Mutualisation and co-operative councils: a workshop with the Cabinet Office

In November 2013 the Cooperative Councils Innovation Network facilitated an expert workshop in partnership with the Cabinet Office’s Mutuals Team, looking at new delivery models for public services and the potential for mutualisation. The workshop focused on:

  • Discussing the Government’s mutualisation agenda and support available from the Cabinet Office mutual team
  • Providing tangible examples and sharing experiences from Cooperative Councils currently receiving Cabinet Office support and/or considering mutualisation.
  • Providing the opportunity for debate and sharing of issues and approaches.
  • Discussing the Community Right to Challenge and issues/opportunities in respect of mutualisation.

See below for videos of the various presentations that were given.

Link to Cabinet Office Mutuals Information Service

Cabinet Office – The mutuals agenda in the UK

Scarlett Archer spoke about the Government’s mutualisation agenda and the support the Cabinet Office Mutuals Team provides.


City of York – Mutualising City of York’s Libraries and Archives service

Cllr James Alexander, Leader of City of York Council, spoke about pursuing the mutuals option for York’s Libraries and Archives service, and the support received from the Cabinet Office’s mutual support programme. This was supported by external funding secured through the Heritage Lottery Fund. The council has worked with staff and service users to set up a community benefit society.


Oldham – Establishing an arms length social care provider

Danielle Proctor, Managing Director of Oldham Care and Support/Oldham Care and support at Home, spoke about Oldham’s experience of the Cabinet Office’s Mutuals Support Programme, focusing specifically on growth, finance models, market testing and business planning.


Plymouth – education and public service mutualisation

Heather Morris, Curriculum Manager for Education, Learning and Families, spoke about achieving stakeholder engagement through finding links between public service mutualisation and the strategic vision of Plymouth’s Cooperative Councils agenda.


Questions and Answers: what next for the mutuals agenda?

Following the presentations, participants discussed public service mutuals agenda, and the opportunities and challenges that it raises for cooperative councils.