Council scoops national award for partnership work

14 Feb 2017

Northumberland County Council has scooped a national award for its partnership work with Town and Parish Councils.

The Keep Britain Tidy Network Awards recognise and reward the best campaigning, service delivery and partnership working across England

The Partnership Award recognises those organisations that have formed strong partnerships to successfully work together to improve areas.

The Council’s Neighbourhood Environmental Action Team (NEAT) and a number of Town and Parish Councils in the south east of Northumberland have established a joint funded model to deliver improved frontline environmental services through partnership agreements.

These include well established partnership arrangements with Ashington, Blyth, Choppington, Cramlington and Seaton Valley Councils. Other areas are also following suit with local councils in Amble, Berwick, Corbridge, Haltwhistle, Newbiggin and Morpeth all working with the County Council to enhance the service in their area.

These arrangements enable the Town or Parish Councils to enhance the ‘core’ service provided by the County Council to deliver a higher standard of grounds maintenance and cleansing tailored to the requirements of the local community.  

This has been achieved by drawing on the skills and knowledge of each partner and using additional funds from the Town and Parish Council to invest in extra staff and the equipment they need and integrating them into the County Council’s front line teams.

The initiative also supports local people by providing apprenticeship and employment opportunities and promotes greater volunteering activity and civic pride from the local community who can make a real difference to the quality of the environment in which they live.

Councillor Ian Swithenbank, Cabinet Member for Local Services said: “Keeping Northumberland looking its best is a priority for this council and that’s why we invest time and money in it.

“I’d like to thank all the Town and Parish Councils who work in partnership with us to deliver these key frontline services, and this national award is great recognition for the scheme.

“Working in this way makes such a positive difference to the quality of our local environments and I hope this award encourage other Towns and Parishes to join with us in developing similar partnerships for their local areas.”

Keep Britain Tidy Chief Executive Allison Ogden-Newton said: “The work that local authorities and others are doing to improve our environment, in the face of very severe budget constraints, is superb.

“I would like to congratulate all the finalists and winners for their creativity, innovation and commitment to delivering quality services for their residents. The innovative thinking that local authorities are demonstrating echoes Keep Britain Tidy’s own approach to tackling the issues of litter and waste and to improving public spaces.

“Our conference is the perfect opportunity to share ideas as well as recognising the hard work that is going on across the country, day in, day out.”