2017: The year in review by the Managing Director

Early Years Sector AwardsJanuary: 

The Early Years Sector Awards was held at the Life Centre in Winton. The event highlighted the work that happens every day to provide outstanding care and education and the best possible outcomes for local children and their families.



Bournemouth was awarded £8.5million to create a world class business district at the Lansdowne. The Lansdowne area will be completely revolutionised to become one of the South West’s leading commercial districts.

The funding has been secured via the Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership, and will see investment in improving the access from the train station up to what will eventually be the major new business district.


Tech NationMarch:

Bournemouth came out as top for high growth digital businesses in the UK Tech Nation 2017 Report, which identifies the top five cities for high growth digital businesses. Out of the 30 clusters profiled in the Tech Nation Report Bournemouth and Poole were listed at number one in the report’s findings ahead of London, Glasgow, Brighton and Newcastle.


Russell CotesApril: 

The Russell Cotes Museum was a finalist in the “Best Small Visitor Attraction” category of the “Visit England Awards for Excellence 2017” which took place at the Hilton Waldorf in London.


Bournemouth beachMay: 

This year marked the 30th Anniversary of the exclusive Blue Flag awards and we were delighted to host the milestone event at Chineside at Durley Chine, a prime location which has held Blue Flag status for 30 years. Keep Britain Tidy announced that four Bournemouth beaches had once again been awarded Blue Flag status for 2017 – Alum Chine, Durley Chine, Fisherman’s Walk and Southbourne Beach; alongside this, Bournemouth and Boscombe Beaches gained Seaside Awards.



The General Election 2017, which was called with very little notice, took place and required significant urgent organisation. Team Bournemouth rose to the challenge and delivered it in a safe and accurate way – an excellent example of Team Bournemouth at its very, very best.


Adoption agencyJuly: 

Aspire Adoption was the first Regional Adoption Agency in England to be fully implemented to enable better targeting for the recruitment of prospective adopters, speed up the matching and placement of children, improve adoption support services and potentially create efficiency savings.

Aspire Adoption brings together fifty staff from the three local authority adoption services in Bournemouth, Dorset and Poole. This is another great example of partnership working with the aim of improving vital services to our residents.


Red Arrows at the Bournemouth AirshowAugust: 

This year we welcomed an estimated 710,000 festival goers over three days to the Air Festival, alongside senior representatives from the Royal Air Force, Royal Navy and the British Army. Every year the festival seems to just get bigger and better and it is testament to everyone’s talent and hard work that the Bournemouth Air Festival now has an international reputation for excellence.


Metropole MarketSeptember: 

The first Lansdowne Metropole market was held on Sunday 24th September.  The market is named in honour of the grand Bournemouth Metropole Hotel which was situated on Lansdowne Roundabout before it was destroyed in an air raid during the Second World War.

The market forms part of the investment and focus on Lansdowne which the Council is working on with local businesses and the University.  An additional Christmas extravaganza to end the market will be held on the 17 December.



October saw the Arts by the Sea festival and Hydromania saw the reimagining of the Town Hall with a multi-sensory display of light and sound. Our arts and cultural offer is one of the many reasons our region is thriving and growing and is such a great place to live, work and play.


Future DorsetNovember: 

After a nine month wait, the Rt Hon Sajid Javid MP, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government announced that he is “minded to” implement the Future Dorset proposal for improving local government in Dorset, by replacing the existing nine councils with two new unitary authorities.

Before the Secretary of state takes his final decision, there is a period until 8 January 2018 for any representations to be made.


Bournemouth GardensDecember: 

This year we introduced a brand new market and lodge to the town centre as part of our Christmas celebrations.  With its fresh look, new stalls and addition of a Santa’s Grotto the Town is looking wonderful this year.

2017 has been a fantastic year for our town and our council. Many thanks to everyone for your contributions in ensuring we continue to build a better Bournemouth.

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a happy, healthy and prosperous 2018.


Jane Portman, Managing Director

About Jane Portman

Jane is the Managing Director of Bournemouth Borough Council overseeing all services offered to our residents and visitors. She regularly blogs here at BHblog.co.uk, but look out for guest authors too!
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