President's Update

This blog page will feature regular updates from ADEPT's President, Nigel Riglar.

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President update: 15th September

15 September 2020

The rising number of coronavirus cases and the R number increasing to between 1 and 1.2 are obviously concerning, particularly in the northern areas of England and the Midlands and have prompted the Government to introduce the new ‘rule of six’ guidance. The Prime Minister’s introduction of Covid Marshalls took many of us by surprise with more details due out this week. One of the most pressing issues for us of course, is how they will be funded.

So far, the return to school has posed few problems for school transport. I think it’s fair to say we were all holding our breath, but early indications suggest that the systems we have put in place are working well. However, we are aware of emerging issues and are asking the Government to support the financial viability of coach operators who have not received the same levels of support as bus operators. We are also asking for clarification on funding for tree pruning and the management of trees which pose a hazard to double decker buses. 

Last week we published the ADEPT E-scooters policy position, setting out how we think e-scooters can be taken forward safely and contribute to the net zero target, particularly in first mile / last mile of regular journeys. We will be asking members participating in e-scooter rental trials to feedback through the Transport & Connectivity Board and support members to weave e-scootering into active travel, climate emergency action plans, and local cycling and walking improvement plans. We are also asking government to support this work with prompt action and to review finding for all active travel modes and include e-scootering.

We are currently drafting our Comprehensive Spending Review submission, setting out our key asks across BEIS, Defra, DfT and MHCLG. We are continuing to work on submissions for the Planning for the Future consultation, the revised Waste Management Plan for EnglandReview of the Highway Code, and Pavement Parking. Finally, we highlighted the ash dieback issue in our response to the consultation on the draft England Tree Strategy, and the huge financial implications for highways and place. 

The Live Labs programme is continuing at pace, with project teams now firmly in the trials stage. Please keep an eye on the Live Labs blog and follow @ADEPTLiveLabs for news on the work coming out of each project. The first Live Labs White Paper - Mobilising an Innovation Programme is due for publication soon and the team is putting together a comms workshop for early next month. 

Version 4 of the Covid-19 HSC Safe Operating procedures for highways maintenance guidance has been published and is available on the ADEPT website here

Looking ahead, we have been working hard on the ADEPT conference (November 5th - 6th). More detailed government guidance on conference management in light of Covid-19 is expected before 1st October, but as it stands, this year it will be a hybrid event, meaning people can attend in person or participate virtually. The speakers and workshops will all be live-streamed in high-definition, with delegates taking part in question & answer sessions through Find out more about the conference programme and sign up here

On the same page you can also find out more about this year’s National Traffic Managers’ Virtual Conference on 7th October, which is a completely online event. ADEPT is a partner of this year’s LGC Climate Change 2020 Conference at the end of this week (17th - 18th September). Again, this one is a virtual event, and you can find out more here. Finally, Radioactive Waste Management Ltd (RWM), are hosting a webinar - Supporting low carbon futures through major infrastructure development - for ADEPT members 3 - 4:30 on 29th September. To sign up or find out more, please email [email protected].

As always, keep watching our COVID-19 updates page for the latest ADEPT news.

More posts

  • 1 September 2020

    President update: 1st September

    Managing the reopening of schools to all students has provided many challenges, not only for the Government and schools themselves, but also for place directors. We have been working out how we can ensure pupils can travel to and from schools safely using public transport, which has been a massive issue for ADEPT members, and most keenly felt by those outside more urban areas.

    Read more >

  • 31 July 2020

    President update: 31st July

    The news has been concerning this week, with the reintroduction of some lockdown measures across areas in the north of England, as well as the requirement to quarantine for travellers returning from Spain. The measures serve to highlight that coming out of lockdown is not an easy process, and with increases in cases across Europe, a reminder of how connected we are with our friends.

    Read more >

  • 20 July 2020

    President's Update

    Local government yet again finds itself facing an uncertain future with even less certain budgets. There has been much coverage of the Public Accounts Committee report which has outlined risks and issues with increasing commercial investments and borrowing across councils, and how Covid-19 has led to a shortfall in expected income.

    Read more >

  • 8 July 2020

    President update: 8th July

    It was interesting to listen to the chancellor’s summer statement, which outlined some important new investment that will have an impact on clean and green growth. The investment into infrastructure, the £3bn green jobs plan and the £2bn Green Homes Grant, will all help to drive a green recovery. In particular, retrofitting homes is vital for communities and the wider built environment – it not only reduces carbon emissions, it also builds resilience to future climate change, reduces fuel poverty and improves health.

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  • 1 July 2020

    President update: 1st July

    The Prime Minister’s much trailed announcement of a New Deal wasn’t the once-in-a-generation, green and clean recovery many had hoped for. Some of the funding had been announced before, just with a speeding up of delivery timescales, but investment in broadband and cycleways is welcome. ADEPT would like to see more ambitious thinking from government.

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  • 24 June 2020

    President update: 24th June

    As the Government opens up the economy further and reduces the 2m rule to ‘1m plus’, local high streets begin to see a welcome influx of visitors becoming more confident in returning to town centres, and a slow shift into a more normal life.

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  • 17 June 2020

    President update: 17th June

    This week marks the beginning of a significant time for our high streets with many shops allowed to reopen, but with strict social distancing in place. We will be watching closely how the public reacts over the coming weeks to get an idea of how safe our communities feel about returning to the shops. It’s a major concern for all place directors who need to ensure their communities feel confident and that their local economies can restart. For retail businesses, it is also a critical point as they work out how they can continue to operate with a reduced footfall. 

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  • 9 June 2020

    President update: 9th June

    My first week as ADEPT President has been a busy one. I never thought my first big role would be to don the Lycra, get on my bike and do an interview with BBC’s Countryfile, but that’s exactly what I did. Never say ADEPT isn’t without surprises.

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  • 29 May 2020

    President update: 29th May

    Hello everyone. 

    I’m Nigel Riglar and I’m ADEPT’s President for the coming 12 months. Firstly, I want to thank Darryl for a fantastic year, which has seen ADEPT continue to grow and expand its work supporting members, increasing influence as well as working on the challenges of climate change, Brexit planning and now Covid-19.

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  • 20 May 2020

    President update: 20th May

    With ADEPT’s Spring Conference this week, this is my last update as President. It’s been a fantastic year, even with small matters such as a prorogued government, general election, widespread winter floods then a global pandemic taking over my final few months. For Nigel, COVID-19 will shape his entire Presidency and I offer him my full support as he takes on what will be a very challenging year ahead for ADEPT members.

    Read more >