Express & Star

Councils celebrating after local government awards acknowledgement

Councils across the region have been celebrating the news of projects, groups and staff being shortlisted for a national award.

Wolverhampton Council has been shortlisted for two awards

Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton Council have all been shortlisted in different categories in the Local Government Chronicle (LGC) Awards.

The annual LGC Awards recognise outstanding achievements in local government and aim to identify, showcase and celebrate the best examples of innovation and quality delivered by councils on a daily basis.

Sandwell Council has been shortlisted in three categories for the public health award, which has seen two projects shortlisted, outstanding individual contribution award and the rising star award.

The Healthy Ageing App project, which connects with diverse communities in the Sandwell region and helps to develop and integrate English self-care content, and Sandwell Better Mental Health programme, a range of community wellbeing initiatives for Sandwell residents of all ages, have both been shortlisted for the public health awards.

Interim director of public health at Sandwell Council, Liann Brookes-Smith, has been shortlisted for the outstanding individual contribution award, having been nominated for being a compassionate and empathic leader who has shown great resilience and creativity in addressing ongoing and new challenges, including through building on established partnerships.

Sandwell Council have received four shortlistings across three categories

Emily Jayne Morgan, a member of the school improvement and public health team, has been shortlisted for the rising star award, having led on several key areas including personal development, mental health and wellbeing, and poverty proofing.

Councillor Syeda Khatun MBE, cabinet member for public health and communities, said: "I am absolutely thrilled Sandwell Council and its staff have been shortlisted for the LGC Awards.

"To receive one mention in the shortlist is excellent, but it's a real testament to our team and their hard work to be in line for four awards.

"We are making a real difference to people's lives in Sandwell with the work we do and we couldn't do that without the commitment and dedication of our staff.

"We are among some stiff competition in each of the categories and I look forward to hopefully bringing back an award in June when the winners are announced."

Walsall Together has been shortlisted in the health and social care category.

Councillor Keir Pedley, portfolio holder for adult social care at Walsall Council, said, “This is great news for the borough.

"By working together, we achieve far more and Walsall Together is delivering on an ambition to improve the health and happiness of residents through integration.

"It’s a partnership of health, social, housing voluntary and community organisations that is delivering impressive results.

"By using a model based on national and international best practice, Walsall Together has kept more people out of hospital, improved discharge pathways, enhanced care homes support, boosted workforce recruitment and retention, and bolstered community resilience.”

Kerrie Allward, executive director for adult social care at Walsall Council, said, “I’m so proud to hear that we’ve been short-listed for such a prestigious award, and it is testimony to all the hard work undertaken by partners, staff and councillors.

"This award recognises and promotes best practice in this critically important area and to receive national recognition at this level is wonderful news.”

Michelle McManus, director for integrated place based development at Walsall Together, said, “We are absolutely delighted to have been shortlisted for this award.

Walsall Council was acknowledged for its work with Walsall Together

"Health and social care have faced many challenges during the last few years and by working together with our statutory partners and our colleagues in the voluntary and community sector, we have been able to make a real difference to the citizens of Walsall.

"We've put their voices at the heart of what we do and helping them to stay well and out of hospital, reduce inequalities and improving access to services for our most disadvantaged communities.”

Wolverhampton Council has been shortlisted for two awards at this year’s LGC Awards for campaign of the year and health and social care.

In the campaign of the year category, the council has been recognised for its promotion of the innovative Better Health: Rewards pilot in Wolverhampton last year.

The council worked with the Department of Health and Social Care's Office for Health Improvement and Disparities on the pilot, designed to test whether offering people financial incentives would encourage them to make better health and lifestyle choices.

Councillor Jasbir Jaspal, cabinet member for adults and wellbeing, said: "We were pleased to be able to work with the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities to deliver the innovative Better Health: Rewards programme here in Wolverhampton.

“It was amazing to see the tangible benefits it brought to those taking part, and I am delighted that the wide-ranging campaign that helped sign up over 28,000 residents has been shortlisted for an LGC award."

Meanwhile, in the Health and Social Care category, the council and its partners in OneWolverhampton were shortlisted for a project to deliver a winter plan that reduced hospital admissions and ensured people were able to return home at the safest, earliest opportunity.

It saw partners from health and social care take a joint approach to funding, using it in innovative ways to test out new ways of working, such as having dedicated welfare rights and social workers within mental health settings and running bespoke training events with care homes.

Sian Thomas, partnership director for OneWolverhampton, said: “We are really pleased to have been shortlisted for this award.

“As a partnership we have been going from strength to strength and this award is testament to the hard work that has been done to ensure health and care services offered the best possible support for the people of Wolverhampton during the tough winter months.

"This has meant that, as well as reducing hospital admissions, we have been able to help people to return to the place they call home at the safest and earliest opportunity.”

Councillor Stephen Simkins, Leader of Wolverhampton Council, said: "We are delighted to have been shortlisted in two categories at this year’s prestigious LGC Awards.

“This is a great achievement for everybody at the council, and they should feel proud that the positive impact they are having on our city and our residents is being recognised on a national scale.”

To find out more about the LGC Awards 2024, go to

Sorry, we are not accepting comments on this article.