Making a Contribution

Can't believe it's a week since I last posted and feeling very guilty as a consequence. Has been a busy week and isn't going to get any easier. Spent some time in Liverpool at the beginning of the week at the Labour Party conference, there as always to promote Manchester and Manchester's interests.

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Brave New World

Just for a change catching up with yesterday, and now for the second time, as I got half way through this when the system crashed - not unusual in the Town Hall but we have a plan to change that. First meeting of the day was with our ( Crumpsall and Blackley Village ) ward co-ordination team and our ( North Manchester ) Area Regeneration Manager going through the operating arrangements post cuts restructure and down sizing of the Regeneration division and checking through the regeneration priorities for the ward.

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Music, Money and Masterplanning

An enormous turn out this morning for the unveiling of a statue of Fryderyk Chopin, a monument not only to the great Polish composer, but also to the contributions Poles have made to this city over very many years. The Polish Ambassador did the unveiling and speakers included the Polish Foreign Minister, and the very grand occasion is followed by a lunch and recital of Chopin's music in the Town Hall.

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Difficult Decisions

On the train to London at the moment heading for a meeting of the LG( Local Government )Group Executive. Some substantial items on the agenda including schools funding and the implications of the Health and Social Care Bill currently going through parliament for local authorities and the people we represent. However I feel I need to spend some time on yesterday and particularly on yesterday's Council Executive. There were a number of significant items discussed but I want to talk about just two, both concerning the cuts the Council is having to make.

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Twenty Eight Years later

A pleasant start to the day, in Blackley Village, for the opening of a new Co-op shop, just a few metres down the road from the old Blackley Co-op building which closed, I'm reliably informed by long-standing village residents, twenty eight years ago.

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Broadcasting to the World

Spend an hour or so this afternoon at Media City with Peter Salmon the head of BBC North. The buildings of course have had some possibly unwelcome attention of late, winning the Carbuncle award but I'm not going to comment on the architecture, as I'm rather more concerned about what's going on inside the buildings with what is a very,very important development for the Manchester city-region.

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Only one meeting today but it's an important one. I won't need to remind regular readers of this blog about the horrendous challenges faced by the Council in setting a budget for the current financial year and 2012/13 following the grant settlement set by central government at the beginning of the calendar year.

Read more: Priorities