Working Together Service

The Working Together Service aims to empower local communities

Working Together Service is a county council highway run service which has been developed to support and empower community groups to work on making improvements and undertaking highways maintenance activities within their local area. 

The service focusing on offering two clearly defined partnership agreements. The annual agreement allows community groups to employ an authorised 'person' to undertake agreed work on the highway categorised as low to medium risk activities. The Volunteer agreement enables communities to come together to undertake low risk volunteer activities, with support from Cumbria County Council.

Each agreement document is built bespoke, using the following templates as a starting point;

The service became fully established at the start of 2020, with the first of many agreements beginning to be developed with community groups to allow agreements to be in place for springtime.  

Due to the impact of COVID-19, all planned agreements were responsibly paused at the start of the pandemic and understandably there was a massive shift regarding safety, new restrictions and new priorities for everyone involved.

Over the summer months work took place to develop a more resilient and strengthened Working Together Service electronically to provide the safe continuation of service utilisation.

With the support of the new enhanced system, an agreement was put in place and the project was delivered during the summer months enabling volunteers to safely undertake sign cleaning in the village of cockermouth, following strict COVID-19 guidelines.

Clean team takes to town streets

Plans are now in place to deliver, with the community groups, all deferred agreements during Spring/Summer 2021. An invitation will also go out in the near future, inviting others to come forward to benefit from the service once more.

Cllr Keith Little, Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport, said:

"Working Together is all about helping to support our local communities to enhance their local areas in different ways. Cumbria has a long standing tradition when it comes to community spirit and I am delighted that the council is investing in services that enable local community groups to take the lead in low-risk and small-scale activities for the benefit of their friends, neighbours and fellow residents."

Questions and answers

Working Together has been established to provide support and structure to communities wanting to contribute to improving their local environment.

The activities included within these arrangements will be risk assessed to provide safety for all involved.

Activities (PDF 77KB)

Our priority it to make sure that all the checks and balances have been met so we're happy to then authorise work to be undertaken on our network, knowing that everyone involved will be kept safe.  Where possible, we will incorporate all known activities into the agreements, to formalise these activities going forward.

A dedicated Working Together Officer will work with each individual community group to understand where they would like to enhance their local environment and the additional activities they would like to undertake. From this the agreement will be built, bespoke to suit their individual needs.

Each agreement runs for one year and it will include a mixture of supporting documents which will sit alongside the agreement document. Each agreement can be renewed simply, year on year.

To express an interest to this wonderful community service, please email: workingtogether@cumbria.gov.uk