Bryony Houlden, Chief Executive, South West Councils
Welcome to the latest edition of SWNews.We are pleased to report that we had a successful Strategic Chief Executives' meeting on 24 February, when we heard from the new Chief Executive of the national LGA, Mark Lloyd. At this meeting we launched this year’s South West Local Authority Challenge which will be held on 6 October. The response from the Chief Executives was extremely positive, with some really good feedback from them on their teams' experiences of the event. As a result of feedback we are going to make some refinements to the Challenge – the main one is to avoid overcrowding in the venue we are limiting team numbers this year to 20 – it was very energetic last year with 22 teams but a bit of a squash. As you may know the winning team was from a partnership of three authorities, the team of 6 can include any partner organisations you want and we are delighted that we already have role player volunteers from the Police and Fire services as well as local authorities. Bookings will be on a first come first served basis and it is fine at this stage to just book a team without detailed information about team members. We will run a waiting list for any disappointed applicants and will also offer them first refusal of a place on Challenge 2017!
We are also continuing to support coaching across the region and are delighted to be running our Annual Conference in partnership with the Association for Coaching, the professional body dedicated to promoting best practice and raising the awareness and standards of coaching, worldwide. Our keynote speaker is the renowned expert in the field, Professor David Clutterbuck.
You might have also seen on our social media sites that we will be working with the Chartered Trading Standards Institute as a delivery partner for their annual training calendar again during 2016! 2015 proved to a very successful year and happily all candidates now have their results with a very good pass rate. We are thrilled to be part of this delivery partnership once again. Courses can be booked directly via the CTSI website but are also on our website with all our other events and services – if there are events that you think we should be developing to support you please do let us know.
And finally watch out for the launch of our E-Portal, The South West Councils' Skills Centre, which will be available form Easter 2016.
As always, please do continue to let us know what you think of this newsletter or submit stories for publication, as well as ideas for future events and please keep telling us about your successes you want to share in this newsletter.
Nuclear power station to boost local economy
On the 21 October, the Government announced that the proposed nuclear power plant, Hinckley Point C, in West Somerset is to become a reality. There will be two reactors at the site, with the first expected to be operational by 2023.
Both Somerset County Council and West Somerset Council have welcomed the approval of Hinckley Point C. Both councils have highlighted the economic benefit that the station will bring to the area and the region. It is expected that the construction of the plant will create 25,000 jobs and will inject £100m into the local economy, in addition to 900 permanent jobs for its 60 year lifespan.