Skip to main content

President's Update

This blog page features updates from ADEPT's President, Mark Kemp.

Latest post

President update 1st August - latest news from ADEPT

The biggest and most exciting ADEPT news this month is of course the launch of Live Labs 2! We have been working closely with the Department for Transport to bring the finer details of the programme together. We hope that ADEPT members have been spreading the word and that you are all considering your applications!  More information below.

Live Labs 2

ADEPT Live Labs 2: Decarbonisation of Local Roads in the UK is ADEPT’s new DfT-funded £30million programme to develop innovation across highways infrastructure and assets. Unlike Live Labs 1, this is a three year programme open to applications from across the UK. Once again, we are looking for ambitious local-authority led partnerships with the private sector, SMEs and academia that will trial new approaches to decarbonisation across the construction, operations, maintenance, and decommissioning phases of the local roads’ life cycle. All the information you need is in the ADEPT Live Labs 2: Decarbonisation of Local Roads in the UK prospectus. For more information, please email [email protected]. You can also read the press release.

Blueprint Coalition

ADEPT is an integral member of the Blueprint Coalition, a group of local government, environmental, and research organisations. This month the Coalition have published an updated summary document to their original Blueprint document and the Blueprint Coalition Position on Levelling Up. The Coalition set out how failing to embed climate and nature recovery into the levelling up agenda is not only a missed opportunity, but also compromises the health, wellbeing, pride of place, education, housing, transport and skills core missions. Read the press release for more information. The Coalition has also provided written evidence to the Levelling Up & Regeneration Bill Committee with the same key messages.

ADEPT working with government

This week, we will be issuing a survey on inflation, supply chain issues and labour shortages on behalf of DfT. This will be a regular survey and we would appreciate your support in providing this vital information.

Working with Defra, ADEPT and the Association of Local Government Ecologists (ALGE) have published a Survey of local planning authorities and their ability to deliver biodiversity net gain in England. The Environment Board recently welcomed Defra to a meeting, where they provided an update on the development of the Third National Adaptation Programme (NAP3) and on Nature Skills from the Green Finance & Green Recovery Division. The Board also welcomed the Office for Environmental Protection who provided an update on the Taking Stock report. This month we have also published the ADEPT response to Defra’s Consultation on preventing charges for DIY waste at household waste recycling centres.

Other news

Hannah and myself have been meeting with our corporate partners. Our partners are a valuable part of ADEPT so hearing from them how they thing we are developing and what they would like to see is always useful. We have also had our annual meeting with the President of LEDNet and had a really productive meeting with the new Chair of the Chartered Institution of Highways & Transportation.

The Excellence in Place Leadership Programme (EiPL), which this year has been focused on the levelling up agenda, has just published its summary on session 3 - Establishing collaborative partnerships are key to successfully delivering levelling up. James Crosbie, Assistant Director of Planning, Transport & Public Protection, Reading Borough Council provides the accompanying blog. The EiPL team will also be running the next Lunch & Learn Session on 23rd September. Find out more about The Levelling Up Challenge – transforming the tensions between productivity, prosperity and people across the UK here.

In a departure from our normal Climate Change blog this month, we have a piece from Dean Sargeant, Director - Neighbourhood & Enforcement Services, Telford & Wrekin Council, which has just been named MJ Council of the Year 2022.

For those of you about to embark on summer leave, I hope you have a well earnt break!

As ever you can find out more about ADEPT’s latest news, publications and the work of our boards and groups on the website:


Mark Kemp, President of ADEPT

More posts

  • President update 1st April - latest news from ADEPT

    This is my first blog as new ADEPT President, so for people who don’t know me, I’m Mark Kemp, Executive Director of Environment and Transport at Hertfordshire County Council.

    Before I begin the latest ADEPT news, I just want to say thank you to our new Immediate Past President, Paula Hewitt for all the work, good humour and resourcefulness she brought to her Presidency. Paula will be staying on as part of the Leadership Team, so I look forward to her continued input and support.

    Read more >

  • President update: 29th April 2022

    As you may know, ADEPT recently had some fantastic news. The government announced the go-ahead for Live Labs 2 with £30m funding from the Department for Transport. The new expanded programme, Live Labs 2: Decarbonising Local Roads will run for three years and include projects from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Focused on the decarbonisation of transport infrastructure, we will take the same approach to applications using a ‘Dragon’s Den’ style, but with funding available to successful applicants to support both development and procurement stages.

    Read more >

  • President update: 1st April 2022

    After two long years of COVID-19, local authorities are again dealing with the multiple crises that are facing our communities and affecting our ability to deliver services. Amongst the Leadership Team, we have had long conversations about the impacts of rising fuel costs, the Homes for Ukraine scheme, the ongoing lack of school transport drivers, hyper-inflation driving up costs on delivery of council services, and most urgently, on local communities. 

    Read more >

  • President update: 28th February 2022

    While much of the world is rightly focused on the situation in Ukraine, closer to home we have come to the end of all formal Covid-19 restrictions. This is not the same as being the end of the pandemic, so we will all be discovering what living with coronavirus means. Of course, for local authorities, this also marks the end of Covid-related funding support, so many of our colleagues in public health will be focused now only on the most vulnerable in our communities.

    Read more >

  • President update: 1st February 2022

    Welcome to the first President update in 2022 – slightly later than usual and while Paula’s on leave, this time coming from our Chief Executive Officer, Hannah Bartram.

    Read more >

  • President update: 17th December 2021

    As we head into the Christmas break, the rapid spread of Omicron leaves many of us with a sense of weary familiarity. Fears of last minute changes to Christmas plans at home and impacts on services at work remind us of how much we continue to live with uncertainty.

    Read more >

  • President update: 29th November 2021

    This month, the focus has been very firmly on climate change (and not just the ADEPT Autumn Conference!), with widespread agreement that this is the ‘decade of action’ and we need to work together, urgently, to find solutions.

    COP26 had a varied response - many positive pledges and commitments were made, including the announcement to end deforestation, agreements to bring forward green innovation in agriculture, promoting more sustainable land management practices, and the focus on rewiring national and international finance systems for net zero. 

    Read more >

  • President update: 28th October 2021

    It feels like déjà vu, and not for the first time, that as Covid rates climb, the government is resisting calls to implement even the lightest of restrictions. Local authorities are once again in the position of seeing rates rise in their local areas, but without that vital national backing that brings weight to any precautions they might want to put in place.

    Read more >

  • President update: 30th September 2021

    The news is full of the effects of HGV driver shortages across the UK, something that many local authorities have felt for some time. Our waste services have been particularly hit by shortages, and as we look ahead to winter, we are all concerned with how gritting services and their essential role in safety and accident prevention might be impacted. Some authorities are also feeling the impact on passenger transport, particularly school bus provision.

    Read more >

Media enquiries: please contact Coast Communications 01579 352600 | VAT number: 337 0556 05 | Website by Cosmic