Author Archives: justinhgriggs

A whistlestop tour – the return

Once again I’ve not kept a promise to myself to blog regularly. Hence I owe some thanks to some great tweeps like Dave Briggs, Carl Haggerty and Ellie Stoneley for nudging me along recently. So as a quick update since my last post, here’s another rollercoaster ride of events and stuff…… Our Chairman, Councillor Michael […]

Next steps for neighbourhood planning?

So the Localism Act is now on the statute book but what are the next steps for one of its key components – neighbourhood planning? In this guest post, Crispin Moor from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) shares some of his thoughts: Action for Market Towns (AMT) held a symposium last […]

Local councils will be key to implementing new powers

Last week we held our annual conference for larger local (parish and town) councils. The sold out event included a panel discussion on localism and the new powers contained in the Localism Act, in particular the general power of competence. During this session our chief executive spoke about our take on the new powers for […]

In praise of the village fete

Last week the Communities and Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles gave a speechurging faith groups to make use of new powers in the Localism Bill to end their reliance on the goodwill of local authorities and to play an active and visible role in society. He used the speech to again set out what the […]

Yet another whistlestop tour

This weekend sees #localgovcamp head back to Birmingham, the location of my very first unconference outing. I will be going along and returning to that scene – both the place and more particularly the people – which helped inspire and enthuse me on the digital front. I mentioned the interesting, thought provoking and innovative people […]

Stand and deliver

Anyone who knows me knows I’ve got a lot of time for the tens of thousands of people up and down the country who get involved and make a difference in their community as local councillors. That’s a lot of people, in a lot of places, doing a whole lot of stuff. I for one […]

Big Society and community organisers

A few weeks ago I attended and participated in the national conference of the Society of Local Council Clerks in Durham. We work closely with the SLCC – who are the professional body for around 8,000 local council clerks – and whose national conference is always for me a highlight of the autumn conference season. […]

Big Society #4: The importance of good governance

To quote the now infamous line during the General Election TV debates:  ‘I agree with Nick’. Except in this case it’s not Nick, it’s Rory – more specifically Rory Stewart, the new MP for Penrith and the Border and Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group on local democracy. NALC is currently working with the […]

The Big Society #3: The community right to build – do we know if it will work?

The Big Society reform that has currently got lots of discussion and confusion swirling around it is the Government’s plan to introduce a ‘Community right to build’. All the ambitions sound, in both Big Society and localism terms, spot on. The big and radical idea is that if a community agrees that it wants to […]

The Big Society #2: Strengthening local leadership

Okay, so one of the things the Big Society thing revolves around is an agenda to empower communities to come together to address local issues. This is to be achieved by giving new powers and rights to neighbourhood groups, quoted by the Coalition Government as the ‘little platoons’ of civil society and the building blocks […]