A Labour MP from Oldham has criticised the ‘Northern Powerhouse’ name after thousands of northerners are still suffering power outages.
It’s now been a week since Storm Arwen hit the UK and left thousands of homes in the north of England and widespread parts of Scotland without any electricity during one of the coldest months of the year, and this is what prompted Jim McMahon – Labour MP for Oldham West & Royton, and Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs – to take to Twitter to address the situation.
The apparent lack of swift action taken by the government resolve the ongoing issues following the storm has drawn criticism online, particularly in relation to the ‘North / South divide’.
Jim McMahon was a prominent voice in the critiquing, as he took to social media yesterday to point out the irony in the ‘Northern Powerhouse’ name, when thousands of residents across several northern regions are still suffering power outages.
“Northern Powerhouse? Thousands still haven’t got power,” he said in his now-viral tweet.
“It’s now nearly a full week since Storm Arwen hit leaving many vulnerable and isolated waiting in desperate conditions.
“The government have not treated this as the emergency it is.”
While The Northern Powerhouse may not directly relate to the matter at hand, it was the fitting, yet contradictory, name of the government’s plan that cleverly-aided Mr McMahon’s argument.
Mr McMahon’s tweet has received both support and criticism online.
One Twitter user responded: “I don’t live up north, I have no connection with the north and I know absolutely nobody up north but I know if this situation was happening across Hampshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire a national emergency would have been called.
“I don’t know much but I know that.”
On the contrary, another urged Mr McMahon to: “Do something constructive by calling for the nationalisation of our utilities.”
In the government’s own words, the Northern Powerhouse is the “vision for a super-connected, globally-competitive northern economy with a flourishing private sector, a highly-skilled population, and world-renowned civic and business leadership”, and is a proposal based on the benefits of agglomeration and aims to reposition the British economy away from London and the South East.
The “proposal to boost economic growth in the North of England” was launched by the 2010–15 coalition government, and then in 2015-2016 by the Conservative government.
The “Core Cities” are Manchester, Hull, Liverpool, Leeds, Sheffield, and Newcastle.
Storm Arwen arrived last Friday.
The storm – which prompted the Met Office to issue what they described as a “rare red weather warning” – brought with it gale force winds and heavy rain, which eventually turned into snow blizzards that left people stranded in their homes and, in some rural areas of the country, snowed-in completely.
In England, a major incident was declared in County Durham in the North East, with residents and some households moved into temporary accommodation as a result.
And in Scotland, it was also confirmed yesterday that about 120 military personnel have been drafted in to help those still suffering power outages, with their focus being on conducting welfare in the communities still badly affected.
More snow is currently forecast for across the UK next week, according to the Met Office.
Family of murdered Salah Adam Eldin, 21, pay tribute to ‘beautiful son and true hero’
The family of Salah Adam Eldin, a 21-year-old stabbed to death in Old Trafford last week, have paid a heartbreaking tribute to a ‘genuine and loving soul’.
Salah sadly died on Wednesday 31 May after he was found with serious injuries on Kings Road.
A murder investigation has been launched, and 19-year-old Demari Adrian Raymond Rose has been charged with murder and possession of a bladed article.
Salah’s family have described him as ‘the backbone of the family’ and described his respectful, kind and caring nature.
They wrote that support has poured in from across the globe, saying that ‘he was so much to so many people’.
In a tribute issued through GMP, his family said: “Salah was the backbone of the family and carried the family through anything and everything. He was our precious, beautiful son and a true hero.
“He was a supportive brother and precious son, a most genuine and loving soul with a big heart. He always found space in his heart to forgive all.
“He was always respectful and had kind words to say for all, everyone who met him wanted to be friends with him and was respected by all people of all ages.
“We are immensely proud of him. The continuous tributes from his friends, as far and wide as Africa, North America, The Middle East, Europe and from every corner of the world as well as here at home in England, his friends coming with heavy hearts and tears of deep sadness.
“Yes, our heart is filled with grief and pain, the reality that we will no longer hear his voice on the end of the phone. We grieve and wait for the day that we will one day all be reunited as a family together again and it will be forever.
“As a family we are able to support one another with the help of the wonderful friends and family that we have in the community and beyond. The support has been immeasurable, with everyone suffering the same pain and loss of Salah. He was so much to so many people. His short time in this world, he has his legacy of being a kind and caring young man and so loved. The amount of people who have reached out to support us, it is overwhelming and yet wonderful at the same time.
“As a mother, I have no words to describe the depth of my pain, grief and sorrow that I am going through, and I wish no mother must experience the layers of sadness and grief that I and Salah’s siblings and family are going through.
“Our lives have changed forever and we thank Greater Manchester Police for doing all they can to get justice and who have been very supportive, and we thank endless stream of friends and the community from the bottom of our hearts for their continuous love and support that they give us.”
Salah’s family have asked for continued privacy while they grieve for their loss.
Featured image: GMP
Coronation Street legend Julie Goodyear diagnosed with dementia
Coronation Street legend Julie Goodyear, who famously played the iconic character Bet Lynch for over 25 years, has sadly been diagnosed with dementia.
Issuing a statement via ITV, her husband Scott Brand confirmed that they had been given the “heartbreaking diagnosis” this week.
Goodyear, 81, played the legendary Rovers Return pub landlord for over two decades across two different spells on the show, starting in 1966 before leaving the show for good in 1995.
Brand told the outlet on Wednesday: “Unfortunately, Julie has been suffering forgetfulness for some time and we have been seeking medical advice and assistance, but we now know that there is no hope of a reversal in the situation – and that her condition will get progressively, and perhaps speedily, worse.”
He went on to say that he and Goodyear “have taken the decision to publicly announce the diagnosis as Julie still loves visiting friends and eating out”, noting that she inevitably gets recognised “and fans love to meet her – and she them – but she can get confused particularly if she is tired” and adding they “hope people will understand.”
The Manc soap star and household name is from Heywood in Rochdale and retired from acting in 2003 after making her final special appearance on the Coronation Street spin-off, After Hours.