Data story: Social housing providers in the Cambridge sub-region


The Census tells us that more than 322,000 households were living in the Cambridge housing sub-region in 2011. Of these approximately:

• 210,000 were owner-occupiers and 3,700 were shared owners

• 48,000 lived in social housing rented either from the council or another social housing provider

• 52,700 lived in privately rented housing via a letting agent or landlord, or “other” and 5,355 households lived rent free.

This open data directory provides information on the 39,100 rented and shared ownership homes owned or managed by Private Registered Providers. In our area, an additional 12,600 homes are owned and managed by Cambridge City Homes and South Cambridgeshire District Council but not included in this directory.

What is a Private Registered Provider?

Private registered providers of social housing in England are registered with, and regulated by, the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA). The term Private Registered Provider excludes local authority landlords.

Private registered providers included Housing Associations, Registered Social Landlords, charitable almshouses and trusts and private companies who are registered with the HCA. For ease, in this note we simply use the term “providers” instead of Private Registered Provider or PRPs.

Providers own and manage social housing following their organisation’s individual vision and business plan – usually governed by a board and always regulated by the Homes and Communities Agency. They might own a mixture of

• general needs, sheltered and supported housing.

• homes at social and affordable rents, and homes to buy through shared ownership and shared equity schemes.

• homes to rent at “less than market” rents, but higher than social or affordable rents.

Why is this of interest?

Providers own and manage a large number of homes across the Cambridge housing sub-region. For more about the benefits providers bring to our area, please see our Delivering Localism report (links at bottom of page). Key highlights include providers contribution to:

• Building communities

• Giving young people a good start in life and helping younger children

• Promoting health and well-being.

• Putting tenants in the driving seat.

• Supporting older and vulnerable residents.

• Providing financial advice and support.

• Helping tenants into work.

• Providing homes and communities in rural areas.

It’s a good time to publish local information on the range and number of providers active across the sub-region, as

• There is a new contract for the older people’s programme with Uniting Care Partnership which will need to link with housing services and housing providers across Cambridgeshire.

• The Care Act 2014 and the Transforming Lives agenda mean a range of partners including housing, health and social care agencies need to work together to support wellbeing and social care in a different way in future, with a strong emphasis on prevention of harm.

• Health commissioners look for information about social housing and partnerships they can develop to advise and assist patients who are social tenant, appropriately, especially within Local Commissioning Groups.

• In general, partnership working and understanding the contribution of partners becomes vital if we intend to improve residents’ lives by working together more closely.

This directory goes some way to helping partners “find” each other in a local area and get a better understanding of each partner’s values and way of working.

Key points

CIOD aims to make data as useful and accessible as possible to a wide range of partners. Presenting the HCA spreadsheet in “open data” format just for the seven districts in our sub-regional group helps customers and partners see:

• The range of organisations owning and managing affordable housing across our sub-region

• What types of housing each provider owns and manages

• Whether providers own and manage general rented housing, supported housing, housing for older people and / or low cost home ownership

• Quick access to each provider’s website to help users find further information on each provider

Where does data come from?

Each year, private registered providers provide a mass of information to the regulator, the Homes and Communities Agency. The forms have to be completed in the spring, are checked and processed – then in the autumn each year (usually September) the agency publishes the results for all providers across England.

What does the data show?

There are 71 providers active across the seven districts of our housing sub-region. Many own and manage homes in more than one district. The number of providers owning or managing homes in each district are:

• Cambridge: 34

• East Cambridgeshire: 26

• Fenland: 29

• Huntingdonshire: 34

• South Cambridgeshire: 29

• Forest Heath: 21

• St Edmundsbury: 25

Use and impact

Although this open data is based on Homes and Communities Agency national data, this information makes the data open, accessible and discoverable and enables partners to easily see which providers are present and active in their area, district and to easily find their website.


• The open data, giving name of provider, districts they own/manage housing in, whether the homes are (a) general needs (b) sheltered (c) supported (d) Low Cost Home Ownership homes, and the number of districts where that provider owns/manages housing in our sub-region.…

• HCA source data

• Cambridgeshire Insight | Housing

• Cambridgeshire Insight | SHMA chapter 4, Dwelling profile 2013, at

• Cambridgeshire Insight | SHMA chapter 7, Social housing for rent 2013, at

• Delivering Localism report at

• Further detail on Cambridgeshire’s older persons procurement at…

• Further detail on Transforming Lives and the Care Act 2014 at…

• Information on Cambridgeshire’s Local Commissioning Groups at…

For further information, please contact:

Sue Beecroft, sub-regional housing strategy co-ordinator

Tel: 07715 200 730

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @CambsHsgSubReg