Monday, December 18, 2017


There are times when you can get the feeling that our communities have been regenerated to death. Don’t get me wrong, regeneration; if it is done right can bring real and potentially long lasting benefits to many of our hard-pressed communities. It is important that regeneration is a process rather than an event and that is done for people rather than to people and does not end up simply enriching the regeneration professionals instead of our communities.  The unwritten rule should be if you are going to spend public money then you need to work the money exceptionally hard to ensure that every possible benefit is extracted. There is a real need to ensure that any bodies set up to spend public money are democratically accountable and are established after a wide ranging accessible consultation process. To most people this should all sound pretty reasonable and sensible stuff, but it has often been to easily overlooked. The danger is that many of our local authorities simply perceive ‘regeneration’ as a means to accessing additional public monies rather than bringing meaningful beneficial change too many of our communities. Hand in hand with this concerning trend, in recent years there has been a disturbing tendency to effectively seriously marginalise any real community real involvement in the regeneration process, something that undermines the very objective of community based regeneration.

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