With Anthony away, this month’s blog comes from ADEPT 1st Vice President and Chair of the Transport & Connectivity Board, Ann Carruthers.
Hello! As it’s my blog this month, I’ll start with Transport & Connectivity Board news. We had DfT, National Highways and the Office for Road and Rail at our recent meeting. DfT highlighted that bids for the latest round of ZEBRA funding must be in by mid-December, whilst National Highways talked about their Environmental Sustainability Strategy and ORR introduced their annual assessment of National Highways performance. As ever we had some lively debate at the meeting.
At our Leadership Team meeting, we received an update from Nico Heslop, Local Government Finance Director at DLUHC who provided an update on local government finance and three year settlements, which we discussed along with the pressing need for greater capital / revenue flexibilities. We were also joined by Karen McShane, CIHT President, who talked about key priorities, recent work with government and potential for joint working going forward.
News and publications
We have now launched our Manifesto for Stronger Places, which sets out the strategic objectives and top priorities that we want to see adopted in a future government’s approach to local authorities. Aimed at political parties of all stripes, making the case for place has never been more vital. You can also find the press release here.
ADEPT has submitted a response to the Housing APPG inquiry into S106 and CIL – you can read it here. Also, ADEPT’s response to the Public Accounts Committee call for evidence on the Government's resources & waste reforms is available here. We’ve written about it in this month’s climate change blog, see below and it made the front page of the MJ.
We published our position on nutrient neutrality, issued on 13th September. We also issued a statement as part of the Blueprint Coalition following news of the Government’s intention to drop or roll back on various environmental commitments.
We would like to welcome Norse Group as a new Corporate Partner! We look forward to working with them.
Live Labs 2
As a member of the Commissioning Board, I’m pleased to say that the Strategic Outline Business Cases for each of the 7 projects have now been published and are available here. We’ve also published a new introductory video, that introduces each of the themes and gives a glimpse into the vision for each project – you can watch it here. We’re delighted to be presenting on the programme at the XXVII World Road Congress, being held in Prague this week.
Our Climate Change blog this month comes from the Chair of ADEPT’s Waste Group, Steve Palfrey. ADEPT recently submitted its response to the Public Accounts Committees call for evidence on resources and waste reforms. Read Steve’s blog here.
It’s an introduction to Wessex and its programme to decarbonise maintenance across the whole asset lifecycle in our latest Live Labs blog this month. Somerset's Mike O'Dowd Jones and Cornwall's Matt Philips talk about the partnership between Hampshire County Council, Somerset Council and Cornwall Council. Find out more here.
Our next Lunch & Learn session on 20th October is hosted by Ringway. Book your free place here for Priming the pump: diverse recruitment into highways teams which examines how to bring people into the sector through diverse recruitment and using partnerships to deliver social value in the local context.
You have until midnight in Monday 1st October to book your place on the ADEPT 5th National Traffic Managers Conference! This is being held in Northampton on 5th October. Preparing, Delivering and Managing Resilient Road Network’ is focused on resilience, with sessions on climate change and security, EV charging infrastructure, and active travel. I am really looking forward to a stimulating and interesting day.
Finally – I would like to remind you all that our 2023 ADEPT’s Autumn Conference - Creating strong places: leadership from the ground up will be in Nottingham on the 16th and 17th November. The sessions this year are wide-ranging and include place, political dynamics and the public mood; the future of transport; and what we learned from Covid-19 as well as greening urban spaces and protecting the physical and digitally engineered world.
It's great value for money, always incredibly popular and a fantastic opportunity to network with colleagues from across the country. Have a look at the latest draft programme and book your place here!
You can find out more about ADEPT’s latest news, publications and the work of our boards and groups on the website: www.adeptnet.org.uk.