As 2020 approaches, senior figures from across government reflect on their highlights and challenges of 2019, look ahead to the next 12 months and share their favourite festive memories
What was your highlight of 2019?
This year I visited every CPS area in England and Wales and it was immensely rewarding to meet people across the organisation, hearing about their experiences and the hard work they put in to making fair, independent and objective decisions every day. It’s so important to share examples of great practice and successes, so the organisation can continue to learn, grow and improve the service we offer to the public.
What has been the most significant change in your organisation this year?
I’ve just finished my first year at the CPS and it’s been great to see the time and effort that everybody puts into delivering justice. I was delighted when Rebecca Lawrence joined us as chief executive in September, she is absolutely committed to supporting each profession within the CPS in their work making a difference to people’s lives. It’s vital that the organisation continues to adapt to the ever-changing nature of crime to ensure we understand what is needed to bring a case to trial in evolving crime types.
A joined-up response from all parts of the criminal justice system is essential to truly keep the public safe
What will be the biggest challenge of 2020 – and how are you preparing to meet it?
The £85m investment that the prime minister announced earlier in the year will help to provide increased capacity, enabling us to respond effectively to challenging trends we currently face, from violent crime to the explosion of digital evidence. We are currently developing our strategy looking ahead to 2025 and setting out what we want to achieve, so that we can continue to improve our service to the public and increase their confidence in our work. While we’re focused on dealing effectively with an increasingly complex caseload, a joined-up response from all parts of the criminal justice system is essential to truly keep the public safe.
Tell us a favourite festive memory from your youth...
I vividly remember making igloos in the snow with my friends in Northumberland when I was younger, we had a lot of fun. You don’t really get snow like we used to have anymore – especially not in central London!