Saturday, 6 June 2009

New Civic Society Movement Launched

The new Civic Society Initiative will be a National Voice for a Local Movement says Laura

The civic society movement was boosted on Monday by the launch of an initiative to strengthen its network of over 1,000 voluntary civic and amenity societies and 250,000 members. The Civic Society Initiative was launched by Griff Rhys Jones in London’s Covent Garden, scene of a successful civic society campaign against a damaging six lane road scheme in the 1970s.

Laura Sandys spoke at the launch saying “This new initiative will provide a National Voice for a Local Movement, providing civic societies with support in their locality, and a strong presence nationally.”

“I am passionate about our civic societies around Kent, particularly in Thanet and Sandwich. I urge our civic Societies across Kent to support and respond to the new organisation and contribute their ideas to how and what this National Organisation should aim to achieve. This is a time of change where the need for local action and democracy is greater than ever and the Civic Movement can be at the heart of that change.”

The Civic Society Initiative is being funded and supported by the National Trust, North of England Civic Trust, Campaign to Protect Rural England, and Royal Institute of British Architects among others. It will work with local societies and other community groups to develop a strong champion for civic societies and a network of support that makes their collective voice stronger still.
Speaking at the launch, Griff Rhys Jones said:

“The need for a vibrant civic society movement is greater than ever before and we are enormously grateful to the organisations that have rallied round with offers of financial and practical help. With the right support we can build a movement to support and champion community action for local places that is stronger than ever.”

Tony Burton said:

“With conventional politics on the rocks, the time is ripe for a rebirth of local democracy which champions the importance of places for people. We urge all those who care for the place where they live to get involved and keep in touch at”

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