News story

Government launches Big Society programme

The Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister have launched their civil society programme at an event in Downing Street with community activists and leaders from around the country. External site: [Big Society policy programme](

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

At a round table event in the Cabinet Room in Number 10, the PM, Deputy PM and invited guests debated the new civil society programme with Francis Maude, Minister for the Cabinet Office, and Nick Hurd, Minister for Civil Society.

The new proposals aim to create a climate that empowers local people and communities, building a big society that will “take power away from politicians and give it to people”.

Policies outlined today include giving communities more power and encouraging people to take an active role in their communities.

Speaking in the Cabinet Room, the PM said he wanted his vision of a “Big Society” of community work and social enterprise to be one of the “great legacies” of his Government.

He said:

Today is the start of a deep and serious reform agenda to take power away from politicians and give it to people.

That’s because we know instinctively that the state is often too inhuman, monolithic and clumsy to tackle our deepest social problems. We know that the best ideas come from the ground up, not the top down. We know that when you give people and communities more power over their lives, more power to come together and work together to make life better - great things happen.

The Government has also announced that Nat Wei, founder of Teach First, has been appointed advisor to the Government on Big Society and will be made a member of the House of Lords.

He will work alongside Nick Hurd, to lead on the delivery of the programme.

Published 18 May 2010