Deputy Director of Adult Social Care
Assistant Director of Strategic Commissioning, Wellbeing and Quality Assurance
Consultant in Public Health

About Reading

Reading Borough Council is determined to thrive as an organisation, so that it can led the way in helping  to shape  Reading’s future. The Council has a long track record of being ambitious for Reading’s success, even where there are challenges.  The Council is adapting and improving to meet these challenges, against a familiar backdrop of austerity and a growth in demand for services.

We are taking strong action to get into good financial shape. This allows us to better serve local people, lead public services locally and strive for  am even more positive future. We will work as one, a well-run Council in what we call “Team Reading”. By working together we ensure the focus remains on making real differences, so that our residents see a difference when they use  our services.

The authority is Labour controlled (31 of 46 elected members). Councillor Jo Lovelock (Labour) is the Leader of the Council. Peter Sloman has been the Chief Executive since July 2017, following nearly a decade as Chief Executive at Oxford City Council where it received the LGA Council of the Year award.

Our Director of Adult Social Care is Seona Douglas who joined us in July 2017.  Seona previously held a number of Assistant Director roles in County and Unitary councils, and a London Borough. Seona has worked in both children’s and adult services, starting her career as a Social Work Assistant in the North East and holding jobs at each level before her current position.  Seona is passionate about ensuring we are always focussed on the customer experience.

Quality of life is high in Reading and it also has a high performing economy. It is one of the most diverse populations in the South East outside London with a history of strong and cohesive neighbourhoods. It has a rich, but sometimes hidden, history and heritage and a thriving arts and cultural offer.

At the same time Reading is the 4th most unequal UK city. This means certain resident groups are being left behind and not benefiting from our successful economy. There is rising demand for services to support and protect older and vulnerable people and children at risk, which has had a big  impact on our budgets at a time when funding is reducing. This means balancing the Council’s budget has been difficult, and has required the Council to produce and implement robust plans to deliver its Medium Term Financial Strategy.

In 2017/18 the Council worked with partners at Reading University and businesses to develop a new Reading 2050 vision document which was launched in October following an extensive period of development and consultation by the three influential local organisations: Reading UK, Reading University and Barton Willmore. This sets out a shared view of key priorities for the future of Reading. 

The Council has endorsed this vision and, in its role as community leader, wants to work alongside other agencies and organisations to realise the vision’s ambitions. Its vision is to:

  • •  Share success to support and enable thriving communities
  • •  Deliver a real sense of place and identity
  • •  Thrive on cultural and cross generational diversity
  • • . Recognise our heritage and natural assets
  • • . Embeds technology to deliver innovation and low carbon living for all
  • •  Welcome ethical and sustainable businesses which support Reading

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