It’s cold, it’s January, and everything’s a bit depressing. So to cheer ourselves up, why don’t we have a nice chat about municipal government structures?
First up, I talk Stephanie through what is arguably England’s biggest local government shake up in 40 years: plans for “metro mayors” in Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham and selected other cities. We talk about why it is that, just four months before the elections, it’s remarkably unclear exactly which cities are actually going to get the new mayors; why some of the big ones definitely won’t; and to cap it all, we’re probably a bit gratuitously mean about Yorkshire.
After that, to lighten the mood, Stephanie shares some stories of weird local government initiatives from around the world, including “the guy who tried to ban death” and “the foot powder that got itself elected mayor”.
And finally, we talk about Transport for London’s tube bylaws for basically no reason at all.