Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Let them Eat Cake

Times are tough in Birmingham. It's Conservative run council appear to be setting about the business of cutting back the state with particular glee.

Every one of their  26,000 council staff are told they must accept new contracts or they will face compulsory redundancy. The axe has been sharpened, now, they must simply wait to see where it falls. All they know is, there will be a "significant reduction of the workforce."

It's OK though - the Conservative council leader Mike Whitby at least offered some comfort to his colleagues. He told them they still had reason for optimism : "We have more Michelin-star chefs than any city outside London."

That's OK then.

#realitycheck    #sympathybypass  #Toryfail


  1. Times are tough everywhere Sue-perhaps you hadn't noticed.

    How would AD's cuts have avoided impacting Local Authorities?

    And in case the good people of Birmingham (where I lived for many years) become too upset at your 18th century famine portrayal of their condition , perhaps I can provide some of the good news which that great City of historic Civic Pride has received recently :-

    Work has begun on a £27m regeneration scheme for Shard End in Birmingham.
    The project to create an 'urban village' will include new homes, shopping centre, library and community facilities.

    Birmingham Cabinet Member for Housing, Cllr John Lines, described it as a "huge boost for local people".

    The council worked with the Homes and Communities Agency, City Housing Partnership and developers Barratt West Midlands to secure funding.
    Birmingham City Council says the village will contain 2,000 square metres of retail and leisure space .

    The development also includes a new library
    Cllr Lines said it was the result of years of planning and development.

    The Homes and Communities Agency provided £4.8m towards the scheme, with £1m coming from Birmingham City Council and £150,000 from the City Housing Partnership through the Working Neighbourhoods Fund.

    £21m has been invested by Barratt West Midlands.

    Louise Collette, Assistant Director for Strategic Services and Housing at the council said: "It's a real example of what can be achieved by the private sector and public sector working together."

    She pointed out that the development should also benefit the local economy.

    "It should be a real boost for local jobs, there are apprenticeships associated with this scheme and there are on-going opportunities for local suppliers and local trades people, so it really should have that long term economic benefit for the area," she said.

    It's hoped the first properties at the development will be ready for occupation in March 2011.

    and secondly :-

    Birmingham City Council was named overall winner at last night's Personnel Today Awards ceremony at the Park Lane Hilton in London. Praised for its "innovative approach" to utilising and engaging talent, the UK's largest local authority won top prize after scooping the award for excellence in public sector HR.

    The judges said that they were particularly impressed by Birmingham City Council's ambitious and intelligent programme for change and commended the council for driving efficiency through every part of the process.

    After receiving the award, councillor Alan Rudge, cabinet member for equalities and human resources at Birmingham City Council, said: "What we've done is, with very limited resources, we've saved money, boosted the morale of our workforce, given career structure and yet delivered the goods.

    "What a delight it is that Personnel Today gave us the chance to be recognised for that."

    Well done Brum. ;-)

  2. As a Brummie exiled in Weston I don't see anything to celebrate.

    Being forced to accept lower wages , pension right. How things have changed from when I started work in Birmingham, the Labour Council were encouraging graduates to teach in the city and offering 100 % mortgages, hence I was able to but a home where young people today cannot.

    Poor Brum, how many other council swill follow. What a sad day.


  3. Thanks for that posting Sue, it is a very worrying sign indeed.
    Wholescale privatisation, the workers suffer so others can profit at our expense.
    Same old Tories.

  4. Blimey Colin, you're feisty today ;)

    I don't think the people of Birmingham will be too cross if I point out that some senior councillor somewhere said something crass, lol

    Reassuring someone who is about to lose their job that there are plenty of Michelin star chefs is a bit like telling a dying man in the desert that you know he's thirsty, but at least there are all these lovely dates to eat.

    Hardly an "18th century famine portrayal of their condition", lol

  5. Here are a couple more Good News stories for Brum Pam:-

    Have a look at what is happening at Aston Science Park-silicon valley comes to Brum :-)

    HS2 will boost WM economy by £2.5bn , including 10k construction jobs.

    And-hey -its nearly Christmas-which for Brummies means the fantastic Frankfurt Christmas Market-£90 million to the local economy & 3 Million Birmingham!

    And have you been back to see those fantastic developments along the canals right in the City Centre.

    Brum is a vibrant city with resourceful people & the terrific Civic pride which they derive from that great Liberal politician, son of a shoemaker & Civic visionary , Joseph Chamberlain.

    Go Brum ;-)

  6. Sue

    I spent my working career in Brum.

    It was good to me & I retain great affection for it.

    A great City with great people :-)

  7. Colin - I think you're right to point out the terrific progress made in cities like Birmingham, Manchester and Liverpool under a Labour government.
    Many of these cities had their manufacturing hearts ripped out and their traditional industries decimated under Thatcher.
    Labour certainly made regeneration a priority and most would agree that it was one of their more successful policies.
    Many of these cities are unrecognisable compared to 1997

  8. Sue....The regeneration of B/ham started in the 80's, I don't know how you've got the brass neck to claim it for Labour, oh! yes I do, it's part of the self delusional programme initiated by Mandy. :-)

  9. Sue.

    I don't know Manchester or Liverpool.

    I do know Brum.

    I was there through all of the 79/97 Conservative administration , during which time it was transformed .

    I saw the construction of The New Rep, The International Convention Centre, THe National Indoor Arena, and the NEC.


    And Sue recently accused me of trotting out the party line.:-)

    Jeez-where do they get their lobotomies done?

  10. Colin...I didn't like to imply that Manchester was regenerated as a result of an IRA bombing in 1996, since Sue had claimed it for Labour. Too Machiavellian even for Mandy that one. :-)

  11. Colin, Ken - I think I'm on pretty safe ground here. I'm fairly confident that if asked who did the most for their city - Tories 1979-97 or Labour 97-2010, you wouldn't get much ambiguity.

    Probably why they all vote Labour eh?

  12. Bimringgham has never been Labour like Northern towns, nor Tory like the South In the old days of two party politics, my home constituency, Birmingham Yardley always went with the country, almost like a barometer, as indeed was Birmingham itself.
    While I was at university, Norwich South was a safe Labour seat.
    How times have changed, with this surge in the liberals, those days have changed for both seats.
    I would expect things to start moving back again to two party politics as the Libs decline.
    Birmingham has always been split, politically.
    Tonight it will be split again, hope the Blues get beaten tonight... Go Villa!!!

  13. @ Ken
    "Too Machiavellian even for Mandy that one. :-)"

    But not for Sue eh :-)

    No sireeee.

    Is it the propaganda they get from Party HQ do you think?....or those injections :-)

  14. Oh dear they are hunting in pairs tonight Sue.

  15. Pam...Roland and I used to accuse Sue and Amber of hunting in pairs on UKPR. :-)