Public Sector Focus

15.11.19

Looking ahead with South Tyneside Council

South Tyneside Council leader Iain Malcolm spoke with Emily Rodgers for the new PSE podcast about the council’s green agenda and plans for the future.

Like many UK councils, South Tyneside Council has signed up to the climate emergency agenda and now has officers working on developing more sustainable initiatives for the area.

Much of the council’s green agenda at the moment is centred around recycling, with the amount of waste the area now sent to landfill now in single figures, an ‘astonishing’ difference compared to just a few years ago.

The council also endeavours to plant two or three trees in the borough for every one that needs removing, to ensure consistent regeneration in the area.

A new recycling transfer station in the area, with a solar panelled roof, will be able to handle an extra 12,000 tonnes of blue bin material, resulting in reduced fuel consumption and better control of contamination with an estimated fuel saving of 140 litres per year.

Council leader, Iain Malcolm said:

“Just like any business we should we thinking, within our own operations what can we do to reduce our carbon footprint? In terms of our housing stock, we have 18,500 council houses managed by our own housing company South Tyneside Homes and where we can and where it’s possible, they are all solar panelled as well.”

“Like most councils we’re trying to go as paperless as we can and push the digital agenda by getting all of our council workers to work with people digitally rather than on paper. They are leading by example by getting their agendas online which again, because we’re not using paper, is saving us money and also reducing our carbon footprint”

When asked about his plans for the future, Malcolm was very clear; town centre regeneration is a huge priority. With changing shopping habits and pressures on the high streets, he has ambitious plans called 365 Regeneration to change the face of the town centre.

There is a new bus and metro interchange, and the next phase is a new boulevard and cinema to boost leisure opportunities and meet standards of what the public expect from their town centres.

“Over the past 50 years there has been a move away from the town centre to the suburbs and now what we’re seeing is more town centre living, so that’s part of our regeneration plan too and it will create more footfall to make businesses more confident to move back in to the centre”

“If I can get South Shields embedded as a tourist destination for short stays and get my town centre regenerated, expand the Metro and create new jobs for residents, running alongside all of the statutory things we have to do like adult and children’s care, keeping our streets clean and the following green agenda I think I will be a very happy leader.”

To listen to the full podcast, visit our website.

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