We Are


Recent Projects and Clients


Strategy, Planning and Performance

Supporting the work of North Star CR in an associate capacity. Support housing association clients across Scotland to review organisational structure, develop good governance and ​complete regulatory assurance self-assessment frameworks, review strategy and policies, and to complete option appraisals for service area reviews.


Working as a sub-contractor with North Star Consulting and Research to conduct a Rent Review and Affordability Assessment; including preparation of community profile, peer group comparability and focus group consultation. 


Working as lead contractor to review a number of governance and associated policies including Standing Orders, Financial Regulations, Grants for Community Groups, Complaints and Procurement; to support in the delivery of internal audit recommendations.

An extended commission over several months to review and develop four suites of operational policies.  These have included reviews on a broad range of issues, including: Scottish Secure Tenancy and shared ownership issues; estate management and service charges; tenancy management, repairs and recharging policies and empty property management.  We have also researched and developed new policies for the Association on responding to Domestic Abuse; and shared ownership re-sales, taking into account on local market conditions, association objectives, and good practice.


Commissioned by the project's parent charity Partnerships for Wellbeing. Evaluating a programme of successful volunteer led health walks provided across all areas of the Highlands following a period of rapid expansion and high demand: to assess the achievements of the 14-year project and consider it's future direction; to assess efficiency of use of existing  resources; provide options for sustainable and flexible operating structures; and to scan future grant and income generating opportunities.

Commissioned by the Health & Social Care improvement Hub (iHub) with the Adapting for Change team.  Collating lessons and good practice examples  for wider sharing and learning from demonstration projects testing various strands of improvement.  These follow the recommendations of the Scottish Government working group report on housing adaptations., of which Helen Barton was previously a member. Working with the 5 demonstration sites across Scotland, in the Borders, Aberdeen, Lochaber, Falkirk and Fife.  The practice notes are published on Scotland's Housing Network site.

Working as a sub-contractor to support OIC to research and develop a comprehensive guidance document for a landlord with a small portfolio of private sector tenancies; Guiding the organisation to better understand and manage legal and regulatory responsibilities for tenancy and property management in line with good practice and current legislation.​

Community Engagement

  • Community Action Plans and Asset Mapping

Leading the development of a Community Action Plan approach for a rural Highland community council; including planning for community asset mapping, engaging stakeholder groups, and community consultation. 

 Working with North Star Consulting and Research, to develop a community profile, map community assets; and to facilitate consultation with local residents and stakeholder organisations. Research and consultation reports informed the development of a Community Action Plan for a community based housing association in Glasgow Southside.


Supporting a recently formed SCIO with community engagement prior to acquisition of assets for community use; including producing a community update, facilitating a community ballot and provision of independent advice

Lead consultant in partnership with Lockhart Consulting.  Commissioned by Shetland Islands Council on behalf of the Waas Community Development Group and the Northmavine Community Development Company to study how housing provision can help to sustain communities in remote rural areas of the Shetland mainland.  The project includes identification of need and demand at small area level, including barriers to access, the impact on local employment and community sustainability. Community consultation will supplement other existing data to inform the viability of future tenure options projects on identified sites.


Working with the community council to develop a website and social media presence. Development of an initial project plan to support the community-led management and maintenance of amenity ground and picnic area. Scoping initial proposals and budget requirements, and submitting successful applications for small grants to fund the project start-up phase

  • HISEZ: Housing for Older People research

Assisting HISEZ to carry out evaluation of options for housing to meet the needs of older people in a small, remote community: Providing an overview of current and emerging best practice models, and analysis of existing data and research on housing and community needs for the community needs to identify appropriate options

  • RASASH : Information and Resource Pack for Supporter Fundraising

Developing a fun and user friendly resource pack to help supporters of RASASH (Rape and Sexual Abuse Service, Highland) to plan effective fundraising activities to raise funds for the charity; that also promote strong messages and encourage community action to challenge attitudes, stop sexual violence happening, and provide support to victims.

Over a series of policy commissions Helen has delivered consistently high quality work for us over a wide and challenging set of operational policies.  Her extensive and in depth knowledge of all things housing, her understanding of our unique position and her friendly approachable manner have taken the pain out of what would have been a very protracted process for us to manage without her help.

Blair Allen

Chief Executive, Lochaber Housing Assoication

We found Helen a pleasure to work with; she sought to fully understand our requirements and was easy to communicate with.  We'd happily work with her again.

Moira Paton

Manager, Rape and Sexual Abuse Service Highland

"We are hugely grateful to Helen for her care in helping us put together a summary of the SEAchange project in newsletter format, delivered to every home in the area. Helen organised a community ballot, which gave us and everyone else confidence that it was all being done independently, professionally, and as it should be. Throughout her work with us she has always kept in touch and replied speedily – and with endless patience – to our many questions and requests. We have much appreciated all her work, and the way she has combined efficiency with a warmhearted approach".



As my mentor , Helen has coached me with insight, encouragement and intuition. She has helped me to gain the confidence to explore the nascent plans that I had not fully allowed myself to develop She has worked with me to create a space in which honest questions could be asked - sometimes leading to answers that have surprised even myself. Highly recommended for anyone needing to chart a course to their next career destination

Housing Officer

CiH Scotland Member

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Leadership, Training & Development

Supporting the Trustees and staff of a small charity that promotes health and wellbeing services through a period of change​: supporting staff to carry out their duties; improving channels of communication; assisting the Board to advance and funding applications and report to existing funders; and progressing recruitment of a permanent manager.

Providing practitioner focussed insights as Plenary Session Speaker or workshop facilitator at events sharing operational experience and lessons from the live roll-out of Universal Credit and the development of approaches to Successful Tenancies .  Delegates appreciated the opportunity to hear about practical landlord experiences and to learn how they can best prepare themselves and their tenants for changes ahead – with the number and quality of questions following each session demonstrating a lively interest in and thirst to learn from the Highland experiences.

Drawing from extensive career and leadership experience; providing mentoring support and coaching to members to explore future career paths and targeted personal development activities.