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City council strikes gold at national award ceremony

A project highlighted by TV presenter Kevin McCloud as a new approach to tackling the climate emergency has earned Lancaster City Council top marks at this year’s Local Government Chronicle Awards.

Diane Neville with Kevin McCloud

Diane Neville with Kevin McCloud

The awards are the Oscars of local government and celebrate the very best projects that councils have engaged in over the previous 12 months.

The city council was shortlisted in four categories at this year’s awards, beating off competition from hundreds of local authorities.

And it was the entry for the Net Zero category that struck gold, with judges saying the winning project has “set a shining example for other local authorities to emulate”.

The council’s entry focussed on the way its Climate Emergency Local Plan Review engaged with young people, schools, community groups and national conferences throughout its development.

Through the plan, the council has been at the forefront of integrating net zero into local planning policy.

Its push for higher energy efficiency standards have influenced the landscape of national policy and in doing so has opened the door to other authorities to fight for change themselves.

To highlight the approach, council planners also appeared with Grand Designs presenter Kevin McCloud on Channel 4’s “The Great Climate Fight”.

Mark Davies, Lancaster City Council’s chief executive, said: ““This award is richly deserved and is testament to the commitment and dedication of the project team and it’s wonderful to see that their hard work has been recognised nationally.

“The council is working tirelessly to tackle the climate emergency and this project is a great example of local authorities can make a huge difference to the lives of their communities.

“It was also a pleasure to be nominated in three other categories as well and this underlines our commitment to continually improving what we do for the diverse communities we serve.”

The other categories the council was shortlisted for were ‘Digital Impact’ for the introduction of a new digital reporting system, along with the ‘Community Involvement’ and ‘Public/Public Partnership’ (in conjunction with Lancaster University) categories for a project to address the underrepresentation of young people (ages 18-30) in planning processes.

Last updated: 13 June 2024

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