Guest blog: election special – will turkey’s vote for Christmas?

Tim Garratt.jpgIn the second of our series of elected mayor referendum specials, Nottingham-based Tim Garratt, director at Innes England, gives his view on the much-anticipated referendum on 3rd May and what it could mean for the East Midlands’ capital.



Nottingham is one of the selected cities where there’s a referendum on 3rd May to decide whether to elect a mayor. If the answer is ‘yes’ then the city has a vote in November. A mayor would follow.

The city council got into hot water after spending taxpayers money on a ‘no’ campaign. The leader of the council is fundamentally opposed to the suggestion – principally (I believe) as it will take away some of his power and certainly some of his status.

We have entered a period of small-time politics and spin, in my view. Leaflets delivered talk about the costs (£1m plus) without any detail as to how this is made up! It’s all rather negative.

2012 is a new world. The landscape we work and live in has changed beyond belief – and perhaps the time has come for a new way of working.

Nottingham’s private sector is keen to see Nottingham punch above its weight. Inward investment is something close to the property sector’s heart. A mayor could help with this.

Look what Boris Johnson has done for London – he has raised the profile of the capital city.

Nottingham has an opportunity to raise its game. Prime minister David Cameron is offering a place at the table twice a year for a Mayors Cabinet. Can Nottingham (as a core city) afford not to be there?

My problem with all of this is that the debate is being downplayed. The “yes” campaign only started with less than three weeks to go. The campaigning has had little airing which is a great pity.

turkey pic.jpgI see the mayor as a great opportunity. We should embrace it wholeheartedly. The present leadership won’t agree, because turkeys have never voted for Christmas…




What are your views on elected mayors? Please feel free to leave your comments below.


About Lisa Pilkington

As Deputy Regional Editor/Midlands Editor, I edit and write for the Focus section of the magazine, as well as host our Focus receptions around the country and write for the Focus blog. With my Midlands hat on I also write and plan news and features for the region which are published both in print and online. Broadcast journalism is also a big part of my job - getting out and about with the EGTV camera. If you want to contact me about any of the above then please email me at

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