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The Association of District Secretaries is planning to change its name. ...
The Association of District Secretaries is planning to change its name.

Its executive committee has discussed the new name, intended to reflect the diverse range of council officers it represents. It is also argued a clearer name is needed to overcome confusion over the term 'secretary'.

'We still get approaches from people who think we represent the typing community,' said ADS president Mike Harris.

The move follows the stalling by the Society of County Secretaries of a merger with the ADS. The county secretaries delayed the union, after two years of negotiations, because of uncertainty over the review (LGC, 2 Dec).

Mr Harris said the association's name was in danger of becoming outdated.

It currently has members from metropolitan councils and London boroughs. It also aims to recruit members from new unitary authorities in Wales and England.

The term 'secretary' is also out of vogue with councils, which tend to use the title head of administration or legal services.

Mr Harris said the term 'council secretary' had not caught on in the same way as 'company secretary' had in the private sector.

He denied the name change was an attempt at a merger by the back door. 'It is not an aggressive act. We are still in discussions with SOCS,' he said.

The Association of Council Secretaries and Solicitors has been raised as a possible replacement but members are currently being canvassed for suggestions.

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