Manchester City Council

Jam Today and Jam Tomorrow

First job this morning was putting a new inner-tube in my rear tyre. A puncture on Tuesday left me with a long walk home pushing the bike up Cheetham Hill and today was the first chance I'd had to fix it. Spend half-an-hour in the Town Hall before nipping off to the Airport for the Etihad announcement that they have decided to locate their European Contact Centre in Manchester. The announcement is made in the Etihad lounge in Terminal One which means there is the whole kerfuffle of getting airside but it's worth it for a development that will create an initial 160 jobs in the city.

There were bids from around the world for this centre ( it doesn't have to be in Europe ) and it was fiercely competitive. What swung in Manchester's favour in the end was the availability of the right language skills in the city and the training support we could give. Yet another example of why we are right to prioritise skills in the Greater Manchester Strategy. As well as being good news in itself it shows that Manchester continues to compete globally on both cost and quality. Just after the press conference, news came through confirming that Airport City had been designated as the Enterprise Zone for Greater Manchester referred to in yesterday's budget statement. The zone allows new businesses to benefit from a subsidy of up to £55,000 per business for up to five years, but more importantly it allows us to capture the growth in business rates in the zone for twenty five years to be reinvested in the Manchester city-regions economy. This " tax increment financing " arrangement is something we and the other English Core Cities have been lobbying for for sometime and so is very welcome. Think I'll stick to good news today so I'll skip from morning to late afternoon when I meet Kay ( Baroness ) Andrews, the relatively new chair of English Heritage. We've developed a very good relationship with EH over the years although not unsurprisingly we are not always in total agreement. The Council alone has over two hundred listed buildings in its estate and we recognise the importance that looking after our heritage plays in the city's future. As a Minister in the previous government Kay argued strongly for recognition of the important role arts and culture ( including heritage ) play in economic development and regeneration and so I'm sure we'll have a very positive discussion.

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There are 16 responses to “Jam Today and Jam Tomorrow”

  1. Dave Bishop Says:

    " ... we recognise the importance that looking after our heritage plays in the city's future"

    I wonder if you mentioned Hough End Hall in Chorlton to Baroness Andrews? I'm sure that she would be impressed by the way that this priceless Jacobean manor house has been almost completely obscured and dominated by hideous modern buildings. Every time I pass it it symbolises to me the contempt that this city appears to have for its heritage!

  2. Anon Says:

    "First job this morning was putting a new inner-tube in my rear tyre" - well, maybe if the roads were maintained you wouldn't have gotten a puncture in the first place! I've been waiting 2 weeks for a pothole to be fixed that buckled both of my wheels!

  3. Manchester Man Says:

    About two weeks ago I reported a poor road surface on Northmoor Road using the on-line form at
    The automatic response told me that the road would be inspected within five working days. In fact the repair work started in five working days and has been completed.
    I was, and am, impressed.

  4. OldFella Says:

    Fantastic news, as we move forward leaving this long last bleak winter behind us.

    Like you, Sir Richard, I have become a Mancunian, and wherever I go, and when online, I'm proud to say that I'm from Manchester. There's a lot to be proud of.

  5. Tomisfedupwithblog Says:

    Someone mentioned in another posting that there are less comments on these pages now than used to be, and offered various explanations. My explanation would be the utter cynicism of comments made. Can we not allow some posts from Sir RL without constantly shooting down all comments? A mention about cycling to work and we have a go re potholes etc etc. I know we need to comment and maybe make criticisms but this level of petty response and simple getting at SRL is why I no longer participate in the blog on the whole. The blog is no longer a place for debate, just a place to try and score points against SRL, who I think has been refreshingly honest in his posts and is working in a tough job.

  6. sue edwards Says:

    Delighted more jobs are coming to the city but what about the lack of jobs at scales 1 - 5 in the city? We are supporting too many overpaid managers and more are to be appointed. Get more people in at the bottom and give the youth of this city a chance to get a foothold. And give more hours to those currently working part-time at this level. We need frontline staff.

  7. ex Council cyclist Says:

    Why is it always the back tyre that gets punctured! Far more difficult to deal with than the front. If you carry a spare inner you can get going straight (ish) away and repair the other later, when convenient...

  8. SK Says:

    I would like to see the council take a more active role in the preservation listed buildings and am particularly looking forward to the council exercising what power it has to ensure a stable future (and reuse) of London Road Fire Station. I would also point out the chapel on Upper Brook Street as an example of a fine old building in desperate need of some attention.

  9. Paul F Says:

    Hi Sir Richard, bit off topic this but...
    Are council staff being given the day off for the royal wedding?
    It would be a great shame if we weren't able to support our future king on his wedding day.

  10. Hmmm Says:

    Sounds promising and as for your bike, if it's a mountain bike (probably not) but if it is i suggest you invest in some tubless tyre's, rims and stans liquid, it's awesome stuff the latex liquid covers any minor puncture's and keeps the tyre inflated, or if it's a road bike learn to take your tyre off and on with your hands, keep a pump attached to your top tube and never use tyre levers (they cause more puntures than there worth -_-)
    It's a 2 minute job, well it is for me but im a fully qualified race mechanic :P

  11. mpeopledesignedtomystify Says:

    Paul F - it is a bank holiday ie day off; usual rules apply

  12. mpeopledesignedtosouldestroy Says:

    yes, the chapel on u.brook.street should be knocked down as it is an eye sore near to all those Ferrari's

  13. Anon Says:

    Paul F - the Royal Wedding Friday 29 April is a bank holiday so this will be a "day-off" for all staff

  14. nonbiker Says:

    Yes 'hmmm', 'probably not a mountain bike', everyone knows sir richard rides a bmx.

  15. tempting Says:

    Royal wedding isn't a day off for 'temporary' staff, they have to take it from their measly 20 days holiday

  16. Jaani Says:

    I agree with Sue Edwards....:)



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

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