Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Groundbreaking Day for Morecambe FC

Morecambe FC has commenced work on the site of the Club's new stadium at Westgate, keeping the Shrimps on target to take occupation of their new home in time for commencement of the 2010/11 football season.

It's almost 2 years since MAZE Planning first became involved and 14 months since the formal application for planning permission was submitted to Lancaster City Council.

MFC's Brian Fagan, who is overseeing the construction process, commented personally on MAZE Planning's continued input to the project:

"Thanks for giving this so much attention over a long period of time. Thanks also for your concentrated efforts over the last few weeks which have enabled us to get on site and start the construction process. I have visited the site and it is very pleasing to see the first remodelling taking place"

The commencement of site preparation works at Westgate tops a ground breaking week for the Football Club, which won the accolade of producing 'the best pie in football' after 22 year old football foodie Tom Dickinson visited all 92 football league grounds during the current season on a marathon munch-quest. Tom's travels will provide material for his forthcoming football pastry guide, '92 Pies'. Thanks for keeping it real Tom!

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Northern Powerhouse Economies Get Pilot 'City Region' Status

Alistair Darling's 2009 Budget was always going to be a headline grabbing affair given the parlous state of the economy, but with increasingly tangible signs of stabilisation in the financial and property markets the Chancellor's announcement that Greater Manchester and Leeds will be allowed to pursue pilot 'city-region' arrangements seems like a shred of good news. The proposed changes have the potential to deliver a significant boost to regional confidence and the ability of the two northern powerhouse economies to respond more flexibly to opportunities to attract inward investment as the conditions for recovery take shape.

The elected regions will gain more power over planning, housing, transport, regeneration, employment and skills programmes and will be expected to integrate work across local authority boundaries.

Over the next few months the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA) will begin the preparation of the 'Greater Manchester Strategic Plan' which will set out agreed regional priorities aimed at creating condition to accelerate growth. The pilot will be overseen by government ministers.

Birmingham, Middlesbrough, Bristol, Luton and Sheffield are understood to have just missed out on the pilot scheme after bids from around England were submitted in March. Liverpool has commenced work on its bid for City Region status and is widely anticipated as being likely to secure Government support during the next round of announcements.

Andrew Watt
MAZE Planning Solutions