Francis Maude launches Pathfinder mutuals

The first wave of Pathfinder mutuals have been launched by Francis Maude, Minister for the Cabinet Office.  The Pathfinders will be run by entrepreneurial public sector staff, who will take over delivery of their services. 

As part of the Government’s commitment to support the innovation and entrepreneurialism of front line staff, twelve fledgling public service spin-offs have been chosen to be Pathfinders for the mutuals initiative.  These pathfinders will be trailblazers for the rest of the public sector – helping Government establish, by learning from the front line, what type of support and structures will best enable the development of employee-led mutuals on an ongoing basis.

The pathfinders will be supported by expert mentors from some of the country’s most successful businesses and leaders in employee ownership models.  All the mentors have offered their support for free and will work with staff in the Pathfinder projects to help them develop a range of sustainable, efficient and pioneering employee-led services.

The mentors will include staff from the John Lewis Partnership, probably the country’s best-known co-owned business, as well as from PWC, KPMG, Tribal, Baxi Partnership, Care and Share Associates, Sunderland Home Care Associates, Central Surrey Health, Local Partnerships, Godrevy, GLL (Greenwich Leisure), and The Office for Public Management will also be providing mentors.  Also, leading lights in this field, like Lord Victor Adebowale of Turning Point, have offered to be mentors.

The Pathfinders have a range of different innovative business models.

The Pathfinders are:

  • An awarding body setting up as a mutual by a consortium of FE colleges;
  • The London Partnership – creating a ‘Reducing Multiple Disadvantage’ Community Interest Company from a group of DH, LA, PCT and NHS staff;
  • The Department of Health’s London and SE Learning Disability Team forming a regional Community Interest Company;
  • Hammersmith and Fulham Children’s Services exploring new models of delivery with staff, possible commercial partners and neighbouring local authorities;
  • North East Essex PCT spinning out into a Community Interest Company;
  • The creation of a social enterprise for delivery of housing support services to vulnerable people in Mansfield, bringing together a range of public sector workers;
  • The Lambeth Resource Centre exploring options for coproducing services with employees, service users and third sector organisations to provide rehabilitation support for people with physical and sensory impairment;
  • NHS employees forming a social enterprise to provide joined up services for homeless people in Leicester;
  • Teaching and administrative staff planning to set up a Trust to run Newton Rigg Agricultural College in Cumbria;
  • The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea working with employees to examine the potential for different models of employee led youth support services;
  • Integration of Community Health and Adult Social Services in Swindon into a cooperative; and
  • Westminster City Council working with employees in Children’s Services and neighbouring local authorities to move towards creating an arms-length mutual organisation.

For further information please see the Cabinet Office press announcement.

This entry was posted in 3 Public services, 9 Better partnerships and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.


  1. Tom Godwin
    Posted 6 October, 2010 at 11:52 pm | Permalink

    I think that this is a great initiative, it is vital that the people who carry out tasks on a daily basis have an input into how the organizational policy dictates that they do this.

    Encouraging a more entrepreneurial spirit within governmental services can only be a good thing!

  2. tampa criminal defense attorney
    Posted 25 May, 2011 at 6:12 am | Permalink

    I can see that this is a very good program. This would really be of great help to the people especially those who engage in business and even to the entire society. Good work!

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>