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Council of the year

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Winner: Barking & Dagenham LBC

Barking & Dagenham is facing both huge challenges and opportunities and is forging a new relationship with citizens. Its independent Growth Commission gave practical recommendations that are now being implemented. ‘Ambition 2020’ is a radical reshaping of the council based on the delivering these recommendations and new engagement with residents. The council is developing transport schemes to exploit the borough’s proximity to the City of London. It has established its Reside company to offer affordable rented homes and also allows council tenants to own up to 70% of their home. It also has London’s first art-based enterprise zone for artists, entrepreneurs and creatives who are otherwise leaving London.


Highly Commended: Southwark LBC

Southwark has made 10 ‘fairer future’ promises to residents. Examples of its progress towards these include being close to its 2,000 apprenticeships target and the UK’s largest council house building programme - so far it has built 360 council homes with a target of 11,000 by 2043. The council is also tackling high childhood obesity rates by delivering free healthy school meals for all primary school children and offering residents free swimming and gym use. Ofsted has rated 90% of primary schools ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’. Southwark has reduced back-office costs and last year increased council tax for only the first time in eight years.


Judges’ comments for Barking & Dagenham LBCThe judges thought this bold council was equally strong on developing its civic society, economic growth and its organisational development plans and is doing this in a uniquely changing setting, marking them out as a place others could learn from.


Judges’ comments for Southwark LBCImpressive and substantive approach to regen and outstanding response in emergency, for the sector as a whole to learn from.



Ashford BC

Luton BC

Newark & Sherwood DC

Stockton-On-Tees LBC



Zurich logo

Zurich logo

A word from the award’s sponor

We would like to say a huge congratulations to all those who have been shortlisted for the 2018 LGC Awards. Zurich Municipal is particularly proud to support the Council of the Year Award as we know how much time, effort and teamwork all the entrants have to put in. When local authorities realise their vision for positive change, the benefits are felt by thousands, if not millions, of people. This means everybody wins. For more information visit



Andrew Jepp, managing director, Zurich Municipal

Mark Lloyd, chief executive, Local Government Association

Steven Pleasant, chief executive Tameside MBC

Matt Prosser, chief executive, Dorset Councils Partnership

Barry Quirk, chief executive, Kensington & Chelsea RBC

Martin Reeves, chief executive, Coventry City Council

Joanne Roney, chief executive, Manchester City Council


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