Public sector news in brief

CAMPBELL: Local authority senior comms staff attended the Belfry in Solihull last week to listen to the words of Number 10’s former director of communications and strategy Alastair Campbell. The talk focused on how to build strategic communications and how to hang on to it in the middle of a crisis. The 18 delegates also looked at Campbell’s case studies.

REDBRIDGE: LG Communications has elected Redbridge London Borough Council head of corporate comms and marketing Maxine Thorne as chairman at its annual general meeting. She replaces the outgoing chairman Martin Watkins, head of comms at Staffordshire County Council.

ENVIRONMENT: The London mayoral office is promoting Real Nappy

Week to encourage parents to switch from disposable to reusable cloth nappies in a bid to cut the amount of waste that goes to landfill. The themed week is part of a wider ongoing campaign co-ordinated by the Women’s Environmental Network and the issue features in the Government’s Waste Implementation Programme.

LANCASHIRE: Lancashire County Council has found itself in the middle of a spat over allegations of political bias in its civic newsletter. The publication is accused by some MPs of campaigning against an elected regional assembly, an allegation which it has strongly denied.

BEXLEY: Children in the London Borough of Bexley are to benefit from a helping hand from the sports field after Premiership footballers from Charlton Athletic came forward to help promote healthy lifestyles at schools in the district. The scheme includes sessions on nutrition, exercise and dental care. Health education sessions have been devised by members of the Bexley Healthy Schools Programme Partnership and the Charlton Athletic Community Scheme.

HEALTHCARE: The Health Development Agency has asked the NHS to change its messages to patients about fitness following research that found 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day can cut the risk of heart disease in half. Doctors are being asked to recommend modest increases in activity in people’s day-to-day routines rather than encourage them to go to the gym. The agency wants doctors to speak to their patients about activity as often as they do about smoking.

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