The work of North Ayrshire’s Locality Partnerships is being celebrated almost one year on from its launch.

The partnerships, which launched last September, are designed to bring democracy to a grassroots level and help local communities have a real say on issues which affect them.

Members of North Ayrshire’s six Locality Partnerships and partner organisations got together at a special conference to share ideas and best practice.

The keynote speaker was Minister for Local Government and Housing, Kevin Stewart MSP.

Mr Stewart said: “The Community Empowerment Act provides a framework to help communities strengthen their voices in the decisions that matter to them and offer them more opportunities to make a difference on their own terms.

“Local partnerships, like those running in North Ayrshire, are a good example of what has been achieved by creating new rights for community groups. Giving people more control over decisions that affect them, empowering communities to develop their own economies, wellbeing and environments.”

The event, at Fullarton Connexions in Irvine, allowed members to discuss the progress being made through the Locality Partnerships based in Irvine, Arran, Garnock Valley, Kilwinning, North Coast and Cumbraes, and the Three Towns.

The Locality Partnerships are made up of local people and those with specific expertise who work together to develop locality plans.

The plans ensure a stronger and more localised way of setting local priorities and responding to community challenges.

North Ayrshire Council leader Joe Cullinane, who is chair of the Community Planning Partnership, said: “We are now almost 12 months on from the launch of our Locality Partnerships and this is the perfect time to share their successes and address some of the challenges.

“By empowering our local communities, it has given them a greater stake in decisions that affect their everyday lives.

“Today, we’ve seen some of the best examples of partnership working and I’m looking forward to see that develop over the coming months and years.”

Find out more about Locality Partnerships in North Ayrshire at

The site also features the searchable consultation portal, which lets communities see at a glance who is consulting on what in their local area and how they can contribute.