Flatpack Democracy in Action

Power tools for reclaiming local politics... around the world

Flatpack Democracy was sold as a ‘DIY Guide for Creating Independent Politics’. Eco-logic Books has directly sold copies to a number of European countries, significantly to Holland, Belgium and Denmark, with others going to Canada, New Zealand and America. Who knows where copied sold through other outlets have ended up! Some of these have led to campaigns to take over local councils in versions of the way outlined in the book. Others have stimulated ideas leading to new attempts to retake local democracy.

The book also led to a number of TV reports, perhaps most surprisingly in South Korea, and ‘political tourists’ are now a regular amongst visitors to Frome.

In the UK we know of over 100 places where serious attempts have been made to engage with the system, of which around 20 have resulted in councils run in a similar way to Frome.  There are probably many more. Of particular interest is a cluster of small towns near to Buckfastleigh in Devon, who are now working to support each other in their efforts to make local politics work for their communities. Many of these are described in Flatpack Democracy 2.0 along with direct experiences from the campaigns and early adventures of newly independent towns.

Interviews

When we were putting together Flatpack Democracy 2.0 we thought it would be useful and add an additional depth to the book if we drew on what was happening elsewhere in the world of local democracy. We had been following upwards of 100 independent groups round the country as they moved (or not) towards taking control of their Parish or Town Council. We chose these places as a typical cross-section of the length, breadth and dynamism of the Flatpackery movement. Each person interviewed kindly gave up their time and were generous in sharing their experiences. We can’t thank them enough.

The interviews were free-ranging and sort of followed a pattern – click on the name of the town to see a .pdf of a summary of the interview:

Copyright © Peter Macfadyen 2019