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A Midlands council is attempting to take the agony out of acronyms for people jaded by council jargon. ...
A Midlands council is attempting to take the agony out of acronyms for people jaded by council jargon.

Hereford and Worcester CC has produced a 30-page short-cut through council abbreviations and acronyms to 'demystify' local government communications.

If you wanted some CRISSPs (care record in social services packages) or CRESS (competition regulations education support system) or were perhaps keen to take the WHEEL (Worcestershire and Herefordshire environmental education liaison group) or even the PROW (public right of way), then the AALG (Acronyms and Abbreviations commonly used in Local Government) is the publication for you.

Committee services manager John Williams, who wrote the booklet, said it was a very boring job to compile the guide.

'But I think it makes an interesting read,' he said.

'It started from a mutual feeling that there were too many acronyms creeping in and that lay people and new councillors didn't stand a chance of understanding them.'

Mr Williams points out that the guide is not just intended to decipher Hereford and Worcester CC documents; the council has a policy of avoiding jargon.

But even the guide's compiler is not necessarily enlightened by its contents.

'In a way, all these acronyms are bizarre,' he said. 'SCOOT, for example. What the hell does that mean?'

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