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 0303 123 1702

Allerdale Borough Council,
Allerdale House,
Workington,
Cumbria,
CA14 3YJ

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News release

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Satisfaction levels with Council services at a record high

27 November 2014

Allerdale Borough Council has received its highest scores yet in a survey designed to measure residents’ quality of life.

Overall satisfaction with the services provided by the Council has jumped to 74% - a rise of 25% on 2012 and 35 % on 2008. Satisfaction with the borough as a place to live has increased from 78% to 84%, with those living in Cockermouth and Keswick scoring even more highly at 95%. The results for other areas range from Silloth at 90% to Maryport where more than three quarters of residents (76%) said they were satisfied with their area as a place to live.

Councillor Alan Smith, Leader of Allerdale Borough Council, said: “It’s fantastic that nearly three quarters of our residents rate us so highly, though we know there is always more work to do. It’s particularly good to see these scores have still increased despite the fact we’ve been under such tight financial constraints.

“The full report shows that people want us to focus on core services like bins, car parking and street cleaning, but they’ve also told us they want us to invest in the big picture – particularly economic development and job creation. That’s why these surveys are so important. We need to know what we’re doing well or badly, but we also want them to guide our future priorities.”

In terms of the survey’s detail, 92% of people said they were satisfied with the weekly refuse collection and 79% with the doorstep recycling service – both up 2% since the 2012 survey. Overall satisfaction with other services, such as household waste recycling sites (84%), parks and open spaces (73%), sports (46%) and car parking (44%), have also risen since 2012. There has also been an increase in those feeling informed about Council services, from 51% in 2012 to 74% today.

Attitudes to council tax and budgets were mixed. 40% of respondents agreed that Allerdale Borough Council provides value for money, a similar figure to that in 2012, and 57% were prepared to see a rise in council tax if this meant that services would be protected. When asked, 74% of respondents felt informed about the council’s work, a rise of 23% on 2012.

When asked about priorities and areas for improvement, health services and levels of crime were highlighted as issues most important for people (45%). Roads (51%) and job prospects (36%) were identified as the issues which most need improving, and there was a fall of 16% to 46% in those respondents who were satisfied with efforts made to keep the borough free from litter.

When asked about reducing costs, 90% of respondents said that if the Council needed to make savings then ‘working in partnership with others’ was the best option. Three-quarters said the Council should provide ‘better services, but less of them’ for example, providing two public toilets in a town instead of four. This was closely followed by ‘differentiating between residents and visitors’ when setting charges (64%) and ‘making services operate commercially’ (58%).  41% thought that we should move services online and away from face-to-face contacts.

More than half of those completing the survey requested more involvement in economic development (56%), as well as street cleaning (42%), public toilets (37%) and car parks (35%). The three areas people thought the Council should give less emphasis to are festivals and arts (41%), museums (40%) and benefits advice (34%).

The complete survey report is due to go before a meeting of the Executive in December.

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0303 123 1702

Allerdale Borough Council
Allerdale House, Workington, Cumbria,
CA14 3YJ