Tuesday, 31 August 2010


My colleague has been more badly hurt and the Inspiring Communities project less badly hurt than my last post before my holiday indicated.

Her hand has been more badly damaged than any of us imagined, other colleagues have been much more engaged in supporting and covering for her while I’ve been away than I realised while I was, and sorting such things out myself has taken more of my time in my first week back than people will have noticed. A little trying for us, but a real burden for her.

And I suspect that a great deal of pressure has been put on the Department for Communities and Local Government while I’ve been away, to which, in the absence of any further news, I added a further demanding e-mail soon after I returned. Three weeks after writing to say that we cannot expect funding for any work not contractually agreed at that point, a second letter arrives saying ‘we have now considered this further’ (an elegant choice of words) and that the agreement we have entered into with them will be honoured. We are not totally out of the woods - maximum savings are required of us and it says it will ‘actively support you in this task’ - but a revised and reduced programme is better than an abrupt termination. In particular, pupils returning to school this week will be able to begin activities and in some cases courses promised to them before their holiday.

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