what I've been doing (hint: contains rage)

Well, y'all, I've been very busy, and only some of it writing-related, though all of it reading-related. I'm heavily involved in a campaign to save my local library and swimming-pool, in Levenshulme, Manchester, from being shut down because of city council cuts. It's a very depressing situation, particularly since Manchester is a Labour-led Council that's systematically implementing Tory-led cuts. They're proposing to build a new leisure-centre-slash-library for 2015, but with no site or planning permission yet acquired, and the consultation period (don't get me started on that farce) still ongoing, not to mention the projected future budget cuts we're all predicting in the next few years, it all seems wildly optimistic. Even if it gets built, we'll be without these facilities for at least two years, and that's unacceptable. To give context, in 2011, the Council promised to keep Levenshulme Baths open until a new facility was up and running, and this January (2013), we discovered that the Baths' closure has in fact been in the works for at least twelve months despite those reassurances. Likewise, they shut down the local community centre, promised to develop the site, and then sold it for a pound (!) and the site now lies derelict. So, we don't believe a word they say. I could rant for a long time about this, and if you're connected to me on FB, you'll probably be weary of it already. The campaign site is here if you're interested. I've already been interviewed about it by Sky News, BBC North West Tonight, BBC Radio Manchester, Key 103 FM, and the M.E.N.. We occupied the library last weekend, were threatened with aggravated trespass (of course nothing came of that), and held a large demo on the streets the following day, which was the headline item on ITV news for two days. We've got loads of public support and positive press, but we've got a long way to go if we're to make the Council change their proposals.

So, that's kind of what's been eating up my life the past few weeks.

In other news, though, here's a really ace review of Enough! Hurray! Thank you, Jodie Daber!


Rachel Fenton said...

Deadly review of Enough. Congratulations!

Keep fighting for the library, the baths, and whatever the govt takes from the North next. You'll find the rage comes easy, it's the what to do with it as the floor disappears from under your feet that'll get to you, that and the apathy of those all around. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Go you! Good luck with being heard, it can feel like a long road but sometimes speaking out can make a brilliant difference.