Friday, 11 May 2007

Council talk goes face-to-face

There seems to be something seriously wrong with the way Salford City Council is organised if to speak to a local offical face to face you have to do so by visiting your local library and talk to them via a tv screen. A lot of people continue to wonder why the main council offices are located in Swinton in the first place and not in the centre of the city. For most Salford residents a trip to Swinton involves a lengthy two journey bus ride. I guess a broader issue, created by the restructuring of local government in the early 1970s, is that since the abolition of town and parish councils, the first level of government an ordinary citizen encounters is at a local authority level, which are relatively big and complex institutions. People are unlikely to bump into local council officials on the street, or are they likely to even know who does and doesn't work for the council.

There are still people within Irlam, though who remain upset about the decision to abolish Irlam town council and merge the area with Salford by taking it out of Lancashire. Functionally, in terms of work, social and cultural life, I guess most people have more connection with either Manchester or Warrington, and rarely venture into Salford, unless it is to deal with the council or to access health services. It is perhaps no surprise therefore, that few local people identify with Salford as a place.

Source: Council talk goes face-to-face - Technology - News - Manchester Evening News

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