Harder Than It Looks

Back to the subject of Greater Manchester's Whole Place Community Budget pilot. Much of today and yesterday has been taken up with looking in detail at work currently taking place in Manchester as part of the city-region wide effort.

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Boom City?

Given the relatively recent history of the city, Boom City would not be my favourite description of what we have achieved over the last decade, but it is undoubtedly the case that for the last ten years we have been the fastest growing city in the country. We are a growing city, and we are a young city, both reflecting Manchester's successful economic transformation, job creation, and resilience through the recession. Of course a growing population does create the odd difficulty, for example the shortage of school places and shortage of housing that we now have.

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Trouble Ahead, Trouble Behind

Full Council today. It started off with a pleasant, formal event - the installation of former councillor Keith Whitmore as an Honorary Alderman. Keith stood down from the Council in May after 33 years and all members of the Council were delighted to support the honouring of this long and distinguished public service. The meeting then became very much more serious.

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Back to Basics

One of the strengths of our current system of local government ( as compared say to the various Mayoral models ) is that the Leader of the Council is still a ward councillor and does everything a ward councillor does. So today's post is only back to basics in the sense I haven't blogged about local stuff for a bit. This afternoon it's Crumpsall Ward Co-ordination Group, the quarterly meeting between Crumpsall councillors, officers who manage council services in the neighbourhood, and the police to scrutinise progress against our ward plan.

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Art for Art's Sake ?

After a couple of depressing days looking at welfare reform, something to cheer me up last night with the official opening of the National Football Museum at Urbis. It's around three years ago that the then Chief Executive of the now defunct North West Development Agency approached the Council to see if we could help secure the future of the National Football Museum at a time when the very existence of the museum was under severe threat. We looked at the options but the only one that worked practically and financially was to use Urbis.

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The ( shadow ) Health and Well-Being Board met this morning. It had a number of significant items on the agenda ( reports can be accessed on the Council's website ) but probably the most significant was a very long and detailed report on integration of Health and Social Care backed by a joint presentation from a Council officer, a GP, and a health administrator on work going on in central Manchester to reduce unnecessary admissions to hospital through better and more joined up community health services. Similar work is going on in North and South Manchester.

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