In Leigh this morning. Last time I was there was over Easter to do a walk starting from Pennington Flash then following the Glazebrook trail across Chat Moss to Cadishead. It's a fantastic walk not least because of the vast, panoramic views afforded by the flatness of the Moss, taking in the whole of the hills running in an arc from the northeast beyond Bolton to the southeast beyond Macclesfield.
This morning's visit, to Leigh Sports Village, is slightly less enjoyable as it is for the first meeting of the Combined Authority, now in its second year of existence. It's an important agenda ranging from the work on whole-place community budgets, i.e. how local and central goverment can work together more effectively to tackle big issues like re-offending rates (very much in the news today) and worklessness - to the potential localisation of rail franchising. Despite the importance of its agenda, the CA hasn't yet caught the public's imagination and remains for the time-being unique to Manchester. But that is set to change in the very near future with at least two other city-regions on the verge of announcing their own proposals for combined authorities. The CA has a big job to do in Manchester of promoting sustainable growth, but it also looks like yet again others are to follow where Manchester has led.