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Event: Leaseholders and refurbishment: overcoming the legal, practical and policy challenges

Organised by Oxford University Faculty of Law and Future Climate, June 30th 2017
Venue: Church House Westminster, Deans Yard, Westminster, London, SW1P 3NZ

Presentations available to download below

The theme for this event was the challenge for social housing providers in working with private leaseholders to undertake refurbishment projects – particularly installing energy efficiency and renewable energy measures. The meeting discussed issues around the terms of leases which often make it hard for works to proceed, and focused on the proposals for leasehold reform that Future Climate and others have developed. The meeting also addressed the financial, communication and engagement issues that can make it difficult for leaseholders to pay for measures and lead to conflict between social landlords and leaseholders. Thirty-five people attended the workshop including representatives from government departments, first tier tribunal judges and managers from housing associations and local authorities. The Law Commissioner, Prof. Nicholas Hopkins provided the opening address. Chatham house rule applied, but see below for presentations, notes of the facilitated discussion are also available.
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AGENDA (click on headings to download available presentations)

  1. Introduction – Prof. Nicholas Hopkins, Law Commissioner
  2. The distinction between repairs and improvement – Amanda Gourlay, barrister, Tanfield Chambers
  3. Findings of research into Oxford tower blocks project – case study – Professor Susan Bright, Professor of Land Law, Oxford University
  4. Proposed legal reform – Mark Routley, Partner, TLT Solicitors
  5. Leaseholder engagement – Kate Newbolt (author of TPAS Leaseholder Engagement guide) – Cross Keys Homes
  6. Results of a survey into working with leaseholders on refurbishment projects – David Weatherall, Director, Future Climate
  7. Financing refurbishment – Andy Deacon, Director, Future Climate
  8. Facilitated discussion (notes available)
  9. Plenary discussion led by Mark Routley
  10. Closing Remarks – Prof. Susan Bright