The Public Sector Week

COI boss to quit government comms for top position at the Southbank Centre.

Department for Children, Schools and Families' (DCSF) director of comms Jane Cooper will take the top role at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport in the new year. She replaces Paddy Feeny, who joins the Department of Energy and Climate Change in two weeks (see story above, right). Meanwhile, Caroline Wright will return to DCSF from maternity leave to take over the top comms role.

LGCommunications is holding a seminar on district communications on 12 November in Birmingham. As part of the day, Aylesbury Vale District Council head of comms and marketing Teresa Lane will give a talk on developing a place brand for districts. For more details, visit

Brighton & Hove City Council has launched a campaign to promote the job of urban shepherding. The council has a flock of 60 sheep at Wild Park in the city. The sheep have been introduced as a greener alternative to lawnmowers.

Central Office of Information (COI) chief executive Alan Bishop is leaving government comms to become chief executive at the Southbank Centre. As well as his COI role, Bishop is currently acting permanent secretary for government comms in the place of Howell James while a permanent replacement is sought. The Cabinet Office, which is handling the recruitment process, has shortlisted four candidates for the role of permanent secretary. They will all be seen by a panel of interviewers over the next few weeks.

The House of Lords' inquiry into government communications will be hearing evidence from the minister for the Cabinet Office Liam Byrne on 5 November at 10.30am.

The environment agency has hired Transport for London senior press officer Nathan Fletcher as chief press officer. The Environment Agency recently released a study revealing flows in the Mersey and Severn rivers will be reduced by up to 80 per cent by 2050, and in the Thames by up to half.

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