Worcester is steeped in history, from its founding as a Roman Fort through to it being the site of the final battle of the Civil War in 1651. Today, our 102,000 citizens have a strong and proud association with the City. Whilst we will always respect our heritage, our focus is also on looking forward, ensuring that we search for every opportunity and pull every lever possible to build further on what we have.
The Council has 35 Councillors in total, from 15 wards in the City. Recognising the long history of finely balanced politics within our City, last year we returned to a Committee structure of governance. Our City Plan formulates a shared vision of a future Worcester with five overlapping and interconnected themes, which will together shape the Worcester we want to see by 2021.
The five themes are:
1. Stronger and More Connected Communities
2. A Prosperous City
3. A Healthy and Active City
4. A Heritage City for the 21st Century
5. Sustaining and improving our assets
We want to work in partnership to increase the proportion of high value employment and support entrepreneurship throughout the city. We want people to recognise the beauty of our city and work with us to protect and improve its environment for the benefit of current and future generations, demanding sustainable and sympathetic growth which is in tune with the environment. Read more about the City Plan.
We have a track record of finding new and diverse ways to deliver services, driven by the need for efficiency and economy of scale, often working in partnership with neighbouring councils. At the heart of this is the South Worcestershire Development Plan; however, our Regulatory Services have been part of a countywide service since 2010. We are part of a joint South Worcestershire partnership with Civica for Revenues, Benefits and Customer Services and our leisure services are delivered through a ‘not-for-profit’ Trust.
We have to be ambitious, creative, bold, innovative and resilient in order not just to survive, but to thrive through the current fundamental reforms impacting on local government. We understand the financial challenges facing the sector and through our Medium Term Financial Plan and associated Efficiency Plan (2016-2020) have clear and robust plans in place to ensure our sustainability.
In that context, old ways of working and structures divided by clear boundaries are no longer fit for purpose. While professional expertise remains valuable, our organisational development programme is shaped around a fluid, adaptable and highly skilled workforce where job descriptions are replaced by broadly defined role profiles and our focus is on outcomes, not process. With our new leadership structure, we are marking out a renewed focus on the wellbeing of the community we serve. We want our diverse community to be healthy and well, feeling safe and well housed.
Notwithstanding the many successful partnership arrangements for delivering services, we are bucking the trend for local government with services returning in-house and a significant growth in our directly employed workforce in the last year. Our direction of travel could be described as ‘doing more and getting bigger’.
Our Culture and Values
We employ over 300 people and as a Council, our vision is to “achieve excellence in everything we do”. Our Values are fundamental to empowering our people and enabling us to achieve this vision.