Slinky the sausage dog has put council communications officers in line for a national award.

Head of the communications team at Swindon Borough Council Phil Avery told members of the authority’s communities and place overview committee that two campaigns run by Euclid Street have been nominated.

One is the campaign to get people to know they had to take their polling card with them when they went to vote at the local elections.

That campaign which saw Slinky the sausage dog achieve fame on social media channel has been nominated for Campaign of the Year in the 2019 Local Government Chronicle awards.

His owner Lewis Moran works at the council’s communications team on its digital communications.

He said: “We were brainstorming what we could do on social media over the voter trial, and we thought dogs always do well on social media. It was just a fun way of trying to get people to pay attention.”

Lewis added that if the campaign won an award Slinky, an 18-month old dachshund, might also get some treats

The Slinky campaign also won a silver award from the Chartered Institute of Public Relations Pride awards for best public sector campaign

A winning gold medal in the same awards was given to an internal campaign to increase the number of staff at the council getting a flu inoculation last winter.

Councillor Keith Williams,the council's cabinet member for corporate and customer services, said: “We were thrilled that our campaigns were recognised in these awards which received entries from across the private and public sector.

“Our gold-winning flu vaccination campaign helped drive a 35 per cent increase in the number of staff receiving a flu vaccination last winter, helping them to stay well and maintain hundreds of services that residents rely on. All for the princely outlay of just £112. This year’s campaign has surpassed this, with over 900 staff getting a vaccination this year. Our successful campaign to support last year’s Voter ID pilot also showed the value of creative and engaging content, helping to drive up turnout and ensure that all but 25 people out of more than 62,000 turned up to vote with their polling card.

“These awards provide fantastic recognition for the team’s efforts.”

The citation said: “This was an internal communications campaign which made a real difference. They devised a well thought-out, costed and measurable campaign to change behaviour.”

Mr Avery said: “It was very pleasing to get the goldbecause we were up against several private sector companies