England & Wales

Tale of Two Cities: Manchester and Birmingham, cuts and redundancies


After the storm over the LGA’s statement yesterday that 140,000 jobs will be lost in local government, I noticed today a contrast between two of the council’s that LGiU works closely with: Manchester and Birmingham.  Stephen Hughes, the Chief Executive of Birmingham City Council, has issued a letter to all staff in which he writes about the council’s plans following the Spending Review:

The proposals in their entirety will require a significant reduction in the workforce by a combination of natural wastage, early retirement and voluntary redundancy, transfer to other organisation structures and, as a last resort, by compulsory redundancy.

Mr Hughes stresses his pride in the staff and writes:

I cannot pretend that this is anything but difficult and painful

Meanwhile up the M6 in Manchester, Cllr Richard Leese, has said publicly that there will be no compulsory redundancies.   This is from the Leader’s Blog (a good initiative in itself by the way, prominently featured on the council’s homepage):

There are no cuts in services and no compulsory redundancies, but there is a recognition that money is going to be even tighter over the next few years and there is a real challenge for us in how we manage that

I haven’t seen the council’s M Proposals, which are essentially about much more flexibility, but the Inside the M60 blog reports that the workforce have backed them.