Learning life’s lessons in the student union

I don’t get disaffection. I don’t get apathy. I never have. What’s the point? When I was a student, a long time ago now, anyone who was anyone was involved in the students’ union. The “hacks”, as student politicians were known at my red-brick university were, by far, the most talented and charismatic of us […]

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The only way is up for Glasgow

Very good to see the piece by Gordon Matheson, leader of Glasgow city council, in Saturday’s EG, talking about the Glasgow 2014 Legacy Framework, created in 2009 with the aim of making Glasgow a “more prosperous, active, inclusive, accessible, greener place, with a greater international outlook”. He lays out a vision for economic growth in […]

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Join the Community Land Trust movement

My lovely friend, Rachel Fisher over at the National Housing Federation, who may be a Texan but who is ever the champion of the bottom-up, draws my attention to the community land trust (CLT) people, the National CLT Network, launching a bidding process to the Urban CLT Project. This is a brand new programme of […]

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Prague’s fine example of urban history

It had been a hectic few weeks in the run-up to my own modest summer holiday this year.  So it was a great relief to get away for a few days in the Bohemian city of Prague, for some much needed R&R. The guidebooks all advise that August is a bad time to visit Prague: […]

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New brief for Team Clark… mission accomplished

Forgive my absence. I said I would come back and report on the Cabinet reshuffle from my vantage point in there, and I just couldn’t get around to it, due to so much stuff needing to be sorted before the summer break. And then I went on my own holiday (Prague. Very hot. Hugely fascinating. […]

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A suitable job for a woman

So… I’ve been a feminist all my adult life. Which, in effect, means I’ve been a feminist right from the very first day that I first learned of gender inequality (I was brought up by rather a feisty working mum, who rose through the ranks to become the principal of an FE college. So the […]

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Thinking positive in the garden of England

Last week was full of excitements all right, including a jolly jaunt to Kent on Thursday afternoon to hear Lord Heseltine and Paul Carter, among other luminaries, address “Home Truths”, a conference held with Localis, on housing delivery in the South East LEP region. It was an excellent event. And very timely of course, straight after the […]

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After years of despair, optimism abounds

It was a huge privilege on Monday to sit in the box at the back of the Speaker’s Chair to hear Greg Clark give his triumphant statement to the House of Commons, as he said these stirring words “The components of each growth deal will transform the prospects of local economies. However, the whole is […]

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“Sorry mum, I’ll be in Brum with the PM”

I’m sorry I’ve been absent from the blog for a few days. I just haven’t had time. Close observers will know that I’ve been up to my ears in Greg Clark’s “Devolution Revolution” and frankly I’ve barely slept. We’ve all been running around like mad things. There have been all-nighters and working weekends. So I’ve been […]

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Tangible plans for the North

It’s only Tuesday and already this week there’s been a lot of excitement in the Greg Clark camp.  You must have seen we’ve been larging it up in the North with our MOST senior leaders. David Cameron and George Osborne and Lord Heseltine were ALL in attendance at a meeting in Manchester yesterday with minister for […]

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