Homes for Wells is a Charitable Community Benefit Society. We were formed back in 2006 by a group of local people who were concerned about the housing problem in Wells.
Our shareholders are people with a local connection who are committed to our aims. Shareholders do not receive any profit.
Our directors are all volunteers. The board of directors run the organisation with the intent of making a small surplus each year which is reinvested in more property and making sure we have some cash in the bank for a rainy day.
I am the General Manager at Homes for Wells. I moved to Wells in 1998 with my daughter, Bethany, and my husband Mark.
Although I no longer live in Wells, I have a great passion for affordable housing for local people. I have a wealth of experience dealing with property and tenant management.
I like to get involved in the local community and have volunteered at many events over the years.
I have been involved with Homes for Wells for the past four years, having served on the Board before being employed as its General Manager.
I hope to give some continuity to the Board, tenants, supporters and people on the waiting list for information and updates in all things Homes for Wells.
I am the Fundraiser and Finance Administrator for Homes for Wells. My background is in banking and, one way and another, I have been involved with fundraising for the last 35 years.
I have lived and worked in Wells for the last 8 years. I am a volunteer Flood Warden, member of the Town Council, and a director of the Quay magazine.
As a tenant in private rental accommodation, I know how hard it can be to find somewhere affordable to live. Being part of the Homes for Wells team enables me to help others find a secure, affordable home in their own community.
I first came to Wells in 2018 to view a house for my retirement – my dream was to be able to walk my dog on the beach every day. It was love at first sight – first with the harbour, then with the beach and finally with the house. When I bought my home what I did not know was that I had just contributed to a problem for Wells. Yet another lovely home snapped up with money earned in London at a price that would be unaffordable to most who worked in Wells.
I joined the board of Homes for Wells because I wanted to contribute to this lovely community and to be part of the solution to the affordable housing shortage rather than part of the problem. I am passionate about helping Wells to thrive – to be a vibrant year-round town as well as a seasonal holiday resort. For this to happen local people must be able to live here.
Before retirement I was a solicitor and a founding partner of a law firm in London which I managed for over 30 years growing to over 200 people. My passion was creating a great place to work. I now work freelance coaching law firm leaders.
I am a qualified accountant with over thirty years experience of working in finance. I have been the Finance Director of various companies including those involved in real estate management and development. For the last four years I have been the Treasurer of Homes for Wells and it has been great to be involved as the number of properties managed continues to grow in a financially sustainable manner.
I was introduced to Wells by my wife who has local family connections. I have since grown to appreciate the unique characteristics of the town as well as the beauty of the surrounding area - as do my dogs! I believe that Homes for Wells makes an important contribution to the sustainability of what we all love about the town, and it is very enjoyable to work with such a committed team in making that happen.
I have lived in Wells for the last 13 years but have a much longer association with the town as both my grandmother and my father were from Wells next the Sea. I spend some time living in Norfolk in the 1970s.
Following the birth of my two daughters, in 1988 I founded my own Design, Build & Project Management Consultancy based in north London. My husband, Christopher and I decided to return to live full time in Norfolk in 2008 when I started working for the Holkham Estate as Projects Manager.
In 2014 Christopher and I refurbished the building formerly known as The Corner House in Wells and established “Bang In Wells” - a café and guest accommodation business. Having employed several local people at Bang In Wells, I was already very aware of the issues surrounding the severe lack of affordable homes for local people which is why I joined the board of Homes For Wells hoping that my skills in the property sector would be of benefit to the organisation in acquiring more affordable accommodation for local people to enable them to continue to live, work and raise their families in this wonderful community.
I continue to work as a freelance Design, Build and Management Consultant in the property sector.
I am very lucky to have been born and brought up in Wells. I studied business management, retail and accountancy at The College of West Anglia. I now have two young children and a successful business within the town and many of my family still live here.
Myself and my partner became Tenants of Homes for Wells after our first child was born. After a short time I joined Homes for Wells' Board as the tenant representative in 2016. In 2018 we were lucky enough to be able to purchase our own family home in Wells, I decided to remain a board member as I feel strongly about helping to support the thriving community of Wells and helping local people by providing affordable and secure homes for them to live in.
I was born in Weasenham St. Peters near Swaffham then moved to Hindringham when I was 2 years old. I went to Alderman Peel in 2000 until 2005. I was carnival attendant in 2002 and Carnival Queen in 2017.
I moved to wells in 2014 and was an active active member of the RNLI lifeboat guild and Bell ringer. Homes for Wells allocated me a home in The Old School. I have five children – the older ones all at local schools. I am currently on maternity leave from my job at the Stiffkey Red Lion.
I was born in Wells and attended both the primary and high school. I went to study animal behaviour which has taken me around the world to volunteer for different organisations working with some amazing types of animals.
Wells has always been and will always be my home and in 2011 I came back to Wells to work in Nelsons Cafe to help out my mum. I still work there today, and we are now business partners.
I could see that Wells was becoming more popular with holiday homes and second homes so decided to try and save for my own house with my partner Jo. We secured a property in Northfield Crescent - the same road I grew up on! We’ve lived here happily since 2013 with our two children. A recent valuation of our property shows it’s almost doubled in 8 years meaning if we tried to buy the same property today, we wouldn’t be able to afford to. This is the case for many locals making it almost impossible for them to get on the property ladder. The renting market is just as bad, and we are seeing more young locals moving away from the town. As a business owner this is very worrying as trying to find staff was never easy and now it’s even harder. This is why I joined Homes for Wells, to help more locals to stay local.
Wells is my home town. I grew up loving the sea and open space here. After school, I left for London and was employed as a press and events officer at Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital and later for Crisis, the national charity for homeless people. While there, I worked with Big Issue vendors and major donors to commemorate 30 years of street homelessness with an event at the Globe Theatre. I came back to North Norfolk to raise my family and created a community learning hub at Wells High School. From family learning events to youth work, one thing I noticed was how many young people had left Wells because of the lack of affordable housing and year-round work. Hearing how Sam Peel, a pioneering social reformer, created the first council housing in Wells, inspired me to do something about it too. With £10, lots of goodwill and hard work Homes for Wells was launched. After initiating the start-up, administration and first home for HfW, I stepped back to become a Board then co-opted member of HfW while training as a youth counsellor. Seeing more than 20 families now in secure homes is a credit to the many people who have shaped and supported its growth over the last 15 years. While there is so much more to do, sometimes taking a risk pays off.
I have been privileged to serve on the board of Homes for Wells since 2017 and was Chair for four years. I am proud that we added ten new homes to our portfolio due to generous donations and grants while I was chair. In 2021 we strengthened our team in the office appointing Jane Berwick as our first General Manager moving Homes for Wells into a new phase.
The great challenge ahead of us still is the continuing, relentless, conversion of homes into holiday lets. We can keep Wells a thriving community only if more homes are available at an affordable rent. This will allow local families to stay working in local businesses, care and other services, and in the schools, while also supporting other family members