Ideological dominance in recreation provision: towards a theory of Local Authority response to Compulsory Competitive Tendering in Britain
Ravenscroft, N. and Tolley, J., (1993) Ideological dominance in recreation provision: towards a theory of Local Authority response to Compulsory Competitive Tendering in Britain. Working Papers in Land Management & Development. 09/93. Working Paper. University of Reading, Reading. pp24.
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This paper considers how the delivery of public leisure services in Britain has been affected by the imposition of Compulsory Competitive Tendering (CCT) on the management of facilities. In particular, it focuses on the changing relationship between the central and local levels of government, theorising a tripartite local response to CCT, incorporating local statism, post-Fordist rejection of CCT and post- Fordist compliance with the aims of the central administration. The paper then discusses the actual implementation of CCT, relating the theorised responses to those witnessed in practice. This results in the delineation of a continuum of stances, ranging from pragmatic forms of local statism, such as the protection of the former direct labour force, to centrist attempts to combine the ethics of socialism with the mechanics of the market, to an outright rejection of state organisation and control. The paper concludes that although legitimate attempts have been made to protect local services, the outcome of the CCT process has undoubtedly been the regeneration of public leisure provision away from its service roots towards a market model of provision.