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2018 LOCAL GOVERNMENT AWARDS: NORTHERN IRELAND’S “BEST IN CLASS” COUNCILS SHARE SUCCESS

Councils throughout Northern Ireland celebrated yesterday as the nine award category winners of the 2018 Local Government Awards were announced. The event was hosted by Sarah Travers at the Armagh City Hotel.

The Awards are co-ordinated by NILGA and the Association of Public Service Excellence (APSE), this year they attracted an unprecedented 78 entries and showcased brilliance in service provision, new initiatives and the personal commitment from councils, councillors, staff and partners.

Speaking at the event, Councillor Dermot Curran, Northern Ireland Local Government Association (NILGA) President said,

“Congratulations to the winners and to all the 11 Councils who took the time to submit entries into the 2018 Local Government Awards.

“We’re almost a full electoral term on from the big changes to local government. A huge amount of hard work and vision has gone into modernising councils for local communities, businesses and visitors – as well as meeting needs of wider government and civic society.

“As community impact grows and performance improves right across our 11 councils, these awards are testimony to how local government is truly at the hub of developing locally designed solutions to local need, as well as planning for a sustainable future. They also provide fantastic learning tools for councils, in an environment where every penny counts.

“We can do things better by learning from the best. Excellence and efficiency are things that NILGA is passionate about, and it is reflected in our ambitious councils who are celebrating strong public services delivered through local people tonight”.

APSE Chief Executive, Paul O'Brien said,

“Too often the creativity and dedication shown by those who work in frontline services goes unnoticed. This is why these awards are so important. They are a fitting tribute to the resilience and inventiveness of council staff across Northern Ireland who continue to work tirelessly to deliver first-rate services; going the extra mile to add real value to communities.

“Alongside NILGA, APSE understand that local councils are key to creating a better, more prosperous Northern Ireland. As these awards demonstrate, there is no lack of challenge and no poverty of ambition among local authorities.”

The Awards cover nine categories and sponsor partners / support bodies contributing are: Association for Public Service Excellence; William Johnston Memorial Trust; Enterprise Northern Ireland; Society of Local Authority Chief Executives and Senior Managers; Northern Ireland Local Government Association; National Association of Councillors; Sustainable NI; Quarry Products Association and Tourism NI.

Nominees were judged by an independent panel, the winners in each category were announced at the Gala Awards Recognition Evening which followed the NILGA’s Flagship Annual Conference, “Building Sustainable Communities, Delivering a Better Northern Ireland for Everyone”, at the Armagh City Hotel, Armagh (11th October 2018).

--ENDS--

NOTES TO EDITOR:
The finalists for the 2018 Local Government Awards are:

BEST LOCAL AUTHORITY SERVICE TEAM
Sponsored by the Association for Public Service Excellence [APSE]
1. Belfast City Council Property & Projects Team - Belfast City Council
2. Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council Sports Services Unit - Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council
3. Maghera Leisure Centre Leisure Team - Mid Ulster District Council
4. Mid and East Antrim Waste Team - Mid & East Antrim Borough Council

Winner: Mid and East Antrim Waste Team - Mid & East Antrim Borough Council

EMPLOYEE OF THE YEAR
Sponsored by the William Johnston Memorial Trust [WJMT]
1. Colin Agnew - Belfast City Council
2. Deynah Doherty, Council Choir - Derry City and Strabane District Council
3. Sean McKevitt, Neighbourhood Renewal Officer - Newry, Mourne and Down District Council

Winner: Deynah Doherty, Council Choir - Derry City and Strabane District Council

BEST ENTERPRISE INITIATIVE BY A COUNCIL
Sponsored by Enterprise Northern Ireland
1. Investment Programme - Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council
2. Mid & East Antrim Food and Drink Network - Mid & East Antrim Borough Council
3. Project - Mid Ulster Skills Forum - Mid Ulster District Council
4. Digital NMD - Newry, Mourne and Down District Council

Winner: Project - Mid Ulster Skills Forum - Mid Ulster District Council

BEST LOCAL AUTHORITY COMMUNITY PLANNING INITIATIVE
Sponsored by the Northern Ireland Branch of the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives and Senior Managers [SOLACE NI]
1. Mid & East Antrim Dementia Friendly Communities - Mid & East Antrim Borough Council
2. Mid & East Antrim Support Hub - Mid & East Antrim Borough Council
3. MUDC Community Planning Partnership - Mid Ulster District Council

Winner: MUDC Community Planning Partnership - Mid Ulster District Council

BEST LOCAL AUTHORITY ELECTED MEMBER DEVELOPMENT INITIATIVE
Sponsored by the Northern Ireland Local Government Association [NILGA]
1. Member Development Steering Group - Ards and North Down Borough Council
2. Leadership Development Programme for Elected Members - Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council
3. Member Development - A Key Driver in Corporate Performance - Derry City and Strabane District Council

Winner: Member Development - A Key Driver in Corporate Performance - Derry City and Strabane District Council

BEST INITIATIVE BY A COUNCILLOR / COUNCILLOR GROUP
Sponsored by the National Association of Councillors [NAC]
1. Leisure Membership Turnaround Project - Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council
2. Councillor Julie Flaherty - Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council
3. Project - Hong Kong Trade Visit to Mid Ulster - Mid Ulster District Council

Winner: Councillor Julie Flaherty - Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council

BEST LOCAL AUTHORITY TOURISM INITIATIVE
Sponsored by Tourism Northern Ireland
1. Belfast Waterfront - Belfast City Council
2. Derry Halloween - Derry City and Strabane District Council
3. Developing EPIC Experiences - Newry, Mourne and Down District Council

Winner: Belfast Waterfront - Belfast City Council

EXCELLENCE IN ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY BY A LOCAL AUTHORITY
Sponsored by Sustainable NI
1. C.L.E.A.R. (Community Learning Environmental Awareness Responsibility) - Ards and North Down Borough Council
2. Environmental Stewardship - Derry City and Strabane District Council
3. Promoting Sustainability in Mid & East Antrim Borough - Mid & East Antrim Borough Council

Winner: Environmental Stewardship - Derry City and Strabane District Council

BEST LOCAL AUTHORITY DESIGN & BUILD CAPITAL PROJECT
Sponsored by Quarry Products Association NI (QPANI)
1. Magherafelt Public Realm Scheme - Mid Ulster District Council
2. Newry Leisure Centre Michael Lipsett - Newry, Mourne and Down District Council
3. Seamus Heaney HomePlace - Mid Ulster District Council

Winner: Newry Leisure Centre Michael Lipsett - Newry, Mourne and Down District Council

THE SUPPORTING BODIES ARE WHO ARE CONTRIBUTING FINANCIALLY AND ADMINISTRATIVELY TO THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT AWARDS ARE:
1. Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE);
2. William Johnston Memorial Trust (WJMT);
3. Enterprise Northern Ireland;
4. Society of Local Authority Chief Executives and Senior Managers (SOLACE);
5. Northern Ireland Local Government Association (NILGA);
6. National Association of Councillors (NAC);
7. Tourism NI;
8. Sustainable NI (SNI);
9. Quarry Products Association (QPANI).

The award winners will be announced at the gala dinner which will follow the NILGA Annual Conference, to be held on Thursday 11th October 2018, Armagh City Hotel – full details at www.nilga.org

For more information or to arrange for interview please contact Mark Maher, NILGA, Tel: 028 9079 8972 Email: m.maher@nilga.org or APSE Mo Baines on mbaines@apse.org.uk

 

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