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President update 3rd April - latest news from ADEPT

Welcome to the latest edition of my monthly update, which provides a snapshot of ADEPT projects and events.

The deadline for entering the annual ADEPT President’s Awards is fast approaching on 28th April. I would really encourage members to enter – it really is a highlight of the ADEPT calendar, designed to celebrate the work of members and partners across the country. For the first time, we have introduced the ADEPT President’s Special Recognition Award, where individuals can be nominated for their work. The full details are on the ADEPT website.

The ADEPT Spring Conference and Presidential Awards Dinner will take place on 25th May. We are delighted to confirm that our keynote speaker will be the Rt Hon Chris Skidmore MP, who published Mission Zero: Independent Review of Net Zero earlier this year. We also intend to launch our new Corporate Strategy at the event so plenty to look forward to. Book your place here.

I’m really pleased to announce that ADEPT has established a dedicated Climate Change Board, which will act as the voice of ADEPT when speaking on strategic climate change issues. The board will be outward-facing towards government and our partners, rather than a support offer to individual local authorities or act as a networking forum. The Board will have its first full meeting in April, and will then meet quarterly – the meeting notes will be available on the ADEPT website in due course.

Live Labs 2 is continuing apace, with the seven projects all working hard on their outline business cases before the programme goes live in April. A communications workshop was held earlier this month, aimed at communications leads for the project – it was a really useful session and great for the leads to meet for the first time.

As you may be aware, earlier in the year we commissioned a research organisation, Shared Intelligence, to undertake a Survey of Place Directors, looking at perceptions of ADEPT. This piece of work is now being finalised, and Shared Intelligence will present the results at the AGM on 25th May.

Events and other news

March’s Lunch & Learn session was hosted by the Environment Agency and explored the £200m Flood and Coastal Innovation programme, specifically focusing on the 25 local authority projects delivering innovative and practical actions to bolster flood and coastal resilience. The next Lunch & Learn on Friday 28th April is entitled Procurement Potential and will be hosted by Anthony Collins Solicitors. The session will review the proposed changes to the new Procurement Bill and provide a practical walk through of the proposed infrastructure procurement process. Places for are free to ADEPT members and you can find further information and register here.

It’s your last chance to book your place on the Green Finance training course which will take place on 25th April. This event is aimed at place leaders and senior finance business partners and will include the opportunity for participants to bring a live issue or challenge about how to identify the funding/ finance for a local decarbonisation/ adaptation/ nature recovery project and get some there-and-then feedback and guidance from our panel of expert speakers. Full details and booking information are on the ADEPT website.

Following discussions around skills at the ADEPT 2022 Autumn Conference, we are working with Colas to pull together a group of interested and interesting people to find and propose answers to recognised people issues of recruitment, staff retention, equality, diversity, inclusion and adapting to future roles and technology. The objective of the first event – being held in Oxford on 3 May - is focused specifically on designing a campaign to attract young people into Place from diverse backgrounds, and to create a toolkit of great practice on staff retention. The event is targeted at our LA members – if you’d like to attend, please contact Hannah Bartram asap as spaces are limited.


This month’s Climate Change blog features David West from the Forestry Commission, who talks about the Woodland Creation Accelerator Fund. This fund will kickstart tree planting activity, and has been developed to ensure there are enough people, with the right skills, within local authorities to organise and deliver tree planting at scale. The blog is here.

The Live Labs blog features two Commissioning Board members Carol Valentine from Kent County Council and Jason Pavey from Atkins, who have specific shared responsibility for communications. In the blog, Carol and Jason talk about their role on the Board and how the spirit of communications is embedded in the ambitions for Live Labs 2. The blog is here.

As ever, you can find out more about ADEPT’s latest news, publications and the work of our boards and groups on the website:

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