9 Nov 2017
Excellence has been recognised at Aylesbury Vale District Council (AVDC) with the authority being shortlisted for three separate awards at the Local Government Chronicle (LGC) Awards, which recognise the best in local government.
The winners will be announced at the awards ceremony on 21 March 2018 at Grosvenor House on London’s Park Lane, which will be attended by 1,100 people from local government and its partner organisations.
The three award categories in which AVDC has been shortlisted are Digital Council of the Year, Innovation, and Team of the Year.
Councillor Neil Blake, Leader of AVDC, said: “To be shortlisted for one award is an achievement in itself, but to be shortlisted for three is simply fantastic and is testament to the hard work going on here at AVDC. Whilst we’d love to win all three, ultimately we’re not here to win awards; we’re here to provide the Vale with the services it needs, now and in the future. Being recognised by the LGC in this way is a big thumbs-up to me that we’re heading in the right direction, and I’m immensely proud of all our staff and thankful for their great work.”
The Digital Council of the Year Award submission detailed the council’s ongoing digital transformation, with a special focus on the exciting growth of AI technology to better serve customer queries. During the summer, AVDC received official accreditation from Amazon for its Amazon Echo (Alexa) skills, which enable residents to access certain council services through voice control technology.
The Innovation Award submission focused on the Vale Lottery, the first council-run community lottery in the country. Since launching in 2015, it has generated over £120,000 for 170 good causes throughout the Vale. Furthermore, the lottery has become a commercial asset for AVDC, providing income through consultancy work, which sees the council implementing the scheme for other local authorities from around the UK. The income generated through these sales is then reinvested within the council to support key services.
Thirdly, the Team of the Year Award submission regards the hard work of AVDC’s collection crews. It focused on their excellent track record over the last year and their drive to provide great customer service - in spite of an internal restructure and wholesale changes to their working patterns. The submission was strengthened further by the triumph of the council’s team at the National Waste Championships in June 2017. AVDC’s team was crowned champions after beating stiff competition from collection crews from around the country in a series of challenges which tested their skill and teamwork.