Media Watch – May 21

By on 21/05/2015 in Media Watch

Top Birmingham City Council stories

Solihull leader backs plans for a combined authority (Birmingham Mail and Birmingham Post): Solihull Borough Council leader Bob Sleigh indicates the council would sign up to a combined authority. His pledge comes a day after Coventry City Council backed plans for a new body. Also The Post’s coverage also includes a piece stating business leaders have told council leaders to elect a ‘metro mayor’ to help secure devolved powers for the West Midlands region.

Big Break Snooker Club licence revoked (widespread local and national coverage):  Licensing sub-committee yesterday revoked the licence of the Digbeth snooker club, after West Midlands Police submitted evidence of child sexual exploitation and use of Class A drugs, as well as public safety breaches at the venue.  Cllr Barbara Dring quoted.

City dispute with roads contractor stepped up (Birmingham Post): Report on the city council’s dispute with Amey, which has now gone to an independent adjudicator. Cllr Tahir Ali quoted.

Council ‘delay’ prompts row over £150k subsidy (Birmingham Post): Report that the decision to award £155,000 to the Westside Business Improvement District has been delayed following a challenge from the economy scrutiny committee.  Leader Sir Albert Bore quoted.

Union slams plan to sack heads of failing schools (Birmingham Post): Teaching union the NASUWT  has criticised Government plans to convert ‘coasting schools’ into academies, which could result in 60 headteachers across the region losing their jobs.  It also refers to their concerns over Colin Diamond’s appointment as interim executive director for education, former head of DfE’s academies educational advisers division, who they fear may push for more schools to become academies.

Ray of delight with three leading ladies (Birmingham Mail):  Coverage of Cllr Ray Hassall taking up the post of Lord Mayor, referring to the fact he will have three different consorts to assist with his mayoral engagements.

Growing for Gold (Birmingham Post & Birmingham Mail): Coverage of the council’s gold medal win for its floral depiction of Birmingham Cathedral’s bell tower at the Chelsea Flower Show.

Christmas market leads tourism surge (Birmingham Post):  Office of National Statistics figures show 944,000 people visited Birmingham in 2014, with the Frankfurt Christmas Market welcoming 5.5m visitors last year.  Leader Sir Albert Bore quoted.

Labour triumphs at city council elections (Bromsgrove Standard): Coverage of the election results in Longbridge and Northfield for the city council and parliamentary elections.

Regional Headlines

House prices in the West Midlands rose to their highest ever level in March. Office of National Statistics found the average house price is £202,000 – up 7.3 per cent from February.

A Wolverhampton hotel owner has disappeared after arriving in India on a business trip. Ranjit Power was reported missing on 14 May after he failed to return home.

National Headlines

Net migration to the UK rose to 318,000 in 2014, the highest figure since 2005, according to Government figures published today.

Government plans to enable police to seize wages of illegal workers as proceeds of crime are to be set out in next week’s Queens Speech.

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