Home > Uncategorized > Cameron’s Big Society in Ayrshire is Failing

Cameron’s Big Society in Ayrshire is Failing


Much has been made about Cameron’s Big Society. I’ve never known what to make of it, until now. Some people have failed to understand what Cameron means by the Big Society & everytime i would think of his big society, i would think of a local partnership of business men & women in Ayr banding together to raise money and to set in place a financial model that will allow the Gaiety Theatre which was closed by the council in early 2009 to reopen its doors.

This seemed to be what Cameron meant by his big society, local men and women gathering together to try and run a local service. They seemed to be doing well but this week the problems with getting the Gaiety up and running have become public knowledge for the first time with not just the chairman of the Gaiety partnership resigning but 6 directors of the partnership. The chairman Ian Brown released a public statement in the local newspaper apologising to the community that he was unable to get the council to hand over the keys. Ian blamed the council for not going with the agreed business plan put forward by the partnership and commissioning plans for their own designs, wasting valuable public money.

It looks like the Gaiety will not reopen at all, unless someone can persuade the council to hand over the keys. If this is what Cameron meant by the Big Society can it ever work, if councils are refusing to hand over to local community groups? This is a Tory council as well so in theory, they should be on board with their leader’s Big Society project.

If David Cameron wants his Big Society to pay off, he needs to get councils on board & if he wants this society to be a UK one & not an English one, he needs to get Scottish councils on board as well.

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. April 11, 2011 at 19:45

    What is the Big Society? Nothing. At best, a badly thought out idea; at worst a pathetic soundbite. The idea of smaller government interfering less is perfectly good, but Cameron’s model of the Big Society doesn’t actually do anything to genuinely empower communities. His vision suffers from a lack of joined-up thinking and a practical strategy.

    As you’re finding out in Aryshire, the BS isn’t going to solve Scotland’s problems, be they local or national. It can’t work on a top-down basis but only by co-operation between couincils, charities and voluntary organisations.

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