Ted Cantle began his career in Housing Aid in Manchester, dealing with homelessness, landlord and tenant disputes and welfare rights. Having become part of local government and paid for what he had done for a few years on a voluntary basis while still at university, not surprisingly, he fell in love with local government.
He rapidly developed his career in the areas of housing research, planning and area improvement and housing management and became Director of Housing for Wakefield MDC, then 13th largest housing authority, at the age of 29.
From 1974 he began publishing good practice articles on a range of housing issues (his publications will be introduced in due course) and he became Under Secretary for Housing and Works at the AMA in 1981, later moving to Leicester MDC as Director of Housing, and to Chief Executive in Nottingham City Council in 1990. From there he developed a passionate interest in environment issues, including climate change – yes, climate change was recognised more than 35 years ago!
Ted’s work on the environment included:
- setting up the first Environment City exemplar programme
- leading the Climate Change Declaration for local government
- developing the ‘Green Charter’ for Nottingham City
- founding Sustainability First, a national charity devoted to environmental change
- becoming a board member and Deputy Chair of the Environment Agency
Ted’s work on housing included
Developing new ways of assessing housing need; developing ‘mobility housing’ as a general standard that catered for people with disabilities; pioneering low energy housing; researching defects in ‘non-traditional’, system built housing, traditionally built properties and timber frame housing, which led to a new government funded programme and the creation of the ‘Housing Defects Act’; new tenant information systems and rights programmes; a racial attacks prevention scheme; and other developments