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Sleuth: 28/11/2008

‘B of the Bang’ replacement proposal and why men should never take women out to dinner: plus is this the best panoramic view of Manchester?

Published on November 28th 2008.


Sleuth: 28/11/2008

Sleuth is a sideways glance at the city every week. We give £25 for every story/rumour and piece of absurdity you find for us to print. We ask for the money back if any legal action follows.

Bling of the Bang
Sleuth was upset last week by suggestions that the wonderful B of the Bang (click here) might be melted down. This week he perked up. Passing the new shop Links of London, which is about to open in St Ann’s Square, he was pleased to see what he hopes is a remodelling of the east Manchester landmark which sits next to City’s stadium. This will be called Bling of the Bang and sport distinctive diamond-like spines. Apparently city chief executive, Sir Howard Bernstein, who knows a thing or two about diamonds and gold (and likes to wear lots of it), thinks this is a real goer. Fits well with Manchester City’s new found riches too.

Congestion charging murk
Sleuth learns that residents in Stockport received a communication through their letter-boxes from the town's Tories this week devoted to the Congestion Charge vote. "DID YOU KNOW", the leaflet screamed in bold caps, "that all Councillors in Stockport, Conservative, Liberal Democrat, Labour, and Independent, voted to support a 'NO' campaign?" Actually this is wrong: the 14-strong opposition Labour group on Stockport council split on the issue and therefore abstained on the vote. Sleuth is beginning to wonder about the quality of the debate on congestion charging at the moment. It’s like the American elections, going on too long. People are starting to get up to mischief.

Coat hooked
Sleuth went to City Inn for lunch with Paul Simpson of Visit Manchester to chat over this, that and the other. There were two charming Polish ladies waiting on. One of these approached and said, “May I take your coats?” We gave them her, she walked away and then turned, before saying: “They don’t contain anything of value, do they?” Very reassuring. Maybe City Inn needs to look at this aspect of their welcome. Still it reminded Sleuth of that Pink Panther movie where Clouseau enters a hotel, a man approaches and says: “May I take your coat?”, then puts it on and walks out with it.

Dig the graffitiSleuth looked out of the Confidential window the other day. He took these pictures. He thinks that perhaps the Council are being a tad aggressive over their anti-graffiti on roads campaign.

Text twisters
Sleuth was taking a group of visitors around up from the Smoke earlier this week. On a quiet Monday night he’d advised that if they wanted late night life then the Village was the best bet. One guy texted a friend who lived in Manchester who he hadn’t seen for a while: ‘I’m in the Gay Village, I’ll see you later, looking forward to hooking up.’ There was no reply. He texted again later, ‘Come down it’s wild, we’re having a great time.’ Nothing. In the morning he woke to a text from a different person, saying ‘You should be ashamed of yourself, you’re married’. “I’d got the numbers mixed up,” he admitted to Sleuth ruefully, “got a lot of explaining to do.”

City snapped
Sleuth went to the lovely open evening at Islington Mill art studios in Salford just off Oldfield Road. Alan Beswick was there from BBC Radio Manchester looking like he was about to kick off a talk show row. Sleuth thinks he also spotted the Queen of Salford, Felicity Goodey, ex-newsreader and now the prime advocate of the city. Andrew Brooks, the photographer, was present too. He’s got a show starting at Urbis on 4 December with his extraordinary images up for sale, kicking off around £20. Check out the one below of the view of Hilton Tower and Civil Justice Centre. We'll be reviewing his urbis exhibition next week.

Police charm offensive
Sleuth was intrigued by the revelations this week that the late Mike Todd, former Chief Constable of Greater Manchester was linked to 38 women. No wonder you can never find a policeman. Sleuth’s not sure that the rumour Todd greeted his ladies like this is right, though: “Hello, hello....er....hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello, hello.”

Going for dinner with women is perilous
Even more alarming for Sleuth was this line in the MEN about Sir Paul Scott-Lee’s investigation into the Mike Todd case. ‘One source said: “Sir Paul’s team have compiled a list of women with whom the GMP chief had relationships. They range from affairs to going out to dinner with a woman on a regular basis.”’ Gentlemen, be careful, going out to dinner with women is now considered suspect. Please repeat after me: “I will not go out to dinner with those women creatures, ever, it’s dangerous.” Repeat it 38 times.

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8 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AeronNovember 28th 2008.

The 'vultures' - also known as the Fourth Estate - are reporting on a current inquiry of important public interest. Perhaps if some people read the newspapers, they would understand this. As Shakespeare aptly put it: 'Don't shoot the messenger.'

AvoNovember 28th 2008.

I'm sure our very own Gordo has had dinner with more than 38 women this past month!

emma graceNovember 28th 2008.

They will probably be reporting on him for a while yet...there was a programme on 4 a few weeks ago about Princess Diana. The media can be such vultures...

surface2airNovember 28th 2008.

Perhaps Mr Todd got a little to close to the truth like Mr Stalker did.Remember folks Big Brother is watching and i dont mean that crap on channel 4.

PeelowNovember 28th 2008.

Mr Todd was a true professional. When asked to deal with issues he did, He was also proactive and effective. He had an achilles heal but I do not think this interfered with his work. R.I P. Mr Todd.

brian, brian, who the chuff is brian?November 28th 2008.

aah, thats so romantic! wonder if that rugged chap in the hard hat is chris?

ManicBeancounterNovember 28th 2008.

On the Congestion Charge. It may have gone on too long, but the truth has yet to come out. Three brief points1)The proposals assume accelerating economic growth for the region, with a lot of the new jobs concentrated in the City Centre. This was done pre-credit crunch.2)The conjestion charge revenue increases of 5.5% a year to 2041. There is a tax bombshell here.3)The new bus services will only happen if they are commercially viable. The demand will not be there. Why? First there will not be the commuters. Second, the conjestion charge is less effective at causing people to move to public transport than assume. Third, the plans assume 55% of those who do switch to public transport will use the bus. This is an exaggeration.

JimNovember 28th 2008.

Why are people still reporting about Todd? Let him rest in peace and rise above the ****e the evening news put out, don't support it

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