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Corporate Plan 2023 - 2028

Foreword by Leader of the Council

Welcome to our Corporate Plan for 2023-28. This plan sets out the priorities the Council will focus on over the next five years. The identified priority areas will guide the work of the council and sets out our response to what we believe will deliver good outcomes for the people of Gateshead. 

Head shot Image of Cllr Martin Gannon

At this stage the plan sets out the council's view of the world and we anticipate that the plan will evolve and be shaped through consultation and engagement with a range of stakeholders.

We believe 'The strength of Gateshead is the people of Gateshead' because, when faced with adversity - we come together and deliver for one another, working tirelessly for the benefit of the communities of Gateshead, just as we saw throughout the pandemic. We are stronger together and will continue to place people at the heart of everything we do.

Gateshead is unique and different to many other places in the United Kingdom. We are a borough of contrasts, we're two thirds rural and have large expanses of green space. We then have densely populated urban areas and towns. Home to globally recognised icons, such as the Angel of the North, and proud birthplace to the first domestic property in the world to be illuminated by electric light bulb.

We also have different levels of health inequality with life expectancy varying depending upon where you live in the borough. Lives in Gateshead are being cut short. In our poorest areas people's lives are up to 10 years shorter than in our better-off areas. This can be as much as 15 years shorter than the wealthiest parts of England. People in poorer areas also live more of their lives in bad health. This is not right nor should it be acceptable.

Wherever you live or chose to be in Gateshead, we want you to know that the council is relevant to you, it has a role in the life you lead, and that it delivers a good level of service for you.

We provide hundreds of services each day, some of which you'll see and have a direct impact on your life such as bins and local roads, some of which you'll only need when you request it, such as social care. Some people need the council more, others less so. Whenever you do interact with us though, we want it to be a positive interaction or experience. This isn't saying we'll always say yes or respond in the way you want each time. However, when we do reply, there'll be a clear rationale or reason sat behind the decision.

We're a big, complex organisation and recognise that won't always get things right first time. What we can promise to do though, as a learning organisation, is to listen and take on board your feedback and apply improvements along the way.

As a council we continue to work towards a sustainable budget position. In working towards this, it does mean we have a reduced level of budget available to spend on the services deliver, which means that we cannot deliver everything that we used to, or that you might want us to.

We are having to make extremely challenging decisions, but ones that are necessary to ensure we can continue to deliver statutory and essential services for residents. 

We launched Thrive in 2018. This was our approach to ensuring we put people at the heart of everything that we do. Thrive is as relevant today as it was then, whilst recognising that the world in which we operate has changed significantly. Our Corporate Plan is the immediate response to prioritising our offer, and ultimately our available budget, to local people. This plan will evolve, and we will look to engage residents and our partners further in the refinement of this. In doing so, reaffirming our commitment to Gateshead and you.

Councillor Martin Gannon
Leader of the Council

Read more from the Leader in his blog