Basildon District is an amalgam of ancient communities like Billericay and Wickford, and Basildon New Town. The men and women who built Basildon up from the immediate post-war period to what it is today were just fallible human beings. So, they got a lot wrong, including building poorly-designed housing estates and erasing much valuable pre-New Town architecture from the map in their enthusiasm for the New. They also got quite a bit right though, especially in terms of building up a community from scratch and in providing the right infrastructure for business and enterprise. This is why Basildon has the largest employment zone in South Essex, and why it is home to many dynamic businesses, and that is what we celebrated at the Basildon Business Awards on Friday. This was a very enjoyable event indeed, with MPs, Councillors, local business and many others all there to see the best of Basildon Business rewarded for their success. As has become traditional, it was loud and glitzy, but it really worked in capturing the spirit of the District's business, which provides jobs and prosperity for so many.
If you read some commentators you would be forgiven for thinking that everything is always awful. Well, it isn't, and maybe we should say so a bit more often.