Need to move forward is paramount: history will judge the winners and losers from the pay settlement. What is crucial in the coming months is that there is no slippage, that modernisation is kept on track and that support for progress, sadly missing in the past, is forthcoming from all stakeholders. (view).(Industry Overview)

Phew! For a moment there we thought we were caught in a recurring nightmare: the one where you keep falling and don't wake up until you've hit the ground and are shaken awake by Claire Short telling you she's your new Minister. It's tempting to take a shower and pretend it was all a dream from a bad soap opera; unfortunately it wasn't, although the bad soap opera bit was probably right.

You could do with a holiday, spend time with the family, get to know the dog again, but there's a chief officer, or someone from the ODPM, or the union executive, or the authority chair who's telling you that you need to get back to the grindstone, worse still, that now the real work starts. …

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