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Dennett House, 11 Middle Street
Taunton, Somerset, TA1 1SH

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Tel: 01823 270101                    
Email: info@swcouncils.gov.uk

The Team


Training and Events

Many of our courses can be adapted for in-house delivery and can be specifically tailored to meet individual needs.

Sometimes due to reasons beyond our control a course has to be cancelled or postponed.  We will advise nominating officers and applicants immediately of such a decision.  Please note in exceptional circumstances we may have to make changes at short notice to the content (to reflect changes in legislation, current thinking or topical issues), timing, speakers and/or venue.

South West Councils, Dennett House, 11 Middle Street, Taunton, Somerset TA1 1SH, Learning and Transformation Administration Team: 01823 270101


South West Challenge 2020



Oct 08, 2020 09.30 - 20.30


Westpoint, Exeter EX5 1DJ


winners 2019 


Are you ready for a Challenge?

The South West Challenge is a scenario based development event that offers a rare opportunity for aspiring managers across the South West to gain exposure to issues outside of their normal working lives and gives them a taste of what senior management is like.  

Working as a team of six people, delegates will spend the day as the management team of a fictional local authority, encountering many of the tasks that a real corporate team would deal with.

They’ll have to work as a team, with neighbouring councils and with partner organisations to deliver a new strategy for the council. They’ll learn how to keep calm and focussed whilst choosing which areas to prioritise; dealing with sensitive issues and still keeping their focus on how to give the public the best services with limited budgets.

Although set around a local authority scenario teams from outside local government have found the challenge beneficial, and in 2019 Dartmoor National Park won best Chief Executive and Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service won Best Partnership.


The event offers a unique, full-day, fully-interactive training experience which offers delegates the chance to:

  • gain a practical insight into how senior management works
  • experience working under pressure with colleagues
  • consider your organisation’s agenda for transformational change and discuss innovative ideas
  • develop ways of managing the current financial constraints
  • engage in partnership working and political communication to gain better understanding of the benefits this can bring

There is a winner on the day and several awards but the main purpose is developmental. After the event teams receive a development report capturing feedback from across the day with input from Chief Executives and other senior officers, who support as role players.

Got A Question? Check out our FAQ:

FAQ - South West Challenge

Download an Application Form Here:

SW Challenge 2020 Application

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Learning Event Application Form