches to resolve the issue would bring. So the team innovated to minimise the impact.

They suggested TIWI which is effective at insulating and reducing condensation. It also acts as a vapour barrier and damp-proof membrane, preventing penetrating damp.

The resident agreed to be a pilot for this product, and it was a success.

They said; “Works were explained to me and carried out within four weeks. The change has been amazing. I don’t need to have my radiator on for as long and the mould hasn’t come back.”

Proudest achievement

The team’s proudest achievement is their work to rid 1,636 households in Greater Manchester of damp and mould.