The scheme was paused after leaders in Greater Manchester explained that there is a “fundamental concern” that certain global and national factors may “impact on the ability” of local businesses and individuals to upgrade their vehicles, and questioned whether the current support package agreed with government of £120 million would be sufficient.
Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) said that “emerging evidence” from businesses and trade highlighted significant challenges related to supply chain issues and inflation, and they also pointed to the money needed for taxis, vans, minibuses, and coaches.
Overall, there were concerns that the introduction of the scheme could create “financial hardship” for commercial vehicle users in the region.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson even branded the plans as “completely unworkable” when questioned on it by local MPs in the House of Commons last month, which is why leaders in the region are now working with the government to design a “substantially different” scheme, which reportedly could come into force as soon as July.
The start date for the scheme was first set as 30 May 2022, but now that the government has agreed to move the deadline back to 2026, this means that the total of 1,194 Clean Air Zone (CAZ) road signs across the region with the wrong date on will need to be amended.
Stickers reading ‘Under Review’ will be placed over all the road signs.
However, while it was revealed that the work to amend the signs will not be covered by the £3 million contract for signage, a spokesperson for Clean Air Greater Manchester confirmed that it will in fact be funded by the government.
The spokesperson told the MEN: “The government has agreed to lift a legal direction requiring the implementation of a charging Clean Air Zone (CAZ) in Greater Manchester and, therefore, charges will no longer apply from May 2022 [as the] 10 local authorities now have until 1 July 2022 to work with government to develop a new plan.
“All costs associated with the new plan, including the essential requirement to update existing signage, will continue to be funded by government.”
The Greater Manchester Clean Air Zone is said to be “designed to protect everyone’s health by bringing harmful nitrogen dioxide air pollution at the roadside within legal limits as soon as possible.”
While private cars, motorbikes, and mopeds won’t be affected, some vehicles that do not meet emissions standards – known as ‘non-compliant vehicles’ – will be charged to drive in the Clean Air Zone, with charges looking to range from £7.50 for taxis and private hire vehicles, and £10 for vans and minibuses, all the way through to £60 for buses, coaches, and HGVs.
Daily charges will also occur for campervans and motorhomes too, depending on the tax class of the vehicle.
Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras will be used enforce any non-payment of daily charges that will come with the Greater Manchester Clean Air Zone.
Rudy’s is opening a new pizzeria and pizza school in the former Dawson’s Music site
A year on from the initial news that Rudy’s would be taking over the old Dawson’s Music site on Portland Street, bosses behind the chain of neighbourhood pizzerias have finally hinted towards the new site’s opening date.
Revealing it is set to open in Manchester city centre this spring, they also shared the news that the new 8,000sqft location will be home, not just to another restaurant, but also to Rudy’s very own pizza school.
Billed as a ‘world-class destination for pizzaiolo talent’, the new pizza academy will take just over half the space – providing a structured training programme to both experienced pizza chefs and novices. It is set to welcome over 100 pizza chefs in this first year.
The restaurant, meanwhile, will span the rest with room for 120 covers. It will be Rudy’s sixth pizza restaurant in Manchester.
The new location at Portland Street will also be the HQ for Rudy’s Bake at Home, back by popular demand.
Serving the perfect and classic Neapolitan pizza since 2015 from its original Rudy’s in Ancoats, the acclaimed pizzeria has since opened 16 sites across the UK, with the new 120-cover pizzeria in Portland Street being its sixth location in Manchester.
Born out of passion for pizza, Rudy’s follows the authentic Neapolitan tradition of pizza making, serving classic recipes such as Marinara, Margherita and Calabrese – all originating from Naples, the birthplace of pizza.
Rudy’s has been praised by many as one of the best pizzerias in the UK, it is renowned for its consistency and quality in Neapolitan pizza making. On a mission to pave the way in pizza making all accordance to a truly authentic Neapolitan technique, Rudy’s is proud to open Rudy’s Pizza Academy at the new Portland Street location.
Jos Goncalves, manager at Rudy’s Portland Street, said: “We are delighted to announce that our next Rudy’s pizzeria will be located on Manchester’s bustling Portland Street.
Manchester has been home to the Rudy’s famiglia since we first opened in Ancoats in 2015, and we can’t wait to open our latest pizzeria, with the addition of our first Pizza Academy in the city this spring”.
Featured image – Rudy’s
Watch as Ed Sheeran debuts new music for the first time ever at ‘intimate’ Manchester gig
Now normally, when an artist chooses to take some brand new material out on tour for the first time, they’ll test the waters with a few intimate shows.
Just recently, we’ve had both Fall Out Boy and Blossoms at Band on the Wall, The 1975 at Gorilla, and Jason Manford in a beer garden.
But for Ed Sheeran, his idea of ‘intimate’ is… the AO Arena. That super cosy 21,000-capacity venue. Ah.
After selling out FOUR nights at the Etihad Stadium last summer, though, the chance to see Ed on stage in an arena again is a novel one, and it sold out the venue in minutes.
The ‘Shape of You’ singer announced this surprise arena tour just weeks before he took to the stage, in support of his upcoming sixth album Subtract.
This mini tour kicked off in Manchester last night – meaning our city got to hear new track ‘Eyes Closed’ live for the first time ever.
You can watch the highlights from Ed Sheeran at the AO Arena in the video below