Published: 30th Mar 2011

It is unfortunate but it is the only date available. The Manchester Combined Authority will be born on 1 April to polite applause from some and scepticism from others. As someone who has seen this newest member of the local government family emerge I want to reflect on my hopes and fears. I am hopeful because I believe that there needs to be a way of councils combining together that does not involve Whitehall. However, I am fearful that it will not capture the public’s imagination in that it may just be seen as another bureaucratic administrative convenience. We are very good at devising new administrative structures in local government and you only have to look back at the Redcliffe Maud Commission, the change of administrative boundaries in 1974 and the abolition of the GLC to realise that we cannot resist a good administrative shakeup. The problem is that we … (To read the full article, subscribe below)