Posted by: Witch Doctor | April 2, 2009

Common Purpose – the beginning


Common Purpose (CP) is an organisation concerned with the development of leaders and was founded in 1988 by Julia Middleton. She became Chief Executive in 1989.

“Common Purpose began in 1989 with four staff, a small office off Oxford Street and a big idea.”

CP Website

Julia Middleton is British, and educated in London, France and the USA.

It is stated in the blogosphere that The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister was associated with CP. John Prescott was the Deputy Prime Minister.

It is also claimed that Julia Middleton was Head of Personnel in the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM). The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister  did not come into existence until 2002, long after CP was founded. It was disbanded in June 2006 when it reverted to The Communities and Local Government Committee. Hazel Blears is the current Secretary of State for this Department.

I have no evidence of the claim that claim that Julia Middleton was employed in the ODPM but this information would be easy to confirm or refute from that department.

There is reference in a 1995 article in “THE INDEPENDENT” to a £500,000 donation to kick start Common Purpose.



Chief executive, Common Purpose

“A communitarian before the word was invented: born in London, comes from Bolton, educated in France, lived in a string of European countries and New York as a child and took a BSc in Economics at the LSE. She is 37, married with four small children and reckons to speak better French than English. She started off in employee relations with the Industrial Society before moving to Petrofina, British Home Stores and back to the Industrial Society, where she launched the Head Start inner cities programme, training unemployed young people. In 1988, she founded Common Purpose, persuading Government and business to stump up pounds 500,000 for the launch of a project that links potential leaders and managers from a range of public and private sectors within cities, and now across cities, through educational training programmes. She has that rare talent to persuade the great and the good – from permanent secretaries to politicians and business managers – to contribute time and effort. Nominated Visionary of the Year in 1992. Frequently head-hunted by the private sector, but not willing to sacrifice her lifestyle and children for money. “What makes me burn is that my own generation must not just drop out of community life and assume that everyone will do it on their behalf,” she says. Obvious next job: head of a major charity.”

Presumably that part of the £500,000 start up money from HMG originated from The Taxpayer.

Presumably HMG felt this money was a good investment for The Taxpayer.

The Website “CP exposed” carries photocopies, which look genuine enough, of documents dated 19 August 2005 replying to a Freedom of Information Request relating to expenditure authorised by ODPM with respect to Common Purpose.



Central Unit – £3730

Regional coordination Unit – £54,293.38

2005 – August 2005

Regional Co-ordination Unit – £23,406.25

Presumably this was money spent for staff to attend Common Purpose courses.

Presumably the money originated from The Taxpayer.

Presumably the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister felt it would be good for The Taxpayer if some of its employees attended these courses paid by The Taxpayer.

Common Purpose and Common Purpose International are Registered Charities:



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