The Origins of the Local Government Service


By Kenneth Poole, published 1st December 2001

The concept ‘local government’ dates only from the middle of the nineteenth century. ‘Local government service’ emerged later still. In 1903 Redlich and Hirst1 wrote of ‘municipal officers’, while in 1922 Robson2 preferred ‘the municipal civil service’. ‘Local government service’ perhaps derives its pedigree from its use in the final report of the (Onslow) Royal Commission on Local Government, 1929, Cmd 3436. The terminology is thus new, but the subject matter immemorial.

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