HOME   ARCHIVE   GALLERY   SHOP   ABOUT US      
 

 
PEEL HOLDINGS SALFORD ELECTION
 

issue 7

Dance With The Devil!
 
We exclusively reveal how mega-bucks company Peel Holdings is trying to influence this year's local election...


"I'd like to explain our position" says Mike Butterworth, Peel Holdings' Property Director "and then you can consider to what extent you are prepared to dance with the devil."

Peel Holdings is certainly one beast of a company. With an estimated £6billion worth of assets, it's got massive interests in Salford and beyond, which include owning the Trafford Centre, Media City, Barton Airport, the Ship Canal, a slice of Salford Reds new stadium complex and huge chunks of Salford's green belt which are about to be developed into a racecourse/hotel complex and a freight terminal.

Peel is going to extraordinary lengths to protect those interests in the run up to the forthcoming local elections, trying to influence local media coverage and, in Butterworth's words, "picking a fight" with elected councillors to stop a policy which might affect its obscene profits.

The policy is congestion charging - which aims to make motorists pay for having their cars on the road at certain times of day, matched with major improvements to public transport - but the principles go much deeper than that.

Whether anyone's for or against the congestion charge isn't at stake here. This is about a huge company using its power and money to put its vested interests at the forefront of a local election, rather than issues that might be more directly important to the community, such as housing, education or…let's think… the protection of Salford's precious green belt.

Mike Butterworth, and his sidekick, Gordon McKinnon, Peel's Director of Operations, have been holding meetings with local political parties that are standing candidates in opposition to the Labour Party, offering to help unseat councillors who are in favour of the congestion charge.

"The forthcoming elections are a big opportunity" Butterworth said at one recent meeting "What can we do to help you guys?"

Butterworth explained just why Peel is so against congestion charging, which boiled down to protecting its real estate interests at Media City…"we don't want to see anything done that will slow it down, hamper it or make it less attractive"…and the possibility of companies around the Trafford Centre having to increase wages to their workers…"I can't say that a lot of them are particularly well paid and people won't be able to afford this charge, so it will affect our ability to draw people in to working here…"

Butterworth put to the meeting a number of ways in which the parties could "dance with the devil". First he mentioned `colluding' with a local newspaper to do a survey asking councillors who are due for election if they were in favour of the charge or not…then he offered the services of political lobbyists and a PR firm to do the survey. Finally he specifically targeted Roger Jones, the Labour councillor for Irlam and chairman of the GMPTE, which is attempting to bring in the charge.

"There is another way of partly skinning the same cat in that Roger Jones is up for re-election - he's bricking it over it, he's rattled" Butterworth said "He has a majority of 200 or something like that, it's nothing. It's almost inconceivable that with a bit of the right kind of publicity he can't be turfed out*…"

Butterworth then revealed details of a telephone survey of 300 people, paid for by Peel and done through market research firm, Aspect, which showed 60% of people who voted for Jones at the last election won't vote for him again if he introduces the congestion charge.

"He knows we've done the survey and is very upset about it, and I've had the chief exec of Salford Council asking what we're up to but at some point we're going to release this information" he added, asking "What's your relationship like with the Salford Advertiser?"

"My impression of the Salford Advertiser is that they didn't particularly carry any great weight of support for Roger Jones" he continued "But if at some point we worked it out between us and we release this information about the survey, and that was before or after - depending on the tactics - some sort of release by you guys saying `This is wrong, and Roger Jones is wrong'…You guys could have so much fun…"

Whether anything was actually put into practice will be seen in the run up to the local election in May. But this does reveal how big business tries to influence and sway the media and political agenda towards its own interests.

"I think it's an abuse of democracy" said Salford Council Leader, John Merry, when we revealed details of Peel's plan "From the point of view of trying to buy an election…the only way it would work is if you think that the people of Salford are going to vote on something solely on the basis of congestion charging…Now I happen to think the people of Salford are more intelligent than that…"

Meanwhile, Peel aren't the only ones trying to interfere with the media agenda. At a recent Salford Council offshoot meeting we understand that control of the Salford Advertiser was discussed…

"I think people - not me - were saying that the Advertiser is perceived by sections as being very negative and misleading in some coverage" explained John Merry "People were saying how we need to influence how the Advertiser was portraying Salford…"

Politics, with a capital `P', is a dirty business. Makes you want to have a bath at the thought of it…Meanwhile, Peel continue to be involved in `skinning cats' and `dancing with the devils'.

Being non political, the Salford Star neither endorses nor opposes any candidate at the local election in May. We do, however, urge everyone in Salford to vote on issues that matter the most.
  

Graphic by Jamie Reid

 

Cassie Baker wrote
at 1:34:23 AM on Monday, January 10, 2011
Peel Industries,Peel Energy,are in the same bowl, they lie and cheat to obtain money to line their our pockets.
 
Liverpool Preservation Trust wrote
at 6:40:46 AM on Friday, March 26, 2010
http://liverpoolpreservationtrust.blogspot.com/2010/03/salford-star-tells-it-like-it-is.html Salford Star Respect for your Honesty
 
Please enter your comment below:
 
 
 
Salford Star Hoodies
Salford Star contact
Deli Lama
advertisement
 
Contact us
phone: 07957 982960
Facebook       Twitter
 
 
Recent comments
article: SALFORD RED DEVILS AUDITOR ‘CASTS DOUBT’ ABOUT ‘COMPANY’S ABILITY TO CONTINUE’
Well done on those accounts, praise to The Club. I would suggest a leap forward can be to create the Salford Red Devils Sports Aca... [more]
article: SALFORD RED DEVILS AUDITOR ‘CASTS DOUBT’ ABOUT ‘COMPANY’S ABILITY TO CONTINUE’
Piss Taker Koucash it was your club but you didn’t want to loose your money so you walked away, now finding out when the club can ... [more]
article: HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE PACK SAVE OUR SALFORD NURSERIES MEETING
Just a reminder of the social event with Paul Dennett this Thursday for a meeting of informal discussions. If you have a question... [more]
article: SALFORD RED DEVILS AUDITOR ‘CASTS DOUBT’ ABOUT ‘COMPANY’S ABILITY TO CONTINUE’
Wow strike me down with a feather - I am staggered that Dr. Koucash put that much money into the club. I can't see the club ever b... [more]
article: SALFORD RED DEVILS AUDITOR ‘CASTS DOUBT’ ABOUT ‘COMPANY’S ABILITY TO CONTINUE’
Speaking as a fan and not a reporter, If we continue increasing the gates which we have shown can be done after one game 6500 atte... [more]
 
 
 
 
 
Days
Hours
Minutes
Seconds
 
 
 

Donate

Help the Salford Star...

all donations welcome

 
 

More articles...

SALFORD RED DEVILS AUDITOR ‘CASTS DOUBT’ ABOUT ‘COMPANY’S ABILITY TO CONTINUE’

Star date: 19th February 2018

SALFORD REDS ACCOUNTS SHOW ALMOST £9MILLION LIABILITIES

New accounts published for the Salford Red Devils show that the company made losses of over £700,000 last year and that it has net liabilities of almost £9million, including the £1million loan from Salford City Council.

Despite the directors insisting that restructures and changes within the club forecast a 'modest profit', its auditor states that the conditions "indicate the existence of a material uncertainty which may cast significant doubt about the company's ability to continue as a going concern".

Full details here...

SALFORD DESIGNER REACHES FINAL OF LIBERTY LONDON TALENT SEARCH

Star date: 18th February 2018

SALFORD MISSHANDLED IN 3-D

Salford's Amanda Tiller, founder of MissHandled, has beat off over nine thousand entrants to reach the final in a search by iconic department store, Liberty London, to find the best untapped interior design talent.

Amanda does hand-made 3-D geometric home accessories, and her wild and wonderful jesmonite Object of Desire has impressed Liberty buyers, who are now asking the public to help sway their vote before they reveal the winner.

Full details here...

HIDDEN SALFORD WORKING CLASS MOVEMENT LIBRARY REVEALED

Star date: 18th February 2018

FOR SALFORD PEOPLE WHO HAVE ALWAYS MEANT TO VISIT 'THAT BIG VICTORIAN HOUSE ON THE CRESCENT'...

On Friday 23rd February between 2pm and 5pm, Salford's 'hidden gem' Working Class Movement Library is holding a drop-in as part of a HiDDEN8 event.

"If you've kept meaning to drop into that big Victorian house on the Crescent, today's the day" states Lynette from the Library "We're targeting Salfordians who've always meant to come in for a nosey." Not to be missed.

Full details here...

HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE PACK SAVE OUR SALFORD NURSERIES MEETING

Star date: 17th February 2018 

MEETING VOTES TO TAKE ON SALFORD MAYOR IF NURSERY CLOSURE CONSULTATION GOES AHEAD

Despite pleas from Salford City Mayor, Paul Dennett, and various Labour councillors to work together to save the five Salford Council nurseries threatened with closure, a packed meeting of hundreds of people voted this afternoon to lobby and protest against the Council unless a consultation on the closures is stopped.

"They can't have a consultation to close the nurseries, and ask us to have a joint campaign" said UNISON's Ameen Hadi "The two things can't happen..."

Full details here...

PETER HOOK AND THE LIGHT TO DO NEW ORDER ALBUMS IN MANCHESTER

Star date: 17th February 2018

HOOKY REVISITS NEW ORDER LIVE

Salford star, Peter Hook, is to perform New Order albums Technique and Republic with his band, The Light, at Albert Hall Manchester on 29th September. Hooky has garnered a massive following touring the world with previous Joy Division and New Order material, and his live shows have met with huge critical acclaim.

Full details here...

 



written and produced by Salfordians for Salfordians
with attitude and love xxx