New build means sea change for Dulcie
Dulcie Wallis, 26, gave up a life on the seas to have her son, but soon found she wanted her own space. Now, thanks to Together Housing, she’s living in as brand new house.
A hostess on the Pride Of Hull, her life included regular round trips to Rotterdam and, regularly finding herself with a few hours to spare in the Dutch city, she really enjoyed the camaraderie and fun that came with the role.
“We used to go to a small pub or a local restaurant,” she remembers, “though we never had quite enough time to go as far as Amsterdam.”
However, after the birth of her son three years ago, Dulcie gave up full time work to concentrate on parenting. Taking a part-time cleaning job meant she could concentrate her time on the people she loved most and, she admits, living with her mum had many advantages: “My mum was great and I couldn’t have managed as a single parent without her.
“But, as my boy started to grow up, I knew it was time to find my own space, so I started to look around.”
With her son already making friends at nursery and needing her mum on hand to help with babysitting, Dulcie didn’t want to go far but, faced with the fees associated with moving, she wasn’t sure what to do.
“I hoped there would be a grant I could apply for, but sadly that no longer exists,” she tells, “but when I approached Together Housing they were able to talk with me and talk through my needs.
“Staying with a social housing provider has meant that I’m able to move and I feel lucky to be where I am. I’d looked at the different options, but I never dreamed I’d be able to move into a brand new house. I feel really lucky.”
Dulcie now lives on a brand new development in Hessle, built by Linden Homes in partnership with Together Housing Group. This means that she enjoys the advantages of a brand new property, while retaining the services Together Housing provide to all tenants, including online services and a 24 hour repairs line. Hilary Brady, Group head of Development at Together Housing Group, says mixed developments like this gives tenants and developers new opportunities: “Linden Homes were committed to building houses for affordable rent as well as for sale and Together Housing have the expertise to manage tenancies, so a partnership provided clear opportunities for us both.
“People are often excited to learn that new-build properties, built to the same quality specifications as those for sale, are available to rent in their price range. With us they can benefit from all the advantages of a new build as well as all the advantages of a social housing provider. It’s very much a win win situation.”
Having settled down at the house and with her son starting full time nursery later this year, Dulcie is now looking to the future and, while the view out to sea is attractive, she can no longer manage the trips to Rotterdam: “I’m hoping to increase my hours at work as soon as I can but in the future I would like to return to the ferry industry,” she reveals, “though I think work at the terminal would be my aim. It’s only 15 minutes down the road and, as I’ve recently passed my driving test, getting there will be no problem.
“The location is just great for everything and the future’s looking really bright,” she concludes.