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Speak up for local democracy – in less than seven minutes

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PechaKucha Night

PechaKucha speakers wanted

We’re hosting a special PechaKucha Night in Huddersfield on Friday 10th February 2017 – and we’re looking for some speakers.

A PechaKucha Night is a fast-paced evening full of exciting speakers and topics. Ours will have a distinctly democratic flavour, as it’s a fringe event of Notwestminster 2017, a two day event bringing together people who have something positive to say about local democracy and who are up for the challenge of making it work better.  

Notwestminster PechaKucha Night 2016So if you’ve got something to say about local democracy, if you’ve a story to tell, or if you’ve got an idea to share, you might like to be one of our speakers on the night.

Each speaker will talk for 6 minutes 40 seconds on a theme of their choosing, following a “20 slides for 20 seconds” format. The slides advance automatically, so everyone gets exactly the same amount of time to speak – and you should be prepared to keep going!

The event will be in Cafe Ollo at the Media Centre on Northumberland Street in Huddersfield, from 7pm.

Our previous PechaKucha talks have included everything from whether public servants are human beings and why technology can’t save democracy, to the ‘joy’ of being a councillor and how regional democracy in England measures up to the Galactic Empire. As you can see, it’s a mixed bag, and sometimes challenging.

We’d love to hear your suggestions.

Councillor Andrew Cooper's PechaKucha talk

Want to be a speaker?

Please contact us if you’re interested in taking part. Get in touch by Friday 20th January if you can.

Want to listen to the talks?

Please come along to learn something new and be entertained. It’s a fun way to find out what inspires some of our local democracy advocates and to hear about people’s passions and interests. There are always a few surprises.

PechaKucha Night – register now


The Notwestminster PechaKucha Night is organised by the Media Centre in Huddersfield and the Notwestminster local democracy network.



Designing Your Democracy Experiment Day – 10th February 2017

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Democracy Experiments Day

Democracy Experiments Day

Friday 10th February 2017
The Media Centre, Northumberland Street, Huddersfield HD1 1RL


This is a day for anyone who is interested in making a difference to local democracy through practical experiments. It will give participants an understanding of the principles of design thinking and some hands on experience.

Nick Taylor from the University of Dundee will get us started with some key lessons that draw on his experiences with design-led civic technology experiments and community-level hackathons over a number of years. We will then be working on some real life examples brought along by participants, and trying out some techniques and approaches.

This day will be of interest to anyone who is already working on one of the Notwestminster experiments, anyone who would like to get involved or anyone who is interested more generally in design and democracy. Everyone is welcome and it’s free to take part.

Democracy Experiments Day – register now

Design Experiments for Local Democracy programme


Nick TaylorNick Taylor
University of Dundee

Nick Taylor is a Senior Lecturer in the University of Dundee’s School of Art and Design, specialising in Human–Computer Interaction (HCI) and Interaction Design. His main research interest is the use of technology to support civic engagement in communities, working closely with communities over extended periods of time and deployments of new technologies ‘in the wild’. His most recent research has involved the use of hackathons to support grassroots innovation by bringing together communities with local makers.


Lorraine ClarkeLorraine Clarke
University of Dundee

Loraine Clarke is a research associate at the University of Dundee’s School of Art and Design, with a background in Industrial Design and Human–Computer Interaction. Her research concentrates on physical technology supporting social interactions within groups in public spaces such as community spaces, museums or galleries. Her current research focuses on supporting community innovation utilising digital fabrication and the DIY maker movement.

Dave MckennaDave Mckenna
Scrutiny Manager,
City & County of Swansea

Dave works for the Council in Swansea where he has been for 20 years. Prior to finding a home with scrutiny he worked in a variety of front-line and policy roles with varying degrees of success. He has completed a PhD with the Department of Political and Cultural Studies, Swansea University. His topic was Local Government and Public Participation.

Localopolis (blog)
How to be a public servant (blog)

Photo of Dave courtesy of Anthony Mckeown.

Ed HammondEd Hammond


Centre for Public Scrutiny

Ed leads on the Centre for Public Scrutiny’s work around local accountability. His work has a particular focus on corporate governance within local authorities, but he has also carried out extensive research on policing and community safety, having produced national guidance for the operation of Police and Crime Panels in 2011 and 2012, and research on their first year in operation in 2014.

He is currently leading on Design Experiments for Local Democracy, a partnership programme from Notwestminster and CfPS.

Design Experiments for Local Democracy

Design Experiments for Local Democracy is a practical programme for local democracy advocates. We are encouraging people to rapidly test and evaluate new ways of doing local democracy, and we’re supporting each other in doing this. The programme is co-ordinated by the Centre for Public Scrutiny and the Notwestminster local democracy network.


Radical Heritage Trail

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Discover HuddersfieldRadical Heritage Trail

Saturday 7th February 2015

1.30pm to 3.30pm

Meet at the Harold Wilson statue
in St. George’s Square, Huddersfield

Discover Huddersfield’s rich heritage of radical politics in this free guided walk, which is part of Local Democracy for Everyone, a series of events in Huddersfield for anyone with an interest in local democracy.

Starting from the Harold Wilson statue in St George’s Square, this free guided trail will visit town centre sites that are associated with the Luddites and Chartists, the early days of the Labour Party, the anti-war movement during World War One and less celebrated groups such as Owenite socialists and secularists.

The walk will be led by Cyril Pearce, author of ‘Comrades in Conscience’ which tells the story of Huddersfield’s conscientious objectors, whose opposition to the Great War earned Huddersfield the reputation of being ‘a hotbed of pacifism’.

Please meet Cyril at the Harold Wilson statue in St. George’s Square, Huddersfield. The walk will last up to two hours and you’ll have an opportunity to drop in to the Media Centre at the end for a hot drink and to see the conclusion of the “We’re not in Westminster any more” event which will bring together advocates for redesigning local democracy.

More about the trail

Radical Heritage TrailFrom the 1790’s to the present day there hasn’t been a radical social or political movement in Britain which has not been reflected in Huddersfield. The campaign for the reform of Parliament, Chartism, the creation of the Independent Labour Party and the Labour Party itself, the women’s suffrage movement and Socialist Sunday Schools were all represented here. As were the Luddites and Robert Owen’s plans for a Socialist Utopia. In the 1830’s Huddersfield was a major centre of the campaign for factory reform, led by Richard Oastler.

Whether it was the temperance movement, the co-operative movement, Secularism, ‘Votes for Women’ or the refusal to fight in the First World War, Huddersfield men and women were involved.

This trail will guide you around a number of the buildings and places in the town centre which have been involved in these, often dramatic, moments in our local and national history. It is only a beginning. There is much more to learn.

The Radical Heritage Trail was developed by Huddersfield Local History Society in partnership with Discover Huddersfield. This walk is being run as part of Local Democracy for Everyone, a series of events in Huddersfield for anyone with an interest in local democracy.

Discover Huddersfield
Huddersfield Local History Society
Comrades in Conscience

National Voter Registration Day

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National Voter Registration DayRegister to vote – Saturday 7th February 2015

Drop in to visit our Electoral Outreach Team
Huddersfield Media Centre lobby
10am to 12 noon & 1pm to 3pm

Our Local Democracy for Everyone events are happening in the same week as National Voter Registration Day.

All this week, many local organisations are campaigning to get people registered to vote – especially younger people who are massively under-represented on the electoral register.

Did you know that only around 50% of 16 to 24 year olds are actually registered to vote, compared with around 85% of people aged over 55?

Our Electoral Outreach Team are doing all they can to change this.

The process for registering to vote changed this year, which means that anyone aged 16 or over should be on the Electoral Register. It’s important for young people to register because:

  • If you’re not registered, you can’t vote in local or general elections.
  • If you want to get a mobile phone contract, the first thing that many companies check is the Electoral Register.
  • If you’ve just started working and you need to open a bank account, you need to be on the Electoral Register.
  • If you’re applying for a mortgage, you should make sure you are on the Electoral Register at your home address.

Drop in to get registered to vote. It’s easy!

Voting stickers

National Voter Registration Day – Thursday 5th February 2015

  • Kirklees Young People’s Service are helping out by providing a mobile hub which will be situated outside Huddersfield Bus Station on the day. Anyone can drop in to register. Look out for us!
  • Staff at Kirklees Libraries and Customer Service Centres will be on hand all day to help people register to vote. Huddersfield Library will be open until 7pm. Look out for the National Voter Registration Day posters, banners and leaflets.
  • The Student Union at Huddersfield University will be running a massive campaign to get students to register to vote.
  • Huddersfield Giants and the Student Engagement Team at Kirklees College will be running an event over the lunchtime period to get students to register.
  • Spen Valley High School are holding their own event on the day.
  • Greenhead College are joining with us and their student engagement team will be running a campaign around registering to vote, which will be held in their main hall.
  • In the evening, a mobile unit will team up with youth workers, to tour hotspots where young people congregate, and explain the benefits of registering to vote.


Bite the BallotNational Voter Registration Day is a Bite The Ballot campaign. This work is vital in bringing communities together and empowering as many people as possible. There are unnecessary barriers when it comes to getting involved in democracy. We’re doing our bit to remove these barriers, making voter registration and engagement easy for everyone.

PechaKucha Night

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PechaKucha – Friday 6th February 2015

PechaKucha night in Huddersfield

Join us for PechaKucha Night at The Media Centre to hear about people’s passions and interests – or share your own.

Each speaker will talk for 6 minutes 40 seconds each, following a “20 slides for 20 seconds” format.

Please contact us if you’re interested in being one of the speakers.

PechaKucha Night is fast-paced and full of exciting speakers and topics. It’s like a more democratic version of a TED talk. Think of it as our hustings and come along to learn something new and be entertained – but please promise not to heckle.

This is a free, public event organised by The Media Centre, in collaboration with Local Democracy for Everyone.

Eventbrite -  PechaKucha Night Huddersfield No. 12

Free admission. Everyone welcome.