North Kesteven District Council’s Corporate Director Phil Roberts has been singled out as a progressive leader within local government housing development.
Industry magazine Inside Housing includes him within their ‘Power List of the Heavy Hitters driving the Delivery of New Homes’ – identifying him as one of eight ‘Accelerators’, described as ‘individuals moving at a pace’.
While it was an honour to be recognised alongside such innovative and influential peers, he said the credit should rest with the wider team of officers and Members at North Kesteven which had pioneered and progressed such a consistently strong programme of delivery.
First as Head of Housing and now as Corporate Director at North Kesteven, Phil oversaw the resumption and escalation of an in-house building programme, with NKDC being one of the first out of the ground in 2009.
Under Phil’s leadership, the Council has:
- built more than 200 new homes across 24 communities at a cost of around £20m;
- innovated through straw bale and passivhaus technologies;
- embraced wide-ranging solutions to increase thermal efficiency;
- and broadened its mechanisms for access to better, low-cost, warm and comfortable homes for both affordable and private rent.
Beyond this, the Council has been acknowledged as the best for replacing houses lost from its stock through Right to Buy, repeatedly high-performing at low-cost, responsive to tenant needs and a leader in its work to bring empty homes back into use and improve conditions within the private rented sector.
Judges praised North Kesteven as a ‘hugely innovative council really showing how it can be done as a smaller authority’.
They recognised that delivering 200 homes over eight years was a ‘huge number for a rural council in a period pervaded by political and economic barriers to local authority development’.
North Kesteven Chief Executive Ian Fytche said: “I am delighted that Phil has been deservedly recognised as an ‘accelerator’ on what Inside Housing calls its ‘power list of heavy hitters driving the delivery of new homes’.
“Phil would be the first to say that this represents recognition for North Kesteven District Council and everyone involved in our housing and project teams delivering schemes across the District, building on recent national awards for the Council’s development programme.
This recognition could apply equally to many people in the NKDC team, recognising the strength of the member and officer team at NK.
“Nevertheless, it is great to see national recognition for the vision, drive and leadership that Phil has brought to our housing priorities.”
Phil is one of only 41 people hand-picked by a judging panel to be included within the Who’s Who for 2017, highlighting council achievements and championing those who ensure more people have a quality home to live in.
Nominations were assessed by an expert panel who were looking for vision, innovation, ambition, success, influence and most importantly, leadership that overcomes challenges, inspires and achieves.