Girton Town Charity


GTC team is here to help

5 Feb 2024

In Girton Town Charity’s new office at Dovehouse Court, there’s a team of people to offer assistance and advice to almshouse residents and villagers requiring advice on schemes and grants. Here we meet the three and outline some of the ways they could help you.

Office Manager Rachel Allchorne and Office Administrator Carol Robinson share the task of supporting GTC Trustees with day-to-day administration, as well as helping almshouse residents to ensure the Charity’s 28 properties are kept in good repair by liaising with the Maintenance Supervisor in their team.

First port of call
Rachel says: “In addition to helping our residents, we are also the first port of call for enquiries about our Schemes and Grants which range from financial help with educational materials through to short-term care for someone returning home from hospital. These requests can come via email, telephone or in-person and if the request falls outside GTC’s remit, we often signpost residents to external agencies and advice organisations.

“We are finding that with an ageing population, most requests come from older residents seeking additional care and assistance to stay in their own homes. We also have families affected by the cost-of-living crisis asking for financial support to help their individual situation.”

In-person help
Carol continues: “With the Trustees being volunteers, we maintain an open-door policy within the office Monday to Friday to enable residents to access information and support. It’s often helpful to have face-to-face conversations to deal with their queries and problems.

“As with any role, there are challenges and often we have to juggle the many priorities and urgent tasks against an evergrowing to-do list, but working closely with the Trustees and having an interface with Village residents makes the job both enjoyable and highly rewarding.”

Managing maintenance
The third member of the team at Dovehouse Court is Maintenance Supervisor Fred Stevens who is responsible for managing both pre-planned and reactive maintenance for the Charity’s 28 almshouses, office and grounds. This entails liaising with contractors and residents to ensure all work is completed to a good standard, and keeping track of jobs by using the Charity’s Maintenance software.

Fred says: “Every day is different but generally I start by checking to see if there have been any new maintenance issues that have come in overnight. If so, I investigate and either carry out the repair myself or arrange for relevant contractors to be booked in. I also have a list of scheduled tasks that need attention.

“My role mainly benefits the residents of GTC almshouses but I also have a wider remit in the Village, looking after a number of wooden benches in different locations, as well as the Church Lane Bus Shelter and the Goose Sculpture Railings to ensure everything is in good order.

“I am really enjoying my role which is all about fixing things for people. Being able to achieve that is very satisfying and I often get residents thanking me for my efforts.”