• Applicant: Diane Sims
  • Funding agree: £500

Event details:

Notwestminster is two days of workshops, conversations, quick-fire talks, practical collaboration and inspiration in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire.

It’s a free event for everyone who has something positive to say about local democracy and anyone who is up for the challenge of making it better. Their aim is to create a stronger local democracy, wherever we are. We’ll be releasing our free tickets in three batches, the first of which will be available during Local Democracy Week.

Local government officers, digital makers, open data champions, activists, councillors, academics, democratic organisations and young people all participate in Notwestminster.

It’s this mix of people, all with enthusiasm for finding practical ways to improve our local democracy, that makes it a unique, productive and inspiring event.

This year they will be holding our first “Democracy Experiments Day”, to come up with practical experiments that participants can try out where they live or work. They will also be holding a PechaKucha Night and Curry on the Friday, plus our main event on the Saturday.

Notwestminster 2017 will be at the Media Centre in Huddersfield on Friday 10th and Saturday 11th February 2017.

You can find out more at: https://notinwestminster.wordpress.com/notwestminster-2017/

Funding will be used for: To cover basic costs, such as food and refreshments for 80 participants on the Saturday, and for up to 50 participants on the Friday.

Once we have raised enough to cover these basic costs, we would like to be able to introduce an extra Notwestminster creative activity in The Making Space, which is a co-operatively-run, collaborative studio space at our venue.

We’d also like to be able to cover the travel costs of community participants if needed.

About the organiser: Diane a community activist, digital practitioner and local democracy advocate. For her, local democracy is about being able to get things done where you live, having a voice, and being connected to decision-making processes. It’s also about the personal relationships between citizens and elected representatives. She believes that good things can happen when people are open to working together, and she’s thrilled to have got to know and work with many inspiring people since their first Notwestminster event in February 2015. She wants to make sure that we continue to strengthen those relationships and to connect more people through our network.

She’s currently working on a range of democracy projects for Kirklees Council, including their New Councillor Programme to support councillors in their changing role, and the Kirklees Democracy Commission, working with citizens to shape what a strong and healthy local democracy should look like, for the next generation and beyond. She’s run a series of roadshows where citizens have shared ideas, questions and concerns about local democracy, and at the moment they’re holding a series of public inquiries, putting some of those questions to a key witnesses. It’s a significant, thought-provoking, challenging and inspiring piece of work that she’s keen to share with Notwestminster participants. She’s also keen to have the opportunity to hear what people are doing elsewhere.

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