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Making a real difference - Council shortlisted for national awards

14 August 2019

Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council is in the running for a number of top local government awards.

Image of ASPE finalist award logo

The Council has been shortlisted in four categories of the prestigious Association of Public Service Excellence (APSE) Annual Service Awards.

Not only that, the local authority is in contention to scoop the coveted APSE Council of the Year award.

This is a record-breaking tenth year that the Council has been shortlisted for the top spot.

What are the APSE Annual Service Awards?

APSE's Annual Service Awards recognise the contribution of council staff and how the services they provide make a huge difference to the residents and communities they serve.

Paul O'Brien, APSE Chief Executive, said: "Local councils do great work but too often they are the unsung heroes of public services.

"These awards are about celebrating the hard work and achievements of frontline services, and the local government workforce delivering them.

"These services and local initiatives make a real difference to local places and local people."

This year marks the 20th edition of the awards.

What have the Council been shortlisted for?

As well as the Council of the Year award, the Council has picked up nominations in four categories:

  • Best Workforce Initiative - the 'Well Led Leadership Programme' has boosted adult social care in the area by providing a local network of registered managers with excellent training, learning opportunities and stronger collaboration with partners.
  • Best Collaborative Working Initiative - the Council enjoys a hugely successful and innovative partnership with Darlington Borough Council named 'Xentrall Shared Services' which provides ICT, Transactional HR, Finance and Design and Print functions. The initiative has achieved £14.6million of savings in ten years.
  • Best Innovation or Demand Management Initiative - recent changes to the "visibly transformed" Council's 'OneCall' assisted living solution have seen improvements in call handling and response times, over 500 referrals to the service and a Care Quality Commission registration for providing personal care.
  • Internal Service Team of the Year - Street Cleansing and Streetscene Service - the Council's 'Stockton Town Centre Cleansing Team' work incredibly hard year-round, and across the town's events and markets programme, to ensure it is kept to the highest standard.

What does the Council think?

Councillor Bob Cook, Leader of Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council, said: "It's a fantastic achievement for our services and staff to be shortlisted in so many categories of the highly respected APSE awards.

"We remain extremely ambitious for Stockton-on-Tees and its residents despite the huge financial reductions we're experiencing, with all the tough decisions and challenges that brings.

"I'd like to congratulate everyone involved for their commitment and dedication to public service."

Julie Danks, Interim Managing Director, said: "We set ourselves very high standards in everything that we do and this is real evidence that we have a strong record of achievement and, simply, getting things done.

"As always when our work is recognised with award nominations, it's important for us to acknowledge that we don't always get things right and, when that does happen, we look hard at how we can continue to learn and improve.

"To be shortlisted across so many categories is a ringing endorsement of our hard-working staff who strive to deliver high quality services every day for the people of the Borough."

When are the winners announced?

After rigorous judging, the winners will be announced at APSE's Annual Charity Awards Dinner, in aid of Parkinson's UK, on Thursday 12 September in Newcastle.