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This page captures stories from people who have benefited from public services.
 
 
1. All public services.  By Toby Blume, Chief Executive of the charity the Urban Forum.  "How could I just choose one! the best thing about public services, is that they are always there, often in the background, providing valuable, high quality services that me and my family rely on constantly. Collecting the refuse and recycling, educating and nurturing my children’s development, caring for us when we need medical assistance…even something as mundane as lighting the streets."
 
2. NHS - hospital. By Karin, contract publisher and editor.   Karin remembered her "consultant orthopaedic surgeon at Royal Berkshire Hospital who operated on a prolapsed disc when I was 18, enabling me to return to my university studies."
 
3. Police.  By Darren, site owner.  "I was mugged when aged 10.  I was living in Stevenage and, sent out the shops, I was on a path when it was blocked by a youth on a bicycle who proceeded to snatch my mothers purse containing about £5. He escaped and shortly after another youth came up, saw me OK, and helped me look for the mugger.  The youth was carrying a fearsome knife that he said was to protect himself when he took his dad's business money to the bank.  This isn't exactly legal now and I suppose thankfully we didn't spot the mugger.  Later that day, my parents contacted the police and they drove me round the neighbourhood looking for the mugger.  Again, no result, but it was very reassuring and I have felt very positive about the police ever since.  It is a reminder that public servants don't need to achieve a target (solving a crime, for instance) to make a difference to the public.  Just being there counts, sometimes."  
 
4. Local authorities.  By Pete Feenstra, music promoter,  (website)  "Local authorities are an essential part of our life. I was attracted to my job [Pete was once a music librarian] because of what I had seen working successfully in Denmark. They had commercially, functioning public/private art houses where a public building would have a theatre, art gallery,  live music, bistro and book shop etc all under the same roof, but on different floors. Some of the same ideas came into the public services thinking in the UK, but too often the bureaucracy got in the way of effective marketing... there were several specific people, from the guy that first hired me, to the people who shared the vision of libraries not necessarily being tied to either books or indeed the same buildings, and to those people who at one stage or another were persuaded by me to subsidise films, music, author talks and more! There were some really great people who looking back were completely under utilised because of the rigidity of their job description. And there were also some people who were great simply because they were consistent and reliable, that is professional but who also liked their jobs."   Read Pete's story and business tips.