Mutual Ventures

Local services in the community

Public services are part of what makes a place. Leisure centres, libraries, museums, parks, local events, youth services and a whole other range of services provided by local authorities are vital to community well-being, and supporting vulnerable people.

Local government leaders face decreasing financial resource, pressures from adults and children’s services together with a requirement to continue to provide other public services. In this context, maintaining and improving services, whilst balancing the budget is a formidable challenge.

Mutual Ventures can support councils redesign and transform local services in a variety of ways, as set out below.

To learn more about how we could help you contact John Copps on

Our offer: A strategy for local services

We can support you with an end-to-end strategy process for one or more service(s), ensuring a move away from ‘managed decline’ to a sustainable future.

Our expert consultants will work with you to design a strategy that suits your circumstances and fits with your local vision for services. This could include repositioning the services away from a ‘traditional’ service to one based on partnership or a new, entrepreneurial model.

Key areas where we can help you include:

  • Determining the current and future need for the service
  • Defining the service’s future function and the ‘right’ model for services
  • Delivering a clear road-map for the future

Our offer: Direct support to third sector organisations

It is vital that third sector organisations, whether they be charities, social enterprises, mutuals or co-operatives, maintain a focus on the future. We have years’ of experience creating and supporting third sector organisations and can offer support through a wide range of strategic planning and diagnostic packages tailored to your individual circumstances.

Key areas where we can help you include:

  • Business planning
  • Outcome-based planning and performance management
  • Financial health checks
  • Identifying potential partners including merger opportunities
  • Service redesign
  • Governance review and performance appraisal

Our offer: New delivery models

We are experts in the design of new organisational forms, such as public sector-owned trading companies, joint ventures and independent social enterprises. New organisational forms can deliver significant benefits for public services by supporting a focus on improvement, saving money and encouraging innovation. We have substantial experience of delivering new models across local services including libraries, culture and leisure, and youth services.

Through a tried-and-tested process, we can support you through the entire journey of implementation, from exploring options to launching a new service.

Key areas we can help guide you through the process are:

  • Option Analysis – translating your ambitions into options for organisational design
  • Stakeholder engagement – working with your partners, staff and service users to create a shared vision
  • Testing your business cases – assessing the benefits, risks and sustainability of your preferred option
  • Business planning – ensuring the model can deliver on its promise and have the right systems to support it
  • Implementing your plan – expert project management, including technical, legal, procurement and tax advice
  • Post-implementation support – helping your new model achieve success, through tendering support, training and coaching

To learn more about how we could help you contact John Copps on

Some examples of our work

Libraries Unlimited  –  We supported the design and establishment of Libraries Unlimited, an independent staff and community owned charity delivering library services in Devon and surrounding areas, as well as continuing to support the charity to grow, post establishment.

City of Wolverhampton Council Leisure Service – We worked with the Council to identify the best future model for it’s leisure service, WV Active, to support the public health and financial sustainability objectives of the council.