The company now known as Calico was formed in April 1999, following a stock transfer of nearly 5,000 homes from Burnley Borough Council.
The name ‘Calico’ was chosen because of the heritage in East Lancashire of the production of textiles. This industry, much like ours today, was at the heart of regenerating the economic and social prospects of the region. Calico was a fabric produced by those prestigious mills. Today, The Calico Group is still proud of its heritage, and carries forward the tradition of bringing people together for the good of the community.
We were initially housed on Princess Way in a small building which would later become the new Burnley College. ‘Calico’ became our official name in July 2004, when we moved to our current premises on Centenary Court, Croft Street.
Over the years, we have spent millions on making improvements to areas across Burnley. We have been active in demolishing properties no longer fit for living in and investing in our housing stock.
Having previously brought our properties up to the Government’s Decent Homes Standard via a £15m investment programme, we have embarked on renovating our homes across South West Burnley. The programme has transformed the look of the area, and improved energy efficiency for residents. The programme ultimately improved the look of the Stoops, Hargher Clough, Griffin and Barclay Hills estates.
In 2007, Calico Enterprise was formed, creating a further 80 jobs delivering support, training and employment. As part of our Enterprise arm, we provide careers training and support for 16-24 year olds, creating new career opportunities across a range of fields. We provide a programme of training, development and involvement opportunities for our customers. Calico Enterprise also offers a range of essential, life changing support to service users across the North of England.
Opened in 2004, the Elizabeth Street Project provides safe accommodation for the homeless.
In 2008, we initiated a programme to provide disabled adaptations to our housing, improving the quality of life for disabled tenants and their families. By the end of the year, work had begun on a new £1.2m programme to improve communal sheltered schemes across Burnley and Padiham.
In 2011, SafeNet (formerly ELWRA) joined the Calico Group, delivering support across Lancashire for victims of domestic violence and abuse. SafeNet’s dedicated staff give emotional and practical support to help victims organise their life, putting a plan together to set achievable goals to regain their confidence.
In 2012, we formed Ring Stones, a construction and maintenance company aimed at securing long-term employment for local people.
Acorn Recovery Projects joined the Group in 2014, providing innovative drug and alcohol rehabilitation services across the North. Acorn’s staff – 80% of whom have been through recovery themselves – are committed to helping people overcome their problems and find life with meaning and purpose.
Now a Group, we deliver a range of essential services across the North, and we’re still based at our Centenary Court headquarters. These have also had a major refurbishment, transforming the northern end of Croft Street. We now have some 600 employees – including 54 apprentices – and are a Sunday Times Top 100 employer.