The Community Development Foundation (CDF) undertook research on behalf of Local Trust to identify what is influencing the progress of Big Local areas. The research, undertaken in 2014-15, aims to help Big Local areas across the country make progress and inform the support provided to them by Local Trust and its partners.
The research involved visits and interviews to 15 Big Local areas and a survey sent
to key residents in all 150 Big Local areas. There was evidence that some areas
are starting to meet the aims of the Big Local programme, namely:
No matter what stage a Big Local area is at, whether they are getting started,
preparing a plan or delivering a plan, there are three main challenges which
hinder their progress:
Possible solutions to these issues are detailed in the report, including:
Though the Big Local journey may be challenging, particularly in terms of getting people
involved, there is evidence of increasing awareness, engagement and involvement from the wider community. Residents are identifying the needs of their community and taking action in response to them through the support of those around them. This support includes other residents, the rep, the locally trusted organisation, local organisations and, quite often, a worker. Residents are growing in skills and confidence to increasingly take the lead in Big Local and remain very committed to it. This is because of their continued passion to make a difference to their area and make it an even better place for all who live there.