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Jun 24 2011

Harrow named Best Achieving Council

Harrow was named the Best Achieving Council in the UK at the prestigious MJ Awards in London last night (23rd June), which recognise outstanding performance in local government.

A panel of distinguished judges chose Harrow for delivering ‘sustained and embedded change, using a modern approach to doing business but never losing sight of its priorities, namely its residents.’

They added, ‘Its political and managerial leaders showed both maturity and professionalism and their sense of passion and pride for Harrow is tangible.’

The award, the premier prize of the evening, was presented by Alastair Campbell, columnist and former head of communications at Downing Street .

The annual MJ Awards are organised by the Municipal Journal magazine, which is the leading weekly magazine for local authorities.

The Council’s legal department was also highly commended in the Excellence in Legal Services Achievement of the Year category.

Cllr Bill Stephenson, Leader of Harrow Council, said:

“Working together with residents and the entire community, we are transforming Harrow Council to improve the services our residents rely on and deliver the savings that government cuts demand.

“We are incredibly proud to receive this recognition from the MJ and it is a tribute to our staff, who work so hard for people in Harrow .

“There is an awful lot more to do and this award will provide extra motivation as we work together with the community to find solutions to the challenges ahead.”

Michael Lockwood, chief executive of Harrow Council, said:

“Our primary aim is to deliver excellent services to Harrow residents and I am immensely proud that the judges have recognised our achievements.

“We have made enormous progress, improving performance while delivering significant savings and I congratulate and pay credit to every member of staff for the hard work and dedication in making this happen.

“This award will spur us on in what is a very challenging time for local government, and as the judges recognised, Harrow residents will remain our top priority.”

Chief Supt Dal Babu, Harrow ‘s police borough commander, said:

“I am absolutely ecstatic that Harrow Council has won the MJ Award for being the best council in the UK . I and my staff have worked very closely with the Council and its partners. This award is richly deserved.

“We look forward to continuing this excellent partnership and to delivering this service to the community in Harrow ”

The award judges were Helen Bailey, chief executive of Local Partnerships, Sir Bob Kerslake, permanent secretary at the DCLG, Kim Ryley, chief executive of Shropshire Council and president of SOLACE, and Julie Towers, managing director, Recruitment Solutions at Penna, sponsor of the category.

Other finalists for the best achieving council award were Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council, Cornwall Council, Fenland District Council, Teignbridge District Council and Wakefield City Council.

Source(s): Harrow Council website.

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