All Blog Posts (738)

They are watching... but whats the point?

A curious story from our local occupy group. Over the past few months some of us have been talking about Yarn bombing, a gentle form of street art using wool

This week the Olympic torch passes through Lancaster (at a possible cost of £40,000 to local residents for policing, security and associated events). A few people on our Occupy group Facebook page have been commenting on the ethics…


Added by Jez Hall on June 20, 2012 at 18:58 — No Comments

Civil Society discussion on LinkedIn


I think that some of the discussions here on NATCAN have been of a high standard and it may be worth contributing to this one especially those members that have some thoughts about new politics and new forms of people power. Have a look at LinkedIn Civil…


Added by Bren Cook on June 20, 2012 at 10:00 — 1 Comment

There isn't any money

 'New labour' fooled a large part of the population that they could all get something for nothing. They did this with the 'own your own home' propaganda and made everyone believe that we could all be 'pocket capitalists'.

They then organised the building of schools and hospitals and infrastructure for the benefit of us all.

They educated enough of us to understand what was going on and we gradually realised that the system was printing money under the control of a very small…


Added by Roger Alexander on June 15, 2012 at 20:25 — 2 Comments

New Economics Foundation - Happy planet index

Happy Planet Index- NEF

Have a look at this. It's made me think that we need to be able to redefine 'success', 'wealth' and 'valuable'. Costa Rica anyone?

Added by Bren Cook on June 15, 2012 at 8:53 — No Comments

CLG Community Rights .. again ....

 If you and your community want to get rid of some barrier preventing you all from doing something which, in your opinion, would improve things.. you have to ask the council to ask the Government... Is this the same CLG that got rid of the Government Offices, RDAs and other quangos, lit a bonfire of regulations, and pledged to get rid of top down…


Added by Kate Gordon on June 14, 2012 at 18:41 — No Comments

CLG - shopping parades

Eric Pickles turns into a pinko commie!  So, he's suddenly discovered large out of town retail developments kill of local shops, and thence communities ... well done Eric, but that's what happens without planning control, regulation, state intervention, etc. 


Page 9 -

"Acting as a…


Added by Kate Gordon on June 6, 2012 at 17:31 — No Comments

CLG Business Plan - annual report

Not exactly a bodice ripper, but it does have everything in one place, fyi. 

Added by Kate Gordon on May 31, 2012 at 21:22 — No Comments

Community Right to Build


Funding open now - get your bids in! 

Added by Kate Gordon on May 30, 2012 at 14:17 — No Comments

"Houses v Fields"

"Which is a better use of our land? A beautiful green field, or a human home? We have long tied ourselves in knots trying to answer this question. Anne McElvoy ploughs the BBC archive to unearth the tangled roots of one this country's great, eternal inner conflicts."

On iPlayer for 7 days.


Added by Kate Gordon on May 26, 2012 at 22:47 — No Comments

Mmm.. more musings..

I'm just typing up the minutes from the residents forum.  Some Section 106 work is being done in July; a consultation is being done in mid-June; the work will be complete in August.   So, er.. what exactly is the "consultation" about?  LOL < not in a David Cameron way.

Added by Kate Gordon on May 26, 2012 at 21:14 — No Comments

Reflections on Working in Community Development Today

Wheeler Hall in Leeds was packed for this conference, as busy as I have ever seen it, which I think reflects a couple of trends:

  • the increasing interest of funders and policy makers in using community development to achieve their policy goals
  • an increasing need to turn to our fellow citizens to tackle the small and big challenges in life as the impotence of governments becomes increasingly apparent.

The conference opened with John Low from JRF providing a…


Added by Mike Chitty on May 23, 2012 at 11:36 — 5 Comments

Social Mobility

I attended BRAP's 'Line in the Sand' event yesterday.  One of the speakers demonstrated that the use of free school meals as a measure of social mobility masks race discrimination and leads to disproportionate amounts of resources being directed towards white working class pupils…


Added by Kate Gordon on May 22, 2012 at 22:25 — No Comments

New-style ASBOs

Would the 'community trigger' have made any difference to Fiona Pilkington, whose case is supposed to be behind this new measure?  16 youths harrassed the family on a regular basis - where were their parents, more to the point - where was "the community"?   

A new Foyer is being opened adjacent to my estate; one of the more vocal members of one of the residents' forums has…


Added by Kate Gordon on May 22, 2012 at 8:09 — No Comments

CLG publish statutory guidance on CRT Challenge

This is a draft document but can't imagine significant changes. 

Added by Kate Gordon on May 21, 2012 at 16:43 — No Comments


(maybe proscratinating rather than musing...)

Last week, I attended two residents' forums in connection with some freelance work I'm doing in Birmingham.  The two forums were in the same ward but cover different patches, and in that respect reminded me of the two forums in my own neighbourhood where I take the minutes - next door, but quite different feel to them.  However, the thing that really struck me was when one of the residents asked if anything could be done about a situation…


Added by Kate Gordon on May 20, 2012 at 16:41 — No Comments

Interesting infographics

There are some great links to interesting info graphics in this recent post from Steve Moreby on his Next Starfish blog, such as: The dark side of capitalism and from one earth day to the next

Added by Lorna Prescott on May 19, 2012 at 14:17 — 2 Comments

Slow down you move too fast!

This is an interesting website that gives an added dimension to our culture and passion for 'more now'. Maybe allies in the search for a better future.

There's two books that are interesting too:

Carl Honore (2004) In Praise of Slow- how a worldwide movement is challenging the cult of speed: Orion Books

James Gleick (1999) Faster -…


Added by Bren Cook on May 18, 2012 at 16:20 — 2 Comments

How not to make friends or influence people

"One of the major barriers to building a healthy and thriving civil society is the almost complete withdrawal from community activity of the “natural elite” such as solicitors and City…


Added by Kate Gordon on May 17, 2012 at 9:15 — 3 Comments

HO - consultation on changing equality law

What a pity the government thinks treating people fairly at work is bureaucratic red tape.  I can tell you it's a bigger burden on an employee who's harrassed by third parties than it is for employers!  Obviously, employers can't be expected to police third parties, but if an employee has brought harrassment to their…


Added by Kate Gordon on May 16, 2012 at 14:23 — No Comments

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