Barking & Dagenham LBC has claimed the coveted Council of the Year prize at the LGC Awards 2018, the most hotly contested award of its kind in the sector.
Barking & Dagenham beat fierce competition from finalists and fellow London borough Southwark LBC which was highly commended by the judges.
The other finalists were Ashford BC, Luton BC, Newark & Sherwood DC, and Stockton-on-Tees BC.
LGC editor Nick Golding said: “The LGC Awards are about celebrating the people and organisations doing the most to ensure their area succeeds. These people are true innovators, who are dedicated to local public service and improving their local area despite austerity.
“All too often these bold and tireless public servants are denied the recognition they deserve by the government and national media. Even local residents may take the efforts of council workforces for granted – but bins get emptied, areas get regenerated, older people supported and vulnerable children get the care they need.
“All of these tasks are performed by a workforce motivated by pride in their area, battling to support their local population despite the loss of staff and brutal cuts.
“The LGC Awards are about giving these people their rightful place in the spotlight and thanking them for their great work for local populations.”
Andrew Jepp, managing director of Council of the Year sponsor Zurich Municipal, said: “We are really proud to continue to support local government through the LGC awards. It is more important than ever for local authorities to showcase the best of the sector, to share, to learn and to support each other in such a difficult climate.
“All the finalists are exemplars in their own way and should feel justifiably proud of being finalists. However, there can only be one winner and Barking & Dagenham stood out for the clarity of their story of ambition, improvement and delivery across a wide spectrum.”