A short interview with Andy Winter, CEO Brighton Housing Trust
The Chief Executive of Brighton Housing Trust, Mr Andy Winter agreed to see me. I
have always wanted to scoop him for the Blog pages we have (prsbhtblog) been
We met in his office at BHT .I take a seat at the big conference table which takes up
most of his office. He sits by the window(‘the light is better for photos’ he said
later).First we discuss Twitter and its advantages.
I have no shorthand or Dictaphone, however he speaks slowly so that I can take down
everything he says.
I am keen to talk about the changes to Peer to Peer, but Andy prefers to talk about the
acquisition.of the Whitehawk Inn. This is one of the big changes at BHT, the other
being loss of Peer2Peer.
I tell Andy that a group of people in Peer to Peer are putting a bid to the council to
keep P2P open.
He says:’ I was devastated when I heard the funding for P2P is to finish at the end of
June’ . He is clearly upset over this; and continues: ‘Over the years Peer to Peer has
provided opportunities for countless people to offer and receive support that might
otherwise not be available-Peer mentoring and support provide an effective and cost
effective way of providing preventative services, that mean people don’t need much
more costly treatment from the City Council and NHS. The decision to de-
commission the service, is short sighted.
We are exploring how we can continue to provide peer support across BHT(the
whole of our support services are based on the P2P model).
In the financial environment, we are living in, when central and local government are
cutting public expenditure some very valuable and much loved services will be lost.
“I’m very pleased about the merger. First reason I’m pleased is that Whitehawk Inn is an amazing organisation. It works with people in communities often forgotten about. The quality of their advice, information and guidance cannot be overstated. I was incredibly impressed by their ethos and the attitude of their staff.
When we decided to join forces I thought that Whitehawk Inn as a part of Brighton Housing Trust would strengthen BHT’s reputation and broaden the services we can offer.
We’ve spent six months looking at each other and finding out how each of us operates dealing with legal, commercial and financial aspects of the merger.
Most importantly we concluded that there was a good fit, that that Whitehawk Inns’ that their ethos and ambitions are consistent with ours.”