Simon Mellor joins from Welsh housing association Hafod

Rochdale Boroughwide Housing (RBH) has announced its appointment of Simon Mellor as its permanent director of finance and developments to replace the recently retired John McGrail.

When McGrail stepped down last month after a year and a half in post he was replaced by Jeremy Vickers on an interim basis.

Awaab Ishak -3

Mellor joins the housing association as it seeks to recover its reputation following the death of toddler Awaab Ishak in one of its properties

Mellor will take over from Vickers in March this year. He will join RBH from Cardiff-based housing association Hafod, where he was corporate director of finance, investments and development since April 2021.

Prior to this, he worked for retirement living provider Housing 21 as interim chief financial officer for five months, and head of commercial finance and treasury before that.

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He also spent more than five years at Sanctuary Group as treasury reporting manager and then head of financial reporting.

RBH received a non-compliant G3 grading for governance standards from the Regulator of Social Housing, after a coroner’s report found that two-year-old Awaab Ishak had died as a result of exposure to mould in one of its homes. 

The housing association remains compliant with the regulator’s financial viability standard, for which it holds a V2 grading.

Mellor said: “I am delighted to be joining RBH. During the recruitment process, I was impressed by the Executive and Board’s commitment to deliver the recovery plan and the passion to get the very best outcomes for RBH’s customers and communities. I am excited to play my part in the newly formed Executive Team amongst dedicated and highly customer-focused leaders.”

Amanda Newton, chief executive at RBH, said that Mellor’s knowledge and experience “will be critical in taking us into the next phase of our recovery journey and towards a positive future for our customers”.