Manchester City Council received Social Housing Decarbonisation Funding (SHDF) to reduce the carbon footprint of their properties, largely across the north of the city. This is a £50m investment to improve around 1,600 properties between 2023 and 2025.

The council commissioned us to develop a Guide to Communications and Engagement, which is acting as a blueprint for how to engage residents, stakeholders and staff involved in all the council’s housing retrofit activity – with the SHDF programme being the test-case.

The comms and engagement guide covers the different levels of involvement each stakeholder will have – from coordinating to informing, as well as the stages of engagement through the life-cycle of a retrofit programme. We have also produced several template documents that form a practical toolkit to accompany the guide.

One of the aspects of this commission that we are enjoying the most, is working alongside the council as they deliver the SHDF programme, by being an active member of the Engagement Steering Group. This close partnership means we can advise their ongoing engagement, and tailor and finesse the comms and engagement guide, so it works for the council’s future retrofit programmes. We included indicators to measure success, and we will also be working with the council to evaluate the impact of the comms and engagement activities, as the capital works are completed.