Still Batting

Spent two days over the Bank Holiday weekend at Old Trafford watching cricket and might have hoped that today, with the first meeting this Municipal year (which starts in May with the local elections) of the Council's Executive, I might be able to put my footballing woes behind me. Not so.

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Congratulations to MUFC

On behalf of Manchester City Council, congratulations to Sir Alex Ferguson and Manchester United Football Club on winning the UEFA Champions League. Well done, we are proud of you.

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Innovation and Improvements

In London today to take part in a conference on something vital to Manchester's future - innovation. If we are going to grow our economy, then it has to be around innovation. The days of traditional heavy industry, of manufacturing industry are never again going to provide the number of jobs we need to create and sustain. We have to look at more original ways of sustaining our city economy, including continuing to host major events.

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Reducing, Recycling and Running

I'm delighted to learn today that 89 per cent of Manchester residents are keen to do their bit for the environment and recycle more of their household rubbish.

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Keeping Promises

Before I get into blogging about anything else, I have promised more details on this for two days now so here goes. On Sunday I am taking part for the first time in our Great Manchester Run, which is now probably the country's most prestigious 10K event. I'm a regular cyclist and have been training, am aiming to beat 50 minutes but think it's too risky to make that a firm promise. I'm raising funds for St Anne's Hospice in Cheadle, John Eastwood Hospice Trust and Christie's Appeal and anyone who wants to incentivise me or sponsor me can leave a message below, thanks.

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Tolerance and Trust

I planned to blog today on the street parties and the carnival atmosphere of the UEFA Cup Final as well as my training for Sunday's Great Manchester 10 kilometre run, the next extravaganza in Manchester's World of Sport 08. And it's true that tens of thousands of people did indeed have a good experience thanks to UEFA. The sun shone, the vast majority of fans enjoyed a few (many) drinks, an atmosphere of anticipation and the prospect of their club picking up one of soccer's top trophies.

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Welcome, Welcome, Welcome

The blog is back in business today with three special welcomes.

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