Star date: 28th March 2011

A Salford Star Exclusive 


A consultant brought in to help some of Salford's most `deprived' people get jobs at MediaCityUK is being paid £650 per day – and a total of £46,800 for just 12 days work a month on a six month contract.

Salford City Council, which is currently cutting funding to community groups, is making the obscene payment to former Salford URC Director of Community Regeneration, Chris Marsh, via a contract which has not gone out to tender.

Full story here…

Despite cut backs that will hit Salford's community groups really hard, Salford City Council is today agreeing to a six month contract worth £46,800 for a consultant to `engage' people in some of Salford's most `deprived' areas in relation to finding work at MediaCityUK.

The so-called `MediaCity and Salford Life Chances Pilot' is continuing to employ former Salford URC Director of Community Regeneration, Chris Marsh via the MPSS company to "ensure that local people have access to the employment opportunities at MediaCityUK and to improve circumstances in Salford's most deprived areas".

Salford City Council expenditure for January shows that MPSS received two payments totalling £16,155.66 for `consultation' work. Now that contract is being extended by a further six months, with Marsh being paid £650 per day for 12 days work a month, a total of £46,800.

According to a Salford Council report, "The work involved is centred on the strategic development and leadership approaches to the two key areas of work, Bridges to MediaCity and the Salford Life Chances Pilot which will lead to a more cohesive and effective delivery of outcomes by partnerships of agencies involved in the work". (You what? Ed)

Salford Council has waived its normal Contractual Standing Orders, which would have meant that the contract would have gone out to tender, because of "the immediate need to provide dedicated resources, the risk to effective delivery caused by lack of dedicated resources, and the extensive contribution made to the design and delivery of this work by the consultant from MPSS who has the necessary expertise in this area, being the former Director of Community Regeneration".

The former Director of Community Regeneration is Chris Marsh, who was previously employed by the Salford Urban Regeneration Company which is being wound up this week.





Winston Smith wrote
at 09:05:14 on 06 April 2012
Salford Star - your 'you what?' comment at the end of the 3rd paragraph from bottom highlights a serious and genuine issue. It takes a genius to put across an idea in a way that the lay person can understand, but an idiot can make even a simple idea stupidly complicated. The words of these people actually reflect the way they think - this type of language is ingrained, it's the language of endless meetings, tickbox management, 'workshops', newsletters and general shite that achieves nothing (other than generating even more meaningless waffle).
Edmund Graystock wrote
at 22:10:29 on 05 April 2012
It will be interesting to see what exactly Marsh has achieved in return for a good bunce of OUR money . Any statistics available ?
mary wrote
at 16:26:55 on 11 April 2011
In the last 3/4 years there have been a lot of NEW members of staff within the council who don't come from these parts but do come from the Wirrel/Liverpool and there abouts. Just look at some of the top jobs that have had a change of staff,heads of departments. When New prospect housing took over a lot of our local workforce were changed for people with a twing to their accent and I don't mean Scottish, (the Beatles come to mind)
at 12:46:16 on 11 April 2011
Another one from Knowsley Council-isnt that where Barbara Spicer came from? (She who gets 2 lots of wages, 1 from SCC and 1 from GMPA..wonder how her statutory working hours are split between the 2 jobs, amounting to £200K between them...how on earth does she manage to land 2 well paid jobs when the people of Salford cant even find 1?) What difference will Chris Marsh make...12 days a month to get Salford people jobs at media city....why? What the heck are we paying statutory agencies like jobcentre plus for...isnt that their real day job? It certainly undermines their position if he is being paid to achieve what they cant.... By the way....are there any senior civil service positions in SCC held by people who actually live in Salford?
James Adenough! wrote
at 14:54:10 on 08 April 2011
"Is it any coincidence that Marsh worked with the Chief Executive at Knowsley before being imported by her to Salford URC? The awarding of this contact was obscene as it was to secure Marsh (or Marshy as the highly paid Deputy Chief Executive calls him) a job once the URC went. He regales people with the story of how he marched onto Media City building site with Brady clinging to his coat tails to demand jobs for Salford people, and he claims they signed up 500 on the spot! Merry may be duped by Marsh and others with scouse accents at Salford council but the real workers know that it’s a load of tripe and a waste of public money yet again!! Wake up Merry and Lancaster. Lead, don't follow!!
at 22:10:54 on 03 April 2011
Are all URC staff getting jobs with SCC? I see Jonathon Drake has been nicely shoehorned into a top Salix Homes job whilst existing staff have been sidelined...and Elaine Davies another SCC favourite- I bet she will be back up at the Civic.....just jobs for the boys
Rotting in this Dead City wrote
at 15:49:36 on 03 April 2011
No doubt this lot will be fast - tracked into good jobs by their chums after 5th May , leaving the rest of us to rot on the dole .Bastards .
John Merry wrote
at 14:00:26 on 03 April 2011
just because you dont agree with what i say Jim you want to stop me from posting says it all really. Anyway dont worry because i will be too involved in trying to campaign in the whole of the city to post much here this month. After the elections maybe we can both look at where we are
Resident of this Dead City wrote
at 13:03:22 on 03 April 2011
Not gone out to tender .Says it all really .The useless , inept clowns that crawl into council work are all second raters , unemployable in the real world of work - the private sector .Had I agreed a contract without tendering to obtain the best price and value for money I would have been sacked , as all involved in this farce should be .What part did the grossly overpaid 'executives'play in this ? Mass sackings for all involved .It is too easy for this lot to ride the taxpayer- funded gravy - train without accountability to the electorate .No wonder council tax is so excessive in this Dump of a City.
Vince wrote
at 13:02:40 on 03 April 2011
Perhaps the Salford Star could ask the council to comment on why this contract did not go out to Tender ? The reason quoted is mere politician - speak , and unacceptable .Well done Salford Star for once again exposing what really occurs in this hellhole of a City , and how the arrogant Council Wasters squander OUR taxes.
Jim Devine wrote
at 13:02:10 on 03 April 2011
Instead of being smug about jumping on feckin coaches to London to protest about cuts along with Merry and of all people Ed (stab anybody in the back) Milliband why not turn this forum into something really worthwhile and get a coach straight to Merrys house or even betterr Bliars house. I feel his smarmy contributions would soon disappear and unfortunately a few of the big mouth protesters on this site would be busy elsewhere. If London protests really worked they would start shooting you , just like Peters Square.
Eddie wrote
at 18:51:41 on 02 April 2011
What a pathetic bunch of wasters this damned council is .They will all have new jobs in May , as traffic cones on the A6 Crescent abortion .
Ed Ward wrote
at 11:53:00 on 02 April 2011
To pay such an obscene amount of OUR money to some dirtbag in these austere times is criminal .Couldn't the council cretins find a self-important non=job at executive pay instead ?Media City Cleaning Squad Director of Essential Mops and Buckets CO-ordinator , salary £200,000.
Reg Howard wrote
at 00:59:03 on 02 April 2011
I constantly read the moans and groans of the people who post on this and other websites, many of which I agree with, but moaning about things never brought about change, if you don't like what you have, change it !!the opportunity to do that will be presented to you on 5th May, it is called an election, this is your chance to get rid of the councilors you don't like and elect someone who cares about our city,Labour seem to think that they have a divine right to run this city, maybe they could be wrong this time, so, get off your backsides AND VOTE, only then can you claim the right to complain, there are many candidates, just choose the person who you think will do most good for you and yours.
Brian Francis Kirkham wrote
at 10:08:00 on 01 April 2011
Vacant, I know exactly where Mr Merry comes from. He's a career politician. I read somewhere that during the last election he was disappointed not to be chosen for any labour seat. He went for selection, and wasn't chosen apparently. My disappointment with him and his fellows on the council is this, during my lifetime i've seen him and his colleagues systematically destroy every single thing in the neighboorhood...as i said someplace else, schools, libraries, even health centres don't hold value - but land is at a premium. Just look down trafford road, and see where once there was a school - now you have a morrisions, where housing once stood - you have a school, Where do local people opposite 'the quays' get opportunity at mediacity? The majority commute from elsewhere!!!
Eddie wrote
at 22:47:12 on 31 March 2011
A LITTLE BIT OF GOOD NEWS IN THIS JOBLESS , HOPELESS HELLHOLE .Some bloke and some tart that read the news are not coming to Super Salford, so thats two jobs at the BBC.Form an orderly queue , sheeple,but take your mops and buckets just in case .Perhaps Marsh could have a word in the right ear ,but don't hold your breath .After all , we're all in this together...
Pretty Vacant. wrote
at 22:46:53 on 31 March 2011
I enjoy your comments Brian but calling a council leader honourable has kind of turned my stomach. Dont you realise he is just part of an unaccountable elite continuing the dirty work of previous unaccountable elitists. What about his comrade in Norfolk spending four grand of public money on airbrushed photographs or his pal in Manchester guilty of domestic violence or his crony NWDA chum guilty of racism and misuse of public money and who also dished out £4,000 of public money to that honourable journalist Jim Hancock to interview him, I think you should maybe reconsider the honourable part as one day when the truth is irrefutable you might look back and regret it.
Brian F Kirkham wrote
at 09:38:11 on 31 March 2011
Mr merry, I don't question your motives. I'm quite sure they are honorable - but you fail to see what i look at on a daily basis. Yes Good Old Auntie beeb is setting up in Salford, with her chums from ITV and all, but from the start of this project all the way to the time of writing what i've been saying for quite a while keeps on manifesting itself on a daily basis. Auntie's staff in the Grand palace of London say they don't want to come to Salford...till BBC/Mediacity start promising the earth and THEN they want to come. In the surrounding areas Urban vision are flogging off land left right and centre for 'executive' flats, and the vultures are circling the terraced estates looking for owner occupiers to fleece. You and your partners are building yet another supermarket whilst shutting libraries, quite forgetting the public use that facility, and that dividing line between The Hall and the Quays has just got bigger and wider with your assignments of postal code changes and all. Jobs aren't going to locals, most are being shipped in from outside the area and because of negative press (peddled by the idle few in that not so free sheet) it continues. The evidence can be seen each morning...a short walk from my house. Its a them and us mentality, brought on by tons of investment in a small area of salford docks. Tried Insuring your car recently Mr Merry? Your M50 ruse (even though it was in the end instigated by peel via the post office) has rocketed my fathers car insurance! And God help you if you have a health problem! - Tried accessing ordsall clinic? Here's a poser - I Know you are underway with the development of the new academy where the URC once stood, and you're building a Hotel and a Morrisons next to the Hulton Square (LPC) development, but what about the land once occupied by Egerton (St Clements) School ? And now that the new school has been built, are the council or developers actually going to sort out the paving situation between the two schools high fences? Fix the Open Manhole covers? Or provide green space beyond the quayside? (Just a Thought....) I realise times are hard Mr Merry, but seeing as you've turned my neighbourhood into something of a patchwork quilt - if finances were better i would have tried my hand at the teaching profession, but dear old Universities gone Private and JCP have moved closer to Manchester ..it seems you aren't interested in 'real ordsall' anymore, you like the myth generated when the estate was'nt covered by a school and are only interested in the areas of the district you know you can pull a profit. If you wish to deflect this onto an Ordsall councillor feel free - i'd love to hear from them, they're only seen at election time.
Guy Fawkes wrote
at 09:35:44 on 31 March 2011
£650 a day is an obscene amount to pay anyone for a bit of' consultation work' .What , exactly ,justifies wasting such an amount ? THIS 'CONSULTATION WORK' WAS NOT EVEN PUT TO TENDER .So how does anyone know that this expenditure is value for money ? The council have excelled themselves in gross incompetence once again .They must justify this expenditure to the People of Salford , who are the ones paying for for it .
damrosali wrote
at 22:26:36 on 30 March 2011
£650 a day, if this is true, you cant blame the chap who gets it (we would all take it !) i just found out that saford c c has just got rid of 2 bin wagons and 6 of those little pink things that go on the paths to clean up, how does that make sense!!!!!!!!!!!!
Ed Ward wrote
at 15:40:29 on 30 March 2011
More bullshit from the civic centre bullshitters . Anyone with ability to get on in life leaves this Dead City as soon as possible , as many have before . There are no decent jobs here .Media City , BBC ? Bullshit .This dump of a city is a deadhole , a wasteland - and still the council cretins spout crap about a future . There is no future in this no hope city .Salford is a stinking cesspit of hopelessness , despair , horror and corruption .The bullshitters are doing fine though , as WE fund their excesses .
Eddie Banyard wrote
at 01:54:54 on 30 March 2011
Merry should cut through the waffle and bluster , and explain why OUR money has been wasted on this scheme ,without being put to tender .Just what are this lot playing at , squandering OUR money like this ? Without a satisfactory explanation , resignations must follow .But doubtless the arrogance and unaccountability to the extorted Salford taxpayer will just continue .
mary ferrer wrote
at 20:48:25 on 29 March 2011
We have in our schools career officers,they work with the children from year 10,so they would know who was looking for a career in media.So give these people the info regarding the jobs that are coming up.The same could happen within our colleges. How is this person going to get these posts filled. I am sorry there are lots of ways and means to get the message across to the people of Salford, both young and old without spending £46.800. Regarding who gets the jobs, won't that be down to the people at Media city.
John Merry wrote
at 17:04:25 on 29 March 2011
The one thing I agree with is that we should judge Chris Marsh by the number of people from Salford who get jobs but his remit extends right across the city and he will have to work against the problems likely to be caused by the Tory led government. I rather resent the idea in some of the comments that people in Salford are only capable of getting job as cleaners or coffee makers. Do you not look at the huge changes in achievement by our young people who are leaving school and college with more skills and qualifications than we would ever have dreamt of 20 years ago. Let's see what happens but I do believe we cannot turn the clock back and we need to do all in our power to help people back into work. That's why I believe this will be money well spent.
The Truth wrote
at 14:38:14 on 29 March 2011
So he will be going round and asking "Do you want to work in the canteen or as a cleaner?". I hope everybody tells him they want a job like his, £650 a day and 12 days a month.
Davey Foye wrote
at 14:37:35 on 29 March 2011
Never mind cos we're all in this together. The sheeple more than anyone else. How dare these council wasters squander OUR money like this .When is this inept council sacking the grossly overpaid 'executive' garbage-spouters that cost the sheeple so much money .I can't afford a pension , I am too busy paying the illegal council tax extortion to pay for theirs .Bastards , all of them .MASS SACKINGS NOW .
don draper wrote
at 10:00:11 on 29 March 2011
how can you be against cuts when confronted with obscene examples like this. what we must fight for is more cuts and for the cuts to be directed at the self serving gravy trainers like this chris marsh not the essential services that the council is required legally and morally to provide that should be ring fenced. This type of wasteful prolifigacy is what brought us to this point in the first place. And i know how the council can raise extra funds by betting money that you will never see this fellow actually walking the streets of these deprived areas and engaging the kind of kids face to face who would be well placed candidates to get jobs at media city/bbc.More likely he will be devoting his time to receptions meetings and junket trips among the great and the not so good. But i tell you what if I do see him I will give an earful of what I think of him and his madey up job.Furthermore we should all be scrutinising the fruits or lack therof of his overpaid labours in six months time, when we should know how many salfordians get jobs at the BBC from the 500 on offer. Anybody taking odds on 5, 3 anyone 2? 1? lets see.......
Ed Ward wrote
at 09:58:08 on 29 March 2011
These jobs should be advertised locally , or do this arrogant self-serving council assume NO Salford person is capable of doing the job ?
mary ferrer wrote
at 07:40:48 on 29 March 2011
This might sound daft, but why can't they just advertise these jobs in the paper and in their IN SALFORD CRAP that every house in Salford gets. Put it in the JOB CENTRE or am I asking too much. No,its jobs for the boys again. Question do we know what these jobs are.
Salford Star wrote
at 18:49:31 on 28 March 2011
Hi John - check this out for MediaCity postcodes http://tinyurl.com/6kngnhj
john wrote
at 18:44:55 on 28 March 2011
why am i not surprised . the council keep telling us that the media city will bring jobs and wealth to the surounding area but up to now all it seems to be doing is taking money from the surounding area and one more thing completely off topic what is the postcode for the media city .because i live in m6 which is a quarter of a mile away and my car insurance as just gone up 47.8% and thats with 25 years no claims bonus the reason and i qoute you live in a very high crime area do i. i had not noticed . no doubt it will be very cheap for the super dooper bbc complex just one more kick in the teeth for the good folk of salford
Brian F Kirkham wrote
at 18:44:14 on 28 March 2011
£650 pounds a day eh? is that before tax or after it? LOL! another question to ask is, has anybody spotted the big white elephant in the room yet? The majority of Auntie Beeb's London entourage have made it clear, they don't want to move up here (not unless they get massive backhanders to settle in the vicinity!) so that means we're paying, yet again, for a big grand scheme - despite what council and their developer friends might say...I haven't seen anyone from the council selling this to the communities around it. A positive from this is at least the youngsters and trainees from the Academy will get their chance if these posts are not filled. Of course, if Auntie Beeb is willing to retrain an out of work computer technician - send me a mail!
D.Savage wrote
at 17:47:24 on 28 March 2011
Does Group Leader Merry have any light-hearted banter about this outrage ? Sackings for all involved.
Eddie wrote
at 17:46:20 on 28 March 2011
Thanks to Salford Star for exposing this .This outrage would never have been reported in the Clowncil's Death in Salford jolly rag .What cretin authorised this deal must be sacked .No doubt the council garbage-spouting , self-serving ,self-important windbags will be all coy about this .Sack them all .
Paul B wrote
at 16:05:09 on 28 March 2011
I'd have done it for £325 a day!
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