'The detail is great, but now we want delivery'

Charities have welcomed the breadth and detail of last week's announcements on the third sector, but have urged the Government to keep its promises.

"What's impressive is just how comprehensive the Government has been," said Stephen Bubb, chief executive of Acevo, whose director of strategy, Nick Aldridge, was involved in the drafting of the public services action plan.

Bubb commended the Government for its attention to procurement and commissioning.

He said: "You can do a lot of headline stuff, but if you don't start changing the culture of organisations you don't get anywhere."

Bubb said his organisation would set up a group to monitor the Government's progress on its pledges.

Stuart Etherington, chief executive of the NCVO, stressed the need for swift action. "It is now important that the Government's warm words are embedded on the ground," he said. The Government should urgently act on outstanding proposals from its 2002 cross-cutting review, such as full cost recovery and payment on time, he added.

Kevin Curley, the chief executive of Navca, said: "The real test of the Government's commitment will come when the comprehensive spending review is announced in the summer." Of the £30m community asset fund, the Development Trusts Association and the Adventure Capital Fund said the Government should trim excessive legislation. "This would be most effective if various bits of red tape were removed," a joint statement said.

Chris Leslie, director of the New Local Government Network, said the announcements on community assets and three-year funding would put local authorities under new pressures. "Local government will need to update its budgeting and prioritising processes because expectations will be high," he said.

Shadow voluntary sector minister Greg Clark said the Government should make good on its promises. He said: "What counts now is action."

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