Fists in Solidarity

Thank you for considering joining the Board of St Luke’s. Our website includes a large amount of information that board members need, but we suggest that you should start with the induction material highlighted in this introductory note, which guides you through some of the more important documents and introduces you to the world of social housing if you come from a different background.       


This introduction is divided into four parts with links to the appropriate documents taken from the Society’s website.


Part 1: The History of St Luke’s and its Mission


Part 2: Organisation Structure and Recent Events


Part 3: Government Policies for Social Housing


Part 4: Key Recent Documents


Part 1: The History of St Luke’s and its Mission

A short history of St Luke’s can be found here.

Perhaps the key document for new (and existing) board members is the Governance Policy Manual which includes information on:    

  1. Principles on which our governance policies are based

  2. Mission, vision and values

  3. Structure of the organisation and the governing body

  4. Legislation

  5. Standards of behaviour

This document can be found  here


Part 2: Organisation Structure and Recent Events 


The organisation chart for the society is available here.


           The Board  is chaired Malcolm Fearn and members come from a wide range of backgrounds, bringing a range of different skills.

The two key working committees of the Society are the Finance (Chair: Richard Eve) and Strategy and Governance (Chair: Vacant) Committees, both of which report to the Board.

The General Manager of the Society is Jo Dancer.  Jo is responsible to the Board for the operational management of McMaster House.  Jo oversees compliance, governance, financial and asset management of the association.  The General Manager is also responsible for managing the Wellbeing Officer, Maintenance Staff and Contractors.  Prior to joining St Luke's, Jo worked in Social Housing for over 15 years, for both a Housing Association and Local Authority.  Jo has an extensive background in Social Housing and Tenancy Management, specialising in complex safeguarding, tenancy enforcement requiring legal intervention and anti-social behaviour.  Jo has a comprehensive understanding of support and statutory agencies in Oxfordshire. 

Bev Barrett was appointed as the schemes Wellbeing Officer, supporting residents with tenancy and support issues.  Bev has a background in Social Housing specialising in 55+ Accommodation and overseeing Extra Care.  Bev is a qualified Social Worker and has a wealth of experience in the social care and support sector and community involvement.  Bev has extensive knowledge and experience of support agencies in Oxfordshire and the statutory agencies around safeguarding and  elderly care.


We have two onsite Caretakers who look after the general maintenance at the scheme and advise on the need to bring in specialist contractors.  Both have extensive knowledge and experience across a breadth of different areas.  With this, they bring unique skills and problem solving.


McMaster House currently consists of 38 purpose built flats in Headington, Oxford generally let to those over the age of 55. All the flats are self-contained and let at an affordable rent.  We are proud to have increased our stock in 2020 from 36 to 38 by  the construction of three new flats and the remodelling of two studio flats into a one-bedroomed flat. 


Part 3: Government Policies for Social Housing


The National Housing Federation has published a useful guide to the regulation of housing associations entitled Leadership and Control: A Governance Manual for Board Members. This is a helpful reference document based on the NHF Code of Governance and is is supplied to all new Board Members.

However, if you do not come from a social housing background you might find it helpful to appreciate a little of the historical development of current government policies related to affordable housing. Two chapters from Understanding Affordability: The Economics of Housing Markets by Geoff Meen and Christine Whitehead are available here.


Part 4: Key Recent Documents  

The members section of the Society’s website is currently under review and will be updated to provide residents, visitors, staff and Board Members with information about St Luke's Housing Society Limited.

Information for Prospective Board Members