The nature of our business brings Bellway close to a range of different stakeholder groups. In managing our activities we aim to be responsive to the diverse views and requirements expressed by these groups and we recognise that effective engagement with our stakeholders is an important element of our CR programme. Using established communication channels such as public consultation exercises and our website, we are able to work closely with local communities to better balance their needs with the demands of our business.
Our highly trained and dedicated team of sales advisors engage and communicate with customers from the first meeting, through the home reservation stage and on to the final legal completion and beyond. They are always available to help ensure that the whole home buying process runs as smoothly as possible.
Following legal completion, our Customer Charter sets out the process of engagement with our customers to ensure that the after-sales experience continues to be a positive one. Our dedicated customer care team at each division is supported by a Group Head of Customer Care and our Customer Experience Committee.
We ensure that our colleagues are well informed and have the knowledge they need to operate successfully in the best interests of Bellway, our customers and stakeholders. Our employees receive regular communications in relation to changes to policies, procedures, services and advice. With a dedicated human resources team operating during the year, our focus has been on the attraction, development and retention of talent across the business. Senior management regularly attend and present to the board and directors visit the divisions which all help inform the board on matters that are important to our employees.
Our executive management team meets with shareholders at least twice a year to discuss interim and full-year financial results, answer questions and discuss future actions. The board receives reports from our broker and PR advisors following our interim and full-year results' presentations that provide feedback from investors and analysts.
We encourage all shareholders to attend our AGM and we seek the views of shareholder representative bodies where necessary especially on the areas of director remuneration and board succession. We also respond to ad hoc queries from shareholders wherever possible.
We regularly hold meetings and communicate with our suppliers, sub-contractors and consultants, passing on relevant information to each division as appropriate. Where there is new product information, this is communicated in a timely manner to each division.
The Head of Procurement develops our relationships with, and management of, our supply chain and we strive to maintain long-term working relationships with our suppliers, sub-contractors and consultants to further strengthen the long-term interests of our business. This long-term relationship with sub-contractors helps to reduce health and safety risks and to ensure the availability and quality of materials and labour.
Prior to the submission of a planning application we undertake rigorous consultation with the local communities. This involves informing communities about the proposed development, attending public meetings and exhibitions, and listening to and acting on feedback. This process allows us to ensure the views of the local community and neighbouring landowners are taken into account as far as is reasonable and practicable. We also operate the Considerate Constructors Scheme on developments where appropriate.
We maintain national and regional representation with Homes England, working closely on their public land and housing investment agendas. We are a significant partner in the government’s Help to Buy programme and, through our presence on national forums, contribute to the efficient delivery of this major policy initiative.
We are an active participant in the Homes and Community Agency’s Delivery Partner Panel (‘DPP3’). We have national coverage through representation in all five regional frameworks and are also a member of the GLA’s London Development Panel (2).
Regional and local government policy has a significant influence on the operation of our business and we seek to work collaboratively with local authorities and key statutory bodies, ensuring that developments are brought forward efficiently and with regard to local needs. In London we work closely with the Greater London Authority and London boroughs, and engage at a senior level with both the Welsh Assembly and Scottish Parliament, working closely on their respective Help to Buy programmes.
Bellway also engages at a strategic level with senior officials within the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG), the treasury and the cabinet office to address the pressing issues of accelerating housing delivery, widening home ownership opportunity and the regeneration of communities.
Effective partnership with a range of public bodies and agencies is central to the success of Bellway’s business. We value the opportunities which partnerships bring and the benefits these relationships deliver to the communities we build in.
We have long established relationships with housing association (HA) partners across the country ranging from large national and regional landlords to small rural providers. Together we work to build communities and improve the affordability of housing for local people.
Our engagement with HAs ranges from joint ventures and strategic partnerships to the ongoing delivery of affordable housing on most of our developments. These relationships are maintained across the Group through regular meetings at national, regional and local levels.
We actively seek land for development and are always interested in hearing from land owners and agents who have land to sell. Our local teams of specialist land buyers work directly with members of the public, commercial vendors and the public sector alike to realise land opportunities. They are able to consider any site, whether greenfield or brownfield and regardless of current planning status and have direct access to substantial funds, allowing for highly competitive offers to be arrived at quickly. Through our local regional offices we have extensive knowledge of local planning policies and frameworks and have proven expertise in guiding challenging sites through the planning system. In addition to acquiring land outright we are also able to consider joint venture and partnership agreements.