Working poverty: is a living wage enough?

Article published: Wednesday, September 19th 2012

The success of campaigns by London Citizens and others have raised fresh interest in the idea of a living wage. As Manchester City Council bump up the minimum wage for their lowest paid workers to £7.15, with Trafford following suit, living wage activist Barney Wakefield gives his take on its strengths and weaknesses.

Elected mayors: a sticking plaster on the north-south divide

Article published: Tuesday, May 1st 2012

Referendums on whether or not to have directly elected mayors will take place in 10 English cities this week. Underlying the political gamesmanship, the elected mayors issue reveals a delusional approach to the north south divide.

Reclaiming whose city?

Article published: Wednesday, April 4th 2012

A fortnight ago, MULE reported on the arrest of six people who had squatted the disused Kro2 bar on Oxford Road against plans to turn the site into a Tesco – and more broadly against the steady “corporate takeover” of the city centre. How do incoming proposals to criminalise squatting in residential properties relate to Manchester’s shifting character? And what are the underlying forces behind these changes?

Greater Manchester climate change plans: Business as usual

Article published: Friday, October 21st 2011

Greater Manchester’s local authorities are affirming official schemes to reduce carbon emissions. But so far their plans appear more aspirational than actual, and driven by the interests of business rather than preparing the city for a sustainable future.

Lowest common denominator politics: the cuts and the myths of welfare dependency

Article published: Friday, April 8th 2011

As the massive turnout for the March 26 demonstration in London proved, the cuts are proving to be extremely unpopular, even before they’ve really begun to bite. The coalition anticipated this, and have been expending a great deal of energy since they entered office in creating scapegoats. After all, people might otherwise begin to ask [...]

Manchester’s Certain Future?

Article published: Wednesday, December 8th 2010

It has been one whole year since Manchester City Council launched its climate change action plan, ‘A Certain Future’, so what has been achieved in that time, and where do things go from here? This was the question that was supposed to be answered on November 30, at the first annual stakeholder conference held at [...]

It’s Xmas – Welcome to Manchester Plc

Article published: Friday, November 20th 2009

Businesses in the centre of Manchester must wish it could be Christmas every day. Or to be more precise, that the Christmas shopping period came more frequently. They got an early present of their own this week, when the Council proudly announced it will be providing city-centre shops with a free marketing campaign worth £600,000.