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FEATURES - AN INSPECTOR CALLS

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Haringey LBC ...
Haringey LBC

Haringey LBC's enforcement services are fair with excellent prospects for improvement, according to the Best Value Inspection Service.

The BVIS report said users regarded the service as responsive and its staff as helpful, and found that it had a clear vision linked to corporate and community priorities. It gave

it one star.

However, the service's aims were insufficiently challenging, said inspectors, and arrangements for monitoring enforcement standards were inconsistent.

There was also a low level of awareness in the borough about enforcement services, due to a lack of publicly available guidance on the subject and an underdeveloped website.

Inspectors found that corporate resources were in place to implement an improvement plan, bolstering confidence in the service's potential for improvement.

Hertsmere BC

The housing services provided by Hertsmere BC are fair and have promising prospects for further improvement, according to a report from the Best Value Inspection Service.

Inspectors found the services had been completely reorganised following a review by the housing inspectorate last January which had awarded the service no stars and said it had unlikely prospects for improvement. The service scored one star this time around.

Martin Palmer, lead housing inspector, said Hertsmere was to be praised for the way it responded to the Audit Commission's original findings.

'In particular, we would commend the way councillors and staff have worked together to deliver real improvements in service delivery,' he said.

'While the council still has some way to go, particularly in housing advice and the development of a robust private sector housing strategy, we consider that the prospects for further improvement are promising.'

South Hams DC

The leisure and recreation service at South Hams DC is good with promising prospects for improvement, according to the Best Value Inspection Service.

The council has a clear vision for the service and l eisure and culture strategies have been put in place. The service was given two stars.

Inspectors found user satisfaction at leisure centres to be high, and praised the council for its positive work in sports, art and play development.

However, there was concern about the lack of an overall strategy, based on assessment of need, for children's play, and the fact visits to leisure centres had fallen in the absence of an effective marketing campaign.

Prospects for improvement had improved significantly since the service's last inspection in December 2001, said inspectors.

In particular, plans to implement new management arrangements in the council's leisure centres were progressing well, as was a scheme to build a new sports hall.

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