For most of his career Chris Taggart has worked in magazines as a journalist, editor and publisher, working on The Face, Arena, and launching teenage magazine Sugar and upmarket parenting magazine Junior).
After selling his company about four years ago, Taggart taught himself to program. He started coding OpenlyLocal in Feb 2009 as a prototype/proof-of-concept because no one else seemed interested in opening up local authority data. Since then, it has grown beyond all expectations, and now has in-depth information on over 140 councils across the UK, as well as basic information on all 434 authorities, and a hyperlocal site directory.
Everything is open data, free for reuse by all (including commercially). He is also on the Government’s Local Public Data Panel, and was the originator of the Open Election Data Project.