Not long ago, an Exeter city councillor on the Executive said to me that he might be called old-fashioned but he saw it as his job, having been elected, to take the right decisions as he saw them. He was right: he is old-fashioned. Whether councillors like it or not, the paternalistic or top-down model … More Doing Council business differently: Part 2 – Leadership
In several previous posts, brought together in Can the Council be a leader?, I have illustrated why I believe Exeter City Council needs to change its political and administrative culture if it is to succeed in harnessing the energy and talents within the city to make it a truly liveable place in the 21st century. … More Doing Council business differently: Part 1 – Engagement
Exeter City Council’s default position is to look inwards on itself, but it can’t show the necessary 21st century leadership until that culture changes. Most people from the City Council who’ve read as far as this will already be outraged at what they see as a misrepresentation. They will argue that Council consults on proposed … More Can the Council be a leader?
We can do so much better than the current High Street business model, and its current difficulties offer Exeter new opportunities There’s a lot of truth in the observation that Exeter’s city centre is a “clone town”. Along the length of the High Street and in the shopping centres at Guildhall and Princesshay, the retail … More High Street Greens
It’s not only our side streets that can be made people-friendly Traffic restraint on residential streets is not new – humps, speed limits, barriers, residents’ parking schemes, pedestrianisation, and so on. Some of these measures have become discredited because of their impact on driving behaviour: for example speed humps encourage breaking and acceleration with consequent … More Reclaiming our main roads for residents
Consultation on the Greater Exeter Strategic Plan (GESP) looks like being an expensive and time-wasting ritual. Beware of too sublime a sense Of your own worth and consequence. The man who dreams himself so great, And his importance of such weight, That all around in all that’s done Must move and act for him alone, … More Our planners’ cat is out of the bag
Surveys are not always reliable. Yet if you asked the usual representative sample how they liked to spend time, attending local authority committee meetings is unlikely to score highly. This is understandable. Public participation is strictly controlled. In Exeter, members of the public can submit questions (3 days in advance) to be asked at any … More Scrutiny can work