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Public sector bodies work together across Cambridgeshire to map their assets

  • The benefits are so significant; the real question is why it took a period of austerity for us to take stock of the estates accumulated by different bodies over many years.

    Mark Lloyd, Chief Executive Officer, Cambridgeshire County Council

‘Making Assets Count’ – the joint management and use of the property portfolio across Cambridgeshire will lead to rationalisation of the estate and lower running costs (with a predicted 20% increase in property disposals over five years and a 20% revenue saving).

The challenge

Too often residents and businesses are confused about which public sector organisation does what and where to access their services. There are clear benefits in putting a number of services under one roof – cost savings; improvements to public accessibility and enhanced joint working. There is a growing understanding (and practical examples) of how public buildings such as libraries, can also house staff from the NHS®, police, district councils or the voluntary sector. Cambridgeshire County Council realised that rationalising the public sector estate would save millions of pounds and would benefit the community.

Cambridgeshire County Council’s total asset value is £920 million, with other public sector assets adding an additional £275 million.

The solution

Using a range of mapping datasets (including Ordnance Survey’s OS MasterMap® Topography Layer and OS VectorMap® Local products) a partnership of public sector organisations launched the Making Assets Count project in order to plot the entire estate on a single map. The county council’s geographical information systems (GIS) team has hosted the map and made it available to all partners via the Internet (and it is also published on the county’s website). The project has led to a Cambridgeshire-wide public sector asset management strategy for the joint management of these assets and a plan to deliver changes and increased sharing of properties. Their approach will ensure that all property assests and resouces are used efficiently – the property retianed will be better utilised and that disposed of will deliver revenue from leases or capital that can be reinvested in the community.

The Making Assets Count partner community:

  • Cambridgeshire County Council
  • Cambridge City Council
  • East Cambridgeshire District Council
  • South Cambridgeshire District Council
  • Huntingdonshire District Council
  • Fenland District Council
  • Cambridgeshire Constabulary
  • Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service
  • Cambridgeshire Primary Care Trust


  • Predicted revenue savings of 20% (on an asset portfolio valued at £1.2 billion).
  • 20–30% reduction in carbon emissions and sharing of vehicle depots.
  • More efficient estate in the right locations.
  • Using less space for public service and therefore freeing up valuable retail and commercial space.
  • Improved services and big cost-savings for residents and taxpayers.

The products used

    Download this case study PDF – 843kB


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