West Berkshire Council

Start date: 2018-11-12
End date: 2018-12-23
Results: 2019-03-05

Budget Proposal 2019/20: Get Berkshire Active

This consultation is closed.


This is one of 14 budget proposals for 2019/20. You can view the full list online.

You can also view budget consultations from previous years.

This is a consortium project headed by Get Berkshire Active which includes the following organisations Alzheimer's Society, Berkshire Vision, Mencap, Newbury Community Resource Centre and Age UK. The work of this consortium involves supporting older people, vulnerable adults, including the visually impaired, those who are socially isolated and individuals with dementia.  Activities of the consortium includes support into employment, home visits, cooking, gardening and social clubs and physical activity sessions.

Within the project, there is a physical activity service for older people called Ever Active. This service aims to deliver community based physical activity opportunities for older people in West Berkshire seeking to improve their health, fitness and wellbeing.

134 people used the Ever Active service during the last year.

We currently provide Get Berkshire Active with annual funding of £90,641 for the whole project.

Legislation requirements

The Care Act 2014 sets out duties relating to people with care and support needs.  This includes duties relating to a range of eligible needs and their relationship with individuals' wellbeing.  It also sets out duties relating to the prevention of future care and support needs.

The commissioning of healthy lifestyle services is discretionary, guided by the Public Health Outcomes Framework, the local Joint Strategic Needs Assessment and the joint pdf icon Health and Wellbeing Strategy [2Mb].

What are we proposing?

To reduce the annual funding to Get Berkshire Active (Community Based Leisure and Recreational Activities programme) from £90,641 to £50,641 (a saving of £40,000 or 44%) when the current contract ends on 31 March 2019.

We propose that we will commission a new re shaped service that which will continue to provide some community based leisure and recreational activities. However, physical activity specifically for older people will no longer be funded as part of this service.

What do we think the impact will be?

The reduction in funding is likely to reduce the scale of some current activities.  We have specifically proposed that there will be no further funding for physical activity provision for older people.

Evidence suggests that the easiest way of increasing levels of physical activity to improve health and wellbeing is to incorporate activity into everyday life, such as walking and moving more. There are  a wide range of alternative physical activity opportunities available in West Berkshire for older people including free community based walking, running and cycling groups, and a programme of activities for the over 50's 'Fit for Life' delivered at West Berkshire Leisure Centres, including falls prevention classes and Tai chi classes.

Some of the sessions that have been developed as part of the current Ever Active project are now in a sustained format, such as walking football and walking netball, and will be still available without the requirement for ongoing funding.  Consequently, we expect there will be a relatively small impact on those residents who are currently accessing the services.

Please refer to the pdf icon Equality Impact Assessment (EqIA) Stage One [396kb] for more details.

What else have we considered in arriving at our proposal?

The council's plan is to protect some voluntary sector provision, which is considered particularly effective or critical to the community, or which supports the delivery of a statutory function. There is evidence in West Berkshire Joint Strategic Needs Assessment regarding improvements to quality of life by reducing social isolation and enabling people to become more involved within their communities.

We are proposing to continue to fund projects that support vulnerable adults, including the visually impaired, socially isolated and those with dementia through provision of support into employment, home visits, cooking, gardening and social clubs although the funding for these areas will be reduced. These continue to support key priorities within the pdf icon Council Strategy 2015-19 (refreshed 2018) [8Mb] and the district's pdf icon Health and Wellbeing Strategy [2Mb].

Why we want your views

We would like to know how this proposal might impact you and the wider community, and any views you have on how we can minimise the impact of this proposed change.

All feedback will be considered at the Executive Committee on 14 February 2019. Following this, a final decision will be made at the Full Council meeting on 5 March 2019. The recommendations and your anonymised response will be posted on this page.

Please note: Social media discussions will not be monitored/considered as a valid response. 

What you told us

We received 16 responses (incl. one incomplete response) the consultation. A background to the proposal and outline of the responses can be found in the Consultation Summary Report

What we did

The Full Council meeting on 5 March 2019 decided to reduce the funding by £11,000, rather than the proposed £40,000.

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