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Archived news release from 19 May 2005
Dudley Council Plus ready for launch
Contacting Dudley Council will enter a new era as the authority launches its ground-breaking service Dudley Council Plus on Monday (May 23).

This new service, staffed by around 60 specially trained advisors, offers people one point of contact for all council services, more convenience and longer opening hours - both over the phone and from its specially designed customer centre in Dudley.

The goal of Dudley Council Plus is to make it easy for people to contact the council. It gives one place to go for all council information, as well as one place to request an increasing number of services.

People in the borough can reach Dudley Council Plus by calling its easy-to-remember ‘phone number 01384 812345 or by walking into the service’s first centre on Castle Street to see an advisor in person.

Whether it’s on the phone or at the Castle Street centre, Dudley Council Plus will be open from 8am to 7.30pm on weekdays. It will also open Saturdays from 9am to noon.

The location for the new centre has been carefully chosen, very close to Dudley bus station and the pedestrian part of town, to give Dudley Council Plus a "high street" feel.

The council believes that its location and welcoming design will draw in many people out in the town centre, as well as those who prefer to contact the council on the phone.

The centre’s advisors have a mine of information at their fingertips. Backed by new technology, this enables them to give answers to a vast range of queries almost instantly.

On top of this, people can request an increasing number of services through Dudley Council Plus, although it will be some time before Dudley Council Plus can cover most of the 720 services Dudley Council provides.

As well as information and services, people can pay any council bill through Dudley Council Plus.

The centre is also specially designed to meet the latest laws on disability access, with a range of features including loop system and a one-level customer area.

In just five months, the site of the former Inshops indoor market has been transformed into this ultra modern facility. And it won’t stop there.

The council plans to open up to four further Dudley Council Plus centres across the borough, covering its main townships, with the next due to open in 2006.

Council leader Councillor David Caunt, said:
"Dudley Council Plus is about making it easy for people to contact the council and helping them get what they need, whether this is information or a service, in one place in just one visit or call.

"It will give people in the borough an extra new service that is more convenient, open longer and offers better access to our services."

--- Note To Editors ---

Dudley Council Plus - key points
This is a new extra service making contacting council easy
Dudley Council Plus is open longer
o 8am – 7.30pm weekdays
o 9am – 12 noon on Saturdays
The service is available by:
o phone on 01384 812345
o at Dudley Council Plus centre – Castle St, Dudley
With Dudley Council Plus you can get information on all council services – in one place
You can also request a growing number of services at Dudley Council Plus
People can pay any council bill at Dudley Council Plus
The Castle Street centre has a one level customer area and is designed to meet the access requirements
The centre is staffed by specially trained customer service staff
Dudley Council plans to open up to four further Dudley Council Plus centres across the borough

Release Date: 19 May 2005
Directorate: Chief Executives
Contact: Keith Mayou, CATS Programme Leader
Phone: 01384 814495
Email: keith.mayou@dudley.gov.uk
Address: Chief Executives Directorate, Dudley MBC, Council House, Dudley, West Midlands. DY1 1HF
Contact: Jan Jennings, Marketing and Communications Support
Phone: 01384 815219
Email: jan.jennings@dudley.gov.uk