Glory for top Lewes tenant Nikki

A LEWES woman has won the National Tenant of the Year Award.

Nikki Plummer was nominated for the accolade by Lewes District Council for her enormous contribution in promoting Credit Union in the Lewes District.

The award is made by the Association of Retained Council Housing, representing 56 members, which collectively owns half the council stock in England.

Nikki was chosen as the unanimous winner by a panel of three judges for her work in improving the lives of tenants on her own estate and also for her commitment to benefiting tenants across the whole of the Lewes District.

She will receive the award from the council’s Tenant Participation Manager, Ruth Tahsin, at our Tenants of Lewes District meeting on June 26.

Nikki is a mum to two young children and lives on the De Montfort Estate. The estate consists of high density housing, mainly flats, and there is a high proportion of single parents on low incomes.

She was instrumental in her voluntary role, campaigning for, setting up and helping to run a Credit Union/Debt Advice Surgery on the estate.

In September last year the Credit Union established a surgery at the community flat on the De Montfort. Nikki helped to advertise the scheme locally by delivering flyers, publishing articles in newsletters and spreading the word to her neighbours. She also then went on to train as a volunteer Credit Union advisor.

She is now concentrating on helping to expand the Credit Union service to other parts of the Lewes District. Her dedication has led to Nikki being offered a part-time paid position by the Credit Union.

As well as her role in promoting Credit Union, Nikki is Chair of the De Montfort Improvement Group. She has been actively involved in campaigning for numerous physical improvements to the area as well as fund-raising to lay on summer fun days, play schemes and youth activities. She is also actively involved in developing co-regulation in the Lewes District and is a member of the Tenant Scrutiny Panel.

Ron Maskell, Lead Councillor for Housing, said: “This type of initiative can only work if there is a team or an individual who really believes in what they are trying to achieve.

“Nikki, who has dedicated herself on behalf of the community in making this a successful venture, can be very proud at having received this award from an association of more than 200 councils.”

Ruth Tahsin said: “We feel Nikki’s achievement serves as an inspiration for other tenants, proving that getting involved can make a huge difference to the community and can also bring benefits on a personal level.”