Retained Duty System--making it work: Gerry Goldsack, DCLG, opened the workshop by giving an overview of what had happened since the publication of the 2005 Retained Review. He admitted that not much has moved forward.(Fire Conference 2006)

The conclusions: one size fits all does not work, the absence of coherent strategies to raise the profile of the Retained Duty System in the business community etc, had not been progressed. "Most progress has been made locally, not at the centre," he informed.

Only two regional action groups formed following the review and there are still gaps in intelligence and awareness, he said, adding that there is a great need to integrate the information and data out there. "My role also diminished due to the Inspectorate being disbanded by next March. We had some successes behind the scenes but it was another missed opportunity."

The recent conference found that there is a need for effective leadership, a clear role of national champion, and there is a vacuum to be filled following the Inspectorate's dissolution. …

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