NG 7 years old

When I first became a Councillor I managed to get onto what looked like an interesting course entitled Next Generation being run by an organization called the Leadership Centre. What was interesting about it was that it was delivered in political group with a parallel track for Conservative, Labour and the Liberals. As it turns out this course is unique in that there is no other local government training which is party political. As the training offer around local government has changed over the years, with the Leadership Centre becoming a part of the LGA and the LGA have changed its programmes and trainers more times than I care to remember, the Next Generation course remains with its original aspiration of training the next generation of Local Government lead members in a political context. It has also retained its original course leader the remarkable Christina Dykes, part organizer of really interesting course sessions, part champion for the aims of the course, the strengths of the Alumni and on occasion strict time keeper particularly in the morning after too many of us have stayed up in the bar the night before talking politics.

Me and Eric, Eric and I - 7 years ago - how time flies!

Me and Eric, Eric and I – 7 years ago – how time flies!

The course is also remarkable in its longevity, it is now in year 8 and each year group, about 20 or so of us, gets to join the alumni. This is now a sizable group of Conservative Councillors in local government and amongst it’s members it has a number of Leaders, former Leaders, deputy Leaders and a lots of Cabinet members for this and that service, spread across the whole of England. In terms of political friends and experience of local politics I have found the original course, follow up meetings, shared experiences and discussions to be the best resource I have come across.

Last Wednesday I attended the Alumni annual get together where the 7 years cohorts of Conservative Councillors come together to discuss local government and anything else that takes our fancy. I can’t believe it was some seven years ago in the bowels of the BIC centre in Bournemouth, that I first met Christina and became a member of its inaugural first year cohort launched with the seal of approval from the then Chairman of the Party Mr. Eric Pickles. The picture on this blog is from that launch where we all had our picture taken with Eric. Mind you both Eric and I had more hair and I think we were both a touch lighter on our toes in those days!

About askcolinnoble
I'm a Conservative politician-lite, I dabble a bit in Party Politics with my main focus of working hard and being a strong voice for my community making sure local government delivers quality services and fellow residents get value for money for their hard earned money they pay in Council tax | Where this Gravatar appears and I am expressing my views or liking something I do so in a personal capacity and does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of Suffolk County Council, Forest Heath District Council, the Conservative Party or come to think of it anyone else | But having said the above at an election time and to stay legal anything I write is promoted by Kerry Buist on behalf of Colin Noble, both at West Suffolk Conservative Association, Unit 8, Swan Lane Business Park, Exning, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 7FN

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