Council Leader Ian Greenwood slams Tory opposite Anne Hawksworth’s opportunism and ‘incompetence’

It goes from bad to worse for poor old Anne Hawksworth. A few weeks ago she must have been looking forward to the possibility of being Leader of Bradford Council, with Kris Hopkin’s becoming MP for Keighley leaving open the spot for Leader of Bradford Conservative’s who at the time controlled the Council.

Alas (and by alas I mean thank the Lord) it was not to be, as the Lib Dems abstained in the leadership vote, allowing Labour to lead the Council for the first time in ten years, with Ian Greenwood.

This meant Anne had to settle for being plain old Leader, which is an honour in itself (as I’m sure she agrees in all honesty) but not quite a jump straight to the top spot that she surely must have anticipated.

Anyway, in an attempt to promote a populist cause and have a dig at Bradford Labour she’s come out and said the Council should consider erecting a giant TV screen in Centenary Square to show the World Cup, as the current one is now allowed due to the proximity of the building works.

Ian Greenwood’s repsonse is a classic put-down, pointing out that it’s due to her ‘incompetence’ that we’re in this situation in the first place, reminding the T&A that she was the portfolio holder with this responsibility merely weeks ago. Hopefully, as Ian says, in the latter stages we could show something. I’d imagine that the extra money it would bring in for the surrounding area would outweigh the cost of erecting a temporary giant screen, especially if England manage to get past the quarter finals!

In other news (as they say) I was gutted to hear the Love Apple has closed in Bradford City Centre. Supposedly it had increased its prices to try deter ‘riff-raff’ from coming in, but surely they would have spotted a corresponding decline in takings and switched back accordingly? I can’t believe a bar would rather close than let ‘riff-raff’ come in to drink. From memory it was £2.50 a pint, which while more than the Weatherspoons over the road was hardly above average for many places these days.

The Love Apple wasn’t my favourite bar or pub in Bradford, but it was on my roster to visit whenever I was out in the city centre, and I often took friends there to show them that Bradford had good quality, independent bars and cafe’s. Their tarka daal was delicious.

So I’m gutted it’s closed –  I often said to my partner that if it was based in Leeds it would be packed out every day but because it was in Bradford it was never more than half full. Another sorry loss for Bradford and let’s hope with Labour leading the Council we can make a positive difference to the city centre over the next year.

UPDATE: Another snipe-fest between Greenwood and Hawksworth, truly no love lost here. Hawksworth has tried to claim the Labour leadership are letting things drift because one meeting to cancelled. She said important decisions needed taking on things like the Future Jobs Fund (which has just been scrapped by her government). Greenwood replies rather tartly pointing out perhaps she could persuade her own government not to scrap it and besides, she was until weeks ago part of the Tory controlled Council that let £1 million of Future Jobs Fund funding go unspent that could have been used to put people into jobs in Bradford.

Roll on 2010 and 2011! It’s going to be interesting!

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