Claire Higgins

Claire Higgins 2017

Claire was born and raised in Stockport.  After graduating from Southampton University, she moved to Hackney in London. Claire secured her first job as a Development Officer for Newlon Housing Trust, working on a number of new build and rehabilitation projects, as well as managing special needs accommodation. Claire remained with Newlon for three years, finishing as General Manager of the company's non-charitable subsidiary which specialised in low-cost home ownership projects and the management of the association's commercial property portfolio.

In 1988 she joined Circle 33 Housing Trust in London as Managing Director of their home ownership arm, looking after commercial and non-charitable activity such as low-cost home ownership projects, shared ownership and outright sales, home improvement agencies and mortgage rescue schemes (a big area of business during the last recession).

Before joining Cross Keys Homes in September 2004, Claire spent seven years as Executive Regional Director for Housing 21, a national housing and care provider for older people. Here, she was responsible for all housing and care-related operations in a region that encompassed 33 counties across central England. As well as her operational responsibilities, Claire also had national responsibility for the association's leasehold portfolio, its asset management strategy and implementation, all property-related services and stock re-investment – making sure Housing 21's housing was fit for purpose into the 21st century and beyond.

Claire took over as Chief Executive of Cross Keys Homes in November 2014.

Claire sits on the Board of PlaceShapers and is also a member of Build East. Locally, Claire is involved with a number of partner organisations. She is Co Chair of the Families safeguarding commissioning and delivery board for the city and Chair of Safer Peterborough Partnership, the city’s multi agency crime and disorder reduction partnership.

Claire's great passion for the care sector has seen the successful launch of Cross Keys Care, which provides care for older people in the community and in our extra care schemes, Kingfisher Court and Lapwing Apartments.

Claire chairs Evera, a newly formed LLP working with Hyde, Longhurst and Flagship housing associations who aim to start the building of 2,500 new homes in the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough combined authority area by 2023.

Alongside her day job, Claire is very proud to be the vice chair of City College Peterborough and the chair of Peterborough Keys Academy Trust, a newly formed multi academy trust comprising a group of five schools across the city delivering quality teaching and learning to around 3,500 young people.

 Claire is also a qualified mentor, which is another aspect of her work that she also finds extremely rewarding.