Annual Report 2023 to 2024

Last updated: 6 June 2024 Download the report (pdf, 3.2 MB)

1. Foreword

With ongoing global emergencies and conflicts, persistent inflation, cost of living pressures and continued increased demand on our services, this has been an incredibly challenging year for Buckinghamshire Council. Along with other councils up and down the country, we have been operating in an extremely difficult economic environment which has forced us to take some tough decisions with regards to ensuring our financial sustainability.

That said, I continue to be thankful that we took the decision to create a unitary council for Buckinghamshire in 2020, as it has provided financial resilience and enabled us to deliver savings which would not have been achievable otherwise. It is my strongly held belief that, had we not made the transition to unitary, we would have been less well placed to weather the financial storm that we currently face.

As you’ll read throughout this annual report, we have achieved much this year despite the challenges outlined above. We have continued along our unitary journey to a position where the vast majority of our services are more efficient and customer-focused. We have also continued to develop our corporate culture that values collaboration, innovation and accountability.

The cost of living pressures have had a significant impact on our residents and I am proud of the way that we have continued to support them this year. Our Helping Hand service has provided both financial and practical support to residents in need, whilst our Opportunity Bucks programme is beginning to make a real difference to some of the most disadvantaged areas in the county. We have continued to welcome and support guests fleeing the war in Ukraine as well as refugees from Afghanistan, whilst also accommodating families in need of housing at our new temporary accommodation facility in High Wycombe.

Despite the undoubted challenges we have experienced this year, we have demonstrated our commitment to the things our residents tell us matter most to them. We have worked with our new highways contractor and made major investments into improving the condition of the county’s road network and footways, with new ways of working meaning more jobs have been completed to a better standard. We have also made good progress against our environmental pledges, with a 73.4% reduction in our carbon emissions, compared to the 1990 baseline. We continue to deliver against our Corporate Plan and Strategic Vision for 2050 which underpin the work that we do.

The dedication and commitment of our Members, staff and partners has been key to our achievements over the last twelve months, and I am confident that we are in a strong position to achieve yet more successes in the coming year.

Martin Tett
Leader, Buckinghamshire Council

Martin Tett, Leader, Buckinghamshire Council