Star date: 6th March 2011 


Over a thousand people attended a rally against the cuts outside Manchester Town Hall yesterday which was addressed by Salford Against The Cuts giving fraternal greetings.

Full story here…

Yesterday over a thousand people demonstrated against the cuts in Manchester – and they were reminded of Salford Council's attempts to cut  public spending by Paul Gerrard, Vice-Chair of Salford Against The Cuts.

Referring to campaigns at Levenshume Baths in Manchester and Unsworth Library in Bury which were both saved by protests before their councils had even voted in the cuts, he denounced Salford City Council for their £40 million cuts package agreed last Wednesday.

"When we were in the public gallery for the budget meeting we noticed that the Council's Latin motto is 'Salus Populi Suprema Lex': 'the welfare of the people is the highest law'" he said "It seems that for the Labour councillors of Salford, Latin is a dead language. It will be for us to bring it to life again on the streets of Salford in the coming months.

"If Manchester and Salford, Liverpool and Leeds, all defied the government there would not be enough commissioners in the land to run these councils" he added "And the workforce would ignore them anyway because they would be on strike."

The campaign against the cuts all over Greater Manchester continues…

Photo by Albert Spiby

Nachtschlepper wrote
at 17:01:09 on 11 March 2011
I know of far too many young Salfordians without the skills to get jobs in the construction industry, I also know of far too many skilled Salfordians out of work. Your optimism is commendable Mr Merry, but I'm affraid totally misguided. As for jobs as executives, dont make me laugh there are no old Etonians, Carthusians or Harrovians in this city.
at 09:49:49 on 11 March 2011
So how Salfordian are Spicer,Walker and Scarlett? That is about £450,000 of wages going to people not from Salford.
John Merry wrote
at 20:03:44 on 10 March 2011
Nachtslepper you surely don't believe that's the only jobs Salfordians are capable of . Why cannot they be the executives the electricians the carpenters that media city will need . One thing is certain our young people are leaving school with better qualifications than before. I don't want to create lots of unskilled poorly paid jobs I want our young people to have jobs with a future. David Andrew is no longer a party member. I find the complaint that the Labour Party practiced entryism by "swamping" a meeting laughable and just to be clear Broughton Branch recently supported a local meeting.
andrew behan wrote
at 20:03:36 on 10 March 2011
Mr Merry, Not a bad Political reply,you have tried to ignore many points and concentrated on my membership status and to alter career councillor to lifetime of service. I rejoined the Labour Party to vote in the Leadership elections (Dianne Abbott)a Socialist candidate. I also wanted to bring in New Membership to Walkden South which gets about 3 people attending meetings.I do not hate the Labour Party or the Labour Councillors but I do get frustrated when I see how you are failing the people of Salford. TUSC fought an excellent campaighn in the 2010 Elections gaining a solid base on which to build this year. I make no apology for my involvement with the Hazel Must go campaighn which brought together hundreds of Salfordians who want Hazel blears run out of Salford. I'm sure the electorate will find the highlighted cuts in the Budget of interest on the doorstep in the coming weeks. To blame the Con-Dems is easy and you have given in to the easy option of rubber stamping these cuts.The hard thing for you now is to convince the Electorate that you had no choice but rest assured we will be out there giving people another twist to the story. SAC is growing apace and I'm sure many more will come forward from within it to challenge at the Local Elections. Just one last thing I will leave you with a word of Wisdom from a former Labour Mayor,'Keep Your Mouth Shut and try not to upset anyone and bide your time and your time will come' Well thats not me!
Nachtschlepper wrote
at 17:00:02 on 10 March 2011
It's strange that a Labour Councillor is now using the same excuses that former Conservative ministers use. I'm sorry, but flipping burgers, answering phones & patroling sites as security guards can in no way guarantee the future prospects for future generations. My original point was that you seem to be wasting money and don't give me the old it's an investment flannel. £20 million is still a monumental amount when you are cutting far more viatl services.
David Henry wrote
at 15:37:41 on 10 March 2011
John, the motion to make an amendment to the campaign's constitution motion to oppose a budget of cuts proposed by Steve North (which I voted for anyway) was thrown out in a public vote - but so was the opposing motion to support the council's decision in favour of neither motion - "abstainers" won. Furthermore Salford Labour Party(ies) have never pledged official support to Salford Against the Cuts from what I can tell, in fact you complained via Twitter after it was stated Broughton CLP was a sponsor and asked for the wording to be changed. I left the SAC meeting in Ordsall last month where these votes took place frustrated and under the impression that Labour Party members had deliberately "swapmed" the meeting in order to push their own agenda. This budget undermines Salford's "Highest Law" - "The Welfare of the People", by setting this budget of cuts as requested by the ConDem regime the council is breaching that "highest law", and that in my eyes is what is illegal. Do you really expect SAC to support the councillors who voted for this action? and is it fair to expect fellow Labour Party members such as Andy Behan to 100% agree?
Brian F Kirkham wrote
at 12:46:08 on 10 March 2011
Hmmm... Providing Services?..Good one that Mr Merry! I'm not discounting your motives. I'm sure they're admirable in producing the best for Salford. But for one minute, lets just take a look around my neck of the woods, Ordsall. When i was growing up it was a thriving community, A Park worthy of the name and a shopping centre. The Piazza provided shops on regent road and we had decent enough educational facilities. But that was twenty odd years ago - now your spin-off housing 'trusts' have led to the destruction of that community and whereas you could have sold the land for another use you knock down a school - to build a school?! where's the logic in that? The developers are turning my district into a patchwork quilt - The misplacement of the new school now makes it look like something akin to the Berlin wall with your high fences on either side..how the heck did that plan get past the planning dept? (or was this merely a fast job enabling LPC to get the land Old radclyffe was standing on?) Also, I notice they're building a Morrisons just across the way from my home - brilliant! and no doubt an inspired move. Does that mean you are planning a new carbuncle on Robert Hall St, because seeing as there is Another Big Name Supermarket sticking itself on another brownfield site (TA LPC!) it might just allow you to get the funds together to provide a library / community centre IN the centre of Ordsall (Not Near the Bridges to Mcr where LPC Claim it is!) - or even re develop the park and complete that road that's a cul-de-sac between the schools...(Just a thought)
John Merry wrote
at 12:45:28 on 10 March 2011
Nachtslepper Its both. We both agree full employment is crucial to the future of the city but I do not believe we will get back the large scale manufacturing that we have lost over the last 40 years. It has gone to the pacific rim countries that pay much lower wages. We need to get jobs from a whole range of companies and it is significant that there are now way more employed on the Quays than were ever employed by the Docks. I think the BBC and its suppliers will provide thousands of jobs and thats why we wanted it.
John Merry wrote
at 12:45:21 on 10 March 2011
Andrew if you hate the Labour Party so much why did you apply to rejoin it? I think that it is quite sad to attack Dave Lancaster in particular who has given a lifetime of service to this city and has been elected many times whereas you with deepest respect failed to get elected in Ordsall. Councillors attended the early meetings of Salford Against the Cuts and yet you are now saying you do not want them involved. We are as opposed to the cuts forced upon this city as you are and yet because you hate the Labour Party so much you want the campaign to focus on the council rather than the real enemy
andrewbehan wrote
at 23:18:03 on 09 March 2011
Mr Merry, I do not understand your comment. So a brief story behind my mistrust of Labour the so called only Left alternative. 2009 Salford CLP fail to de-select Hazel Blears at a farce of a meeting at the Civic (HAZEL MUST GO IS CREATED)!!! October 2009 A Labour Activist Worsley CLP attends a public meeting of the Hazel Must Go. He sees Passion Commitment and real Outrage of The Salford Public. So he writes to his MP for Worsley and Eccles and ask her opinion of the expenses scandal(Silence) January 2010 Walkden South CLP meeting 4 people attend(The seat is not winnable because previous Labour Councillors have sat on their hands in the past) Brendan Ryan is selected by not the Walkden South Labour Party but David Lancaster/Keith Mann Career Councillors(who have earned thousands over the years in allowances from the council and the numerous committees etc) May 2010 Andrew Behan stands in Ordsall against Alan Clague(Who earned £18,000 the previous year representing the Ordsall Ward)Guess what nobody in Ordsall had ever seen him.
Andrew behan wrote
at 23:16:35 on 09 March 2011
Dear Star, I have just checked out the SAC WEBSITE very good.The only issue support from MP's who claimed £400 per month for food.Double that of Hazel Blears,and on that subject was there ever a receipt from the Inland revenue for that £13,000 cheque?
Nachtschlepper wrote
at 15:32:02 on 09 March 2011
Make your mind up at first it was to raise the City's profile, now it will bring in taxes. You want to raise Salfords profile internationally? Then get a premiership foot ball club, I never hear people ask whos' leading the Halle? But the world & his dog knows who manages Manchester United. As for taxes, bring in some real jobs, large employers the like of which Salford has lost over the last forty years. Sure the Council, in conjunction with national government can come up with a plan to attract the kind of comcpany that would employ hundreds if not thousands. Only through cutting out the cancer that is unemplotment will this city be the place it once was. Remember the motto Integrity & Industry?
John Merry wrote
at 15:31:04 on 09 March 2011
So Andrew you want all those who dont agree with you out. Says it all really.
Andrew behan wrote
at 09:08:31 on 09 March 2011
SAC is against the Cuts,there are many varied Political Persuasions involved.But my individual view would be one of outrage when I see Labour councillors trying to get involved with SAC when they Have just Rubber Stamped £40 million pounds of cuts.I urge everybody against these cuts to make a stand at the next Local elections and to oust these so called Councillors.
John Merry wrote
at 08:38:23 on 09 March 2011
Brian we gain the millions in council tax that enables us to provide services.
John Merry wrote
at 08:38:00 on 09 March 2011
I would not criticise anyone for their spelling and indeed Steve has quite rightly pointed out my spelling mistakes. Sorry about the slips. I think what may have caused the confusion Jim is that whoever is the Leader of the council is required to be the Councils representative on a number of bodies and someone listed them claiming I was paid to sit on them when in fact they are part of my council duties.
Pretty Vacant wrote
at 05:42:40 on 09 March 2011
This man Murray cant even spell coming. To me it shouldnt matter but correct me if im wrong but didnt he chastsize the star for allowing spelling mistakes. I hope this will inspire people who cant spell to contribute without fear of being mocked by hypocrites.To me its the point that matters and we all have urges to make our point so cmon.....
Brian Francis Kirkham wrote
at 05:42:06 on 09 March 2011
Can someone tell me - apart from those persons wishing to cream the profits from the area what we're getting out of this? And while i think on... Twenty Million "Sponsorship" of BBC Philharmonic ? Does this mean when the Orchestra does its usual stint at the Royal Albert Hall we'll see banners for BBC North and Salford Council all over the shop - that is usually the reason for any corporate deal - marketing for the sponsor!!!
John Merry wrote
at 05:41:30 on 09 March 2011
I must either remember to fill my name in or stop answering late at night!
at 05:41:24 on 09 March 2011
We are not spending any money on the philamonic this year but the point is that the BBC will bring in far more than it will cost . It will give us more money to spend on the services of this city rather than less
John Merry wrote
at 05:41:06 on 09 March 2011
David I have had no such clarification. If I thought passing a motion would stop the cuts I would do so but it won't and I have a duty to the workforce and the people of this . I wondered how long before you would seek to reverse the previous position . I have urged support for SAC as reported here at the community ctte and at my branch meeting on the basis of what was the majority position . Clearly if you want the campaign to divide rather than unite then I cannot stop you but Labour the largest left group in this city will not be able to be a part of it.
Stephen Higgins wrote
at 05:40:35 on 09 March 2011
The policies of SAtC are clearly laid out in a statement voted for by public meeting, and can be found at http://salfordagainstthecuts.blogspot.com/p/statement-to-salford-city-council.html
Nachtschlepper wrote
at 19:32:23 on 08 March 2011
It beggars belief that anybody can imagine that spending such an out rageous amount on an orchestra while decimating other far more important services does the people of Salford any good. If you really think that such superficial cosmetic surgery will help this city then God heklp the rest of us. Your record thus far Mr Merry hardly bodes well for the future.
David Henry wrote
at 18:27:22 on 08 March 2011
"Wrote" is incorrect. Salford Against The Cuts does NOT support the council's cuts. Thank you Steve for clarifying this, and I echo his congratulations and ongoing support to everyone else fighting this criminal assault on the very fabric of our society. Things have indeed changed since the campaign last discussed it's objectives and the council's recent actions need to be taken into account - not just the needs of the Labour party.
John Merry wrote
at 13:46:08 on 08 March 2011
The BBC comeing to Salford has already proven to be a hugely significant event for the people of this city. Leaving aside the jobs the council tax and associated payments will come to dwarf the sponsorship of the BBC Philamonic. On top of which there is the work done in our schools and elsewhere by the Orchestra. I believe future genrations of Salfordians will thank us for the work we did in bringing the BBC here.
Nachtschlepper wrote
at 12:29:05 on 08 March 2011
No, you chose to continue to fritter away money on trifles such as the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra. This is why people are so frustrated with the Council they continue to blame others & in fairness they do have a point that it is the Commen government to blame, but surely get your priorities right & at least try to look like you are standing up for the people of this city or it will be you playing into your opponents hands.
at 11:54:53 on 08 March 2011
So for the record Paul you are telling me the policy of SAC has been changed to one that the Labour Party could not possibly support. We did cross a line on Wednesday. We chose to place the blame where it truly lies at the feet of the coalition government and we chose to defend our workforce and services by working with the true elected representives of our workers. We could have united in a campaign against this government. Instead you have chosen to target the council. If that is your new policy you have made the Tories very happy
Paul Gerrard wrote
at 08:49:17 on 08 March 2011
Last night I took part in a passionate, focussed and highly productive meeting of Salford against Cuts. It was well-attended, with a number of people attending for the first time in response to our stalls or our letter in the Advertiser. No-one – not a single person – criticised me for what I said in Manchester on Saturday, nor was it raised during or outside the meeting. I am under no illusions that everyone would agree with every dot and comma of my speech. In the run-up to last Wednesday’s meeting there was – as our secretary Steve North pointed out - a range of views in SAC about what our attitude should be to the Labour Council. But the council crossed a line last Wednesday by voting through a £40 million package of cuts and our single purpose is now, as you would expect, to fight and campaign against cuts which will turn this city into a wasteland. We made an excellent start last night. Cllr Merry will be hearing a lot more from us shortly.
Steven North wrote
at 15:47:32 on 07 March 2011
Hi John Unfortunately I couldn't make it to the Demo on Saturday and I haven't had a chance to talk to Paul and others who were there from SAC about this yet, so I'll reserve my comments on what was said until I've got the full picture. It may be a misunderstanding and these can be problematic as I've seen from your comments on another article on this site. Thanks, Steve
John Merry wrote
at 12:03:35 on 07 March 2011
So Steve you would confirm that Paul was not speaking on behalf of Salford Against the Cuts
Reginald Lawson-Tims wrote
at 12:03:27 on 07 March 2011
I'm delighted to hear the police were well behaved!
Steven North wrote
at 10:49:12 on 07 March 2011
As Secretary, I suppose I should try and clarify the SAC position in relation to the Council's budget. We did not call on them to set a needs budget, but nor do we have a mandate to support the Council in setting a cuts budget. There are a wide range of views within SAC and I think that is a credit to us. This issue may be our focus is on building the biggest possible movement to challenge the implementation of attacks on jobs and services. We will be discussing how we move forward with this at our meeting tonight at 7pm at Salford City UNISON Branch Office, 445 Chorley Road, Swinton. Please come along and get involved. Thanks, Steve
Steven North wrote
at 10:48:55 on 07 March 2011
Sorry, can I just congratulate anti-cuts campaigners in Manchester on their demonstration. On behalf of SAC I'd like to wish them the best of luck and solidarity in fighting cuts in their city.
Albert wrote
at 04:21:57 on 07 March 2011
This was a very well attended and peaceful event. Both the Police & the marchers were well behaved, the speakers spoke with great passion and some of the demonstrators showed great creativity with their banners. See all the photos here: http://tinyurl.com/6x49ozn
at 20:20:44 on 06 March 2011
Can you all note Paul Gerrard has no mandate from Salford Against the Cuts to speak in such a fashion . The policy of Salford Against the Cuts is to support the Council in not setting an illegal budget
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