Onward appoints director of strategy

Sarah Townsend

The North West housing association has hired former Lexington Communications director Rob Loughenbury to the post as it seeks to strengthen its activities.

Loughenbury, a former campaign manager for the Conservative Party, joined Onward Homes this week.

As director of strategy, he will support Onward Homes as it plans and delivers a programme to help the region ‘build back better’ in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, both as a social landlord and a housebuilder working across Liverpool, Manchester, Cheshire and elsewhere.

Prior to joining Onward, Loughenbury spent seven years at communications agency Lexington, where he specialised in advising clients on planning applications, land allocations and national housing policy.

His clients at Lexington included national and regional house builders, the Homes for the North coalition of housing associations and the Housing the Powerhouse campaign group. He previously completed a PhD on community relations in Northern towns.

Between 2011 and 2015, he worked for the Conservative Party as a field campaign manager, and later stood for parliament in a marginal seat.

Loughenbury said: “Onward is ideally placed to make a defining contribution to our regional recovery, as a housing association playing an active civic role and as a home builder of scale and quality.

“My focus will be on developing our ability to work with current and new partners, to support the full range of customer housing aspirations and make a positive difference in the communities we serve.”

Bronwen Rapley, chief executive of Onwar, added: “[Rob’s] perspective, experience and insight will help us to develop our strategy and strengthen our position as a housing association and builder of new homes in the North West.”



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Anyone else;s eyebrows raise at this? A comms spin person being appointed to lead strategy for a social housing company??

I thought they had better judgment than that.

By MancLad

Welcome aboard Rob. Look forward to working with you

By Chris M

Tory spin doctor working in social housing now there’s a culture clash.

By Anonymous