Thursday, 29 July 2010

The Big Society explained...


Ministers have today written to voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations asking for their ideas on how to reduce the deficit.

Minister for Civil Society, Nick Hurd, said:

"We know that it is local people and organisations on the ground that often know what needs changing and we want to tap into their knowledge and experience to help us identify ways of doing things better and more efficiently so we can do more for less."


But what's this?

At almost exactly the same time that this exciting announcement was made what should drop into The Fact Compiler's inbox but the following missive from the Association of Community and Rail Partnerships:

As you are possibly already aware, our quarterly publication Train Times is currently suffering under the embargo placed upon government department publications (as it is currently funded entirely by the DfT). We are exploring ways of funding Train Times otherwise but it has become apparent that any solution will not come in time to allow us to maintain our normal schedule.

So here, in place of Train Times 59, which we would still hope to produce at some stage in the future, is Train in Between Times in which we cover the various news stories which would have appeared in TT59 had it appeared on schedule.

TiBT will not appear in printed form – this is it!

Feel free to distribute it far and wide. It’s also on our website.
(Not yet it's not - but here is a link to their publications page for when it is. Ed)

Clearly there is a saving to the Department in no longer funding a hard-copy version of Train Times.

However, without Train Times, how can ACoRP effectively seek ideas from the voluntary members of Community Rail Partnerships about how to reduce costs on the railway?

No doubt the ORR and Sir Roy McNulty have already consulted all the 60+ community rail partnerships and rail promotion groups that form ACoRP's membership....

Strange train times indeed!