Welcome to the East Suffolk Partnership

East Suffolk Partnership celebrates another successful forum

The East Suffolk Partnership’s annual Forum celebrated its biggest Forum to date on Friday 11 November at the Trinity Park Conference Centre, Bucklesham. 

The theme of this year’s conference was ‘the future of east Suffolk’ and attracted a wide variety of delegates from local businesses, Town and Parish councils, voluntary organisations, health services, the police, local councils, and education. The event focussed on providing a ‘time out’ from our continually changing world to look towards the future of east Suffolk and posed to delegates how to take advantage of the emerging opportunities and challenges.

The aim of the conference was to help build better partnership working in east Suffolk, allowing the delegates the opportunity to meet members of the East Suffolk Partnership Board and hear about progress in developing a collaborative approach to working across east Suffolk. Once again, the events were supported by Suffolk Coastal and Waveney District Councils and the East of England LGA.

The decision to focus on ‘the future of east Suffolk’ this year was because the event comes at a really significant time for us all, as we are increasingly seeking to collaborate in our delivery of local activities and services at all levels. This is particularly pertinent for Suffolk Coastal and Waveney District Councils, who are seeking to create a new ‘super district’ council for east Suffolk.

The key note speakers for this year’s forum were Stephen Baker, Chief Executive of Suffolk Coastal and Waveney District Councils, Stephen Javes, Chief Executive of Orwell Housing and Chairman of Community Action Suffolk, and Roger Wright, Chief Executive of Aldeburgh Music who spoke about their vision for the future of east Suffolk.

Colin Law, Chairman of the East Suffolk Partnership, said: “Once again, we were fully booked today, which I think, says a lot about the culture of collaboration we have here in east Suffolk.

This Forum continues to be the perfect platform to bring individuals, partners and organisations together to think about the future and how we can prosper in these changing times and the ESP is just one important mechanism by which we can deliver positive action on them.

The ESP is constantly evolving to reflect the changing economic climate in which we operate – and I am sure we will continue to evolve in the future. What is constant, though, is the impact we can have by coming together to tackle the issues that matter to the people of east Suffolk.”

The outcomes from the workshops are being collated and will be discussed by the ESP Board on 14 December to help shape future activity.

The East Suffolk Partnership (ESP) came into being on 1 April 2012 after a review of the Suffolk Coastal and Waveney Local Strategic Partnerships recognised the benefit of working together across East Suffolk.

The ESP is a non statutory, non executive organisation that brings together organisations from the public, business, community and voluntary sectors to support each other and work together to achieve common priorities. The ESP operates at a level which enables strategic decisions that affect East Suffolk and also drive delivery of projects and initiatives at a relatively local level. The ESP is aligned with the district boundaries of Suffolk Coastal and Waveney.

To help make sense of the interconnected agendas of public sector reform, growth, and localism the ESP commissioned a State of East Suffolk report along with more in depth intelligence gathering and discussions on the key issues in the reports. As a result the ESP has identified the following five key areas that represent their primary business although many of the underlying issues are interconnected and demand a collaborative approach to address them successfully.

  • Build on economic prosperity, growth and infrastructure development
  • Ensure people have the skills to meet employment opportunities
  • Encourage a growing, ageing population to live well
  • Build strong communities and reduce inequalities in health, housing, and crime
  • Improve lives through environmental action

To deliver on its priorities the ESP Board oversees a rolling programme of work focused on specific issues. Detailed work to deliver the outcomes is coordinated through a work programme managed by the ESP Programme Officer Group between meetings of the Board.

The ESP has a key role to influence and change the way resources are allocated within East Suffolk. Increasingly the ESP is also taking a more proactive role in drawing additional funding into East Suffolk: from the relatively small amounts that the East Suffolk Resource Network can help local communities groups to access, through to significant amounts that the ESP is well placed to attract as an established partnership with good networks.


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