Local Authority Vehicles since 1970
- Mike Street
15th October 2023
Local government has undergone significant changes since the early 1970s. Firstly, in 1974, the county boroughs, urban districts and rural districts were replaced by district or borough councils operating under county councils. At this time local authorities were responsible for the operation of a large number of services within their boundaries including road construction, maintenance and cleansing; refuse collection and disposal; parks and playing fields; as well as education and social services. In the 1980s competitive tendering saw many services either contracted out to private companies or operated by in-house direct labour organisations. From 1996 another reorganisation saw the creation of many unitary authorities responsible for all services in the area – in much the same way that county borough councils operated until 1974.
A large variety of vehicles, from pedestrian-operated pavement sweepers to maximum capacity articulated units, were used on these duties. This book looks at some of the vehicles in use by local authorities, from Devon to Scotland, since the 1970s.