Manchester City Council

An Ordinary Day

At least compared to yesterday! After porridge and honey and a gentle bike ride into the Town Hall, the day starts with the regular meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Co-ordinating Committee.

We discuss how O&S committees are going to scrutinise the Council's departmental business plans as we go through the budget cycle and how they are going to examine new government policy initiatives in the light of the upcoming comprehensive spending review. Staying with that second theme my next meeting is about changes we might need to make to the operation of the Manchester Partnership to reflect new policies and new legislation. Will say very little about the next meeting as it is judging Employee of the Year for the Council's Awards for Excellence to be announced in October. Next up is looking at alternative approaches to the Metrolink stop in St.Peter's Square and how we might manage the second crossing (Metrolink - City Centre) with minimum impact on the area around the Town Hall.

Later it's the monthly meeting of AGMA Chair and Vice-Chairs which is largely a planning meeting for next week's Executive Meeting. Then it's some filming for Marketing Manchester on what we are doing to improve quality of life and tackle worklessness across the city-region and after that I talk to Radio Manchester about the London Road Fire Station and why we are pursuing compulsory purchase. In between all this I read and answer e-mails, deal with correspondence, take phone calls, and talk to a number of people who drop in for what I suppose are mini-meetings. The day ends with a reception to celebrate Bank of New York/Mellon's first five years in Manchester. As I say, an ordinary day.

There are 14 responses to “An Ordinary Day”

  1. Dave Bishop Says:

    While you are looking at the impact of Metrolink on St.Peter's Square, Sir Richard, I wonder if you would also consider giving some attention to the horrendous impact that Metrolink will have on the Mersey Valley and its increasingly embattled wildlife?

  2. Miffed Says:

    Yet another two hour journey into work this morning. Mr Leese, your East Manchester metrolink is the stuff nightmares of made of.

  3. Richard Leese Says:

    Worth noting that much of the wildlife habitat in the Mersey Valley in the area where Metrolink will run was created relatively recently as a by-product of the construction of the M60 and rail corridors often act as wild life reserves. Leave the car at home Miffed or stop moaning!

  4. Miffed Says:

    I catch the bus Mr Leese. I've been encouraged to do so by my employer, Manchester City Council. If I did drive a car and, as you have advised, I left it at home and stopped 'moaning' (stunning choice of words there, by the way), how do you suppose I would make the 17 mile journey into work every day? I've already invested in an annual bus ticket because I can't afford the train due to having my wages slashed. I'll remain miffed for as long as I want about the whole ludicrous metrolink situation, if its all the same to you.

  5. bicolouredpythonrocksnake Says:

    Crumbs! If motorways and railways are so good for wildlife, imagine how much good an extra runway might do! The future's bright; the future's concrete.

  6. realist Says:

    Miffed, 2 hours, come on, that doesn't include stopping off at mcdonalds for your brekki, where on earth are you driving from? Just moaning for moanings sake. Get up earlier. Be positive about the tram link, it's great. I'm with you Mr Leese on this one.

  7. Pay Attention Says:

    Might I suggest, "realist", that if you are going to comment on someone else's posts, then at least have the decency to read them properly first.

  8. i love jack russels Says:

    Talking of green concerns, can I ask the leader why a large number of very large mature trees are currently being chopped down all along Ashtree Road and Crumpsall Lane in his ward ?

  9. Miffed Says:

    Realist, I get up at 6am to feed and clothe my son. Then I hop on a bus to Ashton, then another bus to Manchester and, finally, a bus out to the area where I work. I've never once stopped off for 'brekkie' at McDonalds because I actually give a hoot about what I put inside my body. As for complaining for complaining's sake, I'm afraid I heartily disagree with you. My complaint is valid and reflects the opinion of many commuters who are struggling to get to work due to immensely frustrating roadworks on Ashton New Road.

  10. Dave Bishop Says:

    If the Mersey Valley wildlife reserves were 'created recently' as you claim, Sir Richard what were the great Manchester botanists, such as Richard Buxton and Leo Grindon, studying when they explored the 'Meadows around Jackson's Boat' more than 150 years ago? The fact is that some of the plants that they knew are still there - in a few cases in the places where they found them! And that is in spite of the strenuous efforts made to destroy this wildlife over the last few decades.
    And in case you tell me that this proves that 'wildlife is very resilient' or something, I think that it's time for better conservation efforts - not more destruction!

  11. Keep It Real Says:

    Miffed, could it be time for you to leave the Council because of the obvious stress caused by the 'slash' in salary and the crippling journey commitments and move to the countryside where there is little or no traffic.

    I love working in one of the greatest cities in the world, but with that you have to accept the fact that lots and lots of other people want to work in this great city. There will always be infrastructure improvements and plenty of ‘miffed’ people. I agree with previous posts; if you relax a little, life gets much better.

    Try a similar journey in Liverpool or Birmingham then you may be in a position to comment on inner city traffic and commute times.
    If you say there are other commuters in a similar position get some sort of petition going on the local bus/train/skateboard.
    PS. I do hope that your entries to this blog were not done on tax payer time?

  12. Miffed Says:

    A Realist / Keep it Real, I'm bowing out of this debate because you clearly want to turn it into a mudslinging competition. If you can't use reason and logic then I'm not prepared to continue the discussion.

  13. Cllr. Con Keegan Says:

    In response to 'I love Jack Russels' I could go into extensive detail as to the situation regarding the trees on Ash Tree Road. However, I have instead attached a copy of a wonderful poem by a longstanding Crumpsall resident who puts offers a far more eloquent summary./ Aches and Paves by Jo Graham / We rubbed our ankles and our knees / Stumbling ‘neath gigantic trees, / As deep cracks in tarmac grew / And sturdy roots came into view. / Chemists prescribed where e’er we went, / ‘Massage a spot of liniment./’ We rubbed and scrubbed with stuff from Boots / To rid our road of rampant roots. / Seeing broken nails and smelly brushes / Our neighbours came to spare our blushes. / ‘Liniment’s limited in its uses,’ / They told us. ‘Actually, it’s for bruises! / ‘Now, if you have a pavement problem, / You’ve got three councillors. Go and nobble ‘em./ People now are prone to sue / For money taxed from us and you!’/ Five long years, with patience, we / Tripped and slipped from tree to tree: / Folks with walking sticks and brollies / Kiddies bouncing in their trolleys. / Then, A letter arrives (beyond belief!) / – A decision’s been made by a Mr Leaf / – Phase one: Ten dangerous trees will be cut down / to be replaced by TWELVE more suitable ones! /(Honouring the council’s promise repeated over the years.) / The waiting’s over. Work’s begun! / Yet this, it seems, displeases some. / With their roads ‘new-furbished’ with trees and the rest, / Our nearest neighbours rose up in protest. / The media came and exposed their simplicity (or innocence) / By giving this group a spot of publicity. / “Let the trees grow beautiful and tall.”/ (The taller the trees the harder they’ll fall!) / “Do as I would. Pick up your feet.” / (What! Should we go goose-stepping down the street?) / The owners of these comments know ‘who they be’ / So look from your window and gaze at YOUR tree. / You’d pluck from your garden a plant past its prime. / So too for a tree at the end of its time. / The image of Ash Tree Road needs some ‘First Aid’/ And steps to improve it are now being made./ Ignore the doubters. Don’t listen to mewing. /Trust in the councillors – they know what they’re doing!

  14. i love jack russels Says:

    Thanks for the posting Cllr Keegan - I can't say I haven't had a full response, and in rhyme too. I'm pleased that new trees are going to be planted in their place, and it's true that the pavements are a little knobbly in Crumpsall. Hadn't realised it was tree roots though - thought it was where Virgin Media kept digging them up!



The blog of the leader of Manchester City Council, Councillor Richard Leese.

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