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Rates For The Job (1967)


Warning: screenonline full synopses contain 'spoilers' which give away key plot points. Don't read on if you don't want to know the ending!

Investigation into how Liverpool Corporation spends the £20million raised by the rates and how this benefits the city's 750,000 inhabitants. As well as the usual services such as refuse collection, street lighting, public libraries and emergency services, the narrator looks at benefits that are less quantifiable and contribute more to the quality of life in the city.

Scenes of children in a primary school at assembly and in the classroom. A teacher explains the importance of her job and the value of a quality education. Further along the educational road, Simon, a student at a technical college, talks about the excellent facilities available for his training in radar maintenance.

Liverpool's medical officer of health explains how his department works around the clock at one of the busiest ports in the world in order to prevent diseases entering the country. He talks about the city's health visitors, who look after infant and family health, the chiropody service for the elderly, the ambulance service and finally the occupational therapists helping disabled people be more independent.

New housing and playgrounds are coupled with views of the corporation's slum clearance work, and it is argued that the city's proximity to areas of natural beauty - Cumbria, North Wales and the Peak District - is helping to attract new industry and factories to Liverpool, as they encourage people to come and live and work there. The director of Liverpool Airport talks about the Corporation's investment in the new runway and the Planning Officer unveils an ambitious redevelopment scheme for the city centre.

Finally, a mother explains that in the past she resented having to pay rates as she couldn't see the benefits. When she had her baby, the Corporation's midwife made her appreciate the sorts of things that she is paying for.