Regulator publishes revised engagement plan for Thistle Housing Association


18 February 2020

The Scottish Housing Regulator today published an updated engagement plan for Thistle Housing Association. The plan confirms that Thistle has selected Sanctuary Scotland Housing Association as its preferred partner.

This comes after Thistle’s governing body decided the partnership would be in the best interests of its tenants and service users. It took this decision after an independent review into the best way forward for the organisation.

The Regulator first used its statutory powers to appoint a manager and members to Thistle’s governing body in August 2018. It took this action to protect the interests of its tenants after it identified serious and widespread failures to comply with Regulatory Standards of Governance and Financial Management.

The Regulator also found that Thistle had failed to meet outcome two of the Scottish Social Housing Charter in how it communicates with its tenants and service users.

Ian Brennan, Director of Regulation at the Regulator said:
“The statutory manager and the appointees have brought considerable expertise to bear on the issues that led us to intervene at Thistle. This proposed partnership with Sanctuary Scotland and the provision of immediate support provides a way forward to safeguard the interests of tenants and service users.

“Thistle will now progress a transfer of its homes to Sanctuary Scotland. Sanctuary Scotland will also provide immediate support to ensure that Thistle’s safety and compliance weaknesses are fully addressed and major remedial works to its properties can be progressed. Thistle and Sanctuary Scotland will develop the transfer proposals in discussion with Thistle’s tenants and residents.

“We will continue to monitor Thistle’s progress as it works with Sanctuary Scotland to address the serious and historic failures that led to our intervention.”

Read the updated engagement plan for:

Notes to editors

1. The Scottish Housing Regulator was established on 1 April 2011 under the Housing (Scotland) Act 2010. Its objective is to safeguard and promote the interests of tenants and others who use local authority and RSL housing services. The Regulator operates independently of Scottish Ministers and is accountable directly to the Scottish Parliament. It assumed its full regulatory responsibilities on 1 April 2012. The Regulator consists of the Chair and eight Board members. More information about the Regulator can be found on its website at
2. SHR sets out how it regulates social landlords in its published framework – Regulation of Social Housing in Scotland.


Tracy Davren Communications Manager