Manchester City Council

Manchester City Council
Third of council elected three years out of four
Coat of arms
Houses Unicameral
Term limits
Founded 1 April 1974
Leader of the Opposition
Cllr June Hitchen, Labour
Since May 2018
Seats 96 councillors
Political groups
  Labour: 94 seats
  Liberal Democrat: 2 seats
Joint committees
Greater Manchester Combined Authority
Greater Manchester Police and Crime Panel
First past the post
Last election
2018 (all councillors due to boundary changes)
2016 (one third of councillors)
2015 (one third of councillors)
2014 (one third of councillors)
Next election
2019 (one third of councillors)
2020 (one third of councillors)
2022 (one third of councillors)
Concilio et Labore
Meeting place
Manchester Town Hall, Albert Square, Manchester

Manchester City Council is the local government authority for Manchester, a city and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England. It is composed of 96 councillors, three for each of the 32 electoral wards of Manchester. The council is controlled by the Labour Party and led by Sir Richard Leese. Joanne Roney is the chief executive. Many of the council's staff are based at Manchester Town Hall.


Manchester was incorporated in 1838 under the Municipal Corporations Act 1835 as the Corporation of Manchester or Manchester Corporation. It achieved city status in 1853, only the second such grant since the Reformation. The area included in the city has been increased many times, in 1885 (Bradford, Harpurhey and Rusholme), 1890 (Blackley, Crumpsall, part of Droylsden, Kirkmanshulme, Moston, Newton Heath, Openshaw, and West Gorton), 1903 (Heaton), 1904 (Burnage, Chorlton cum Hardy, Didsbury, and Moss Side), 1909 (Gorton, and Levenshulme), 1931 (Wythenshawe: Baguley, Northenden, and Northen Etchells), and Ringway. A new Town Hall was opened in 1877 (by Alderman Abel Heywood) and the Mayor of Manchester was granted the title of Lord Mayor in 1893.[1]

Under the Local Government Act 1972 the council was reconstituted as a metropolitan borough council in 1974, and since then it has been controlled by the Labour Party. In 1980, Manchester was the first council to declare itself a nuclear-free zone. In 1984 it formed an equal opportunities unit as part of its opposition to Section 28.[2]

Political make up

Elections are usually by thirds (a third of the seats elected, three years in every four), although the 2018 & 2004 elections saw all seats contested due to substantial boundary changes. Labour has controlled a majority of seats in every election since the council was reconstituted. Between 2014 and 2016 Labour occupied every seat with no opposition.[3] In the local elections held on 5 May 2016, former Manchester Withington MP, John Leech, was elected with 53% of the vote signifying the first gain for any party other than Labour for the first time in six years in Manchester and providing an opposition for the first time in two years.[4] On 7 March 2017, it was reported that City Centre Councillor Kevin Peel had been suspended from the Manchester Labour group after reports of bullying. He sat as an independent, still taking the Labour Group whip until he rejoined Labour.[5]

Year Labour Lib Dems Green Conservative Independent
2018 94 2 0 0 0
2017 94 1 0 0 1
2016 95 1 0 0 0
2015 96 0 0 0 0
2014 96 0 0 0 0
2012 86 9 0 0 1
2011 75 20 0 0 1
2010 62 31 0 1 2
2008 61 34 0 1 0
2007 61 33 1 1 0
2006 62 33 1 0 0
2004 57 38 1 0 0
2003 71 27 1 0 0
2002 76 22 0 0 1
2000 78 21 0 0 0
1999 82 17 0 0 0
1998 84 15 0 0 0
1996 84 15 0 0 0
1995 83 14 0 2 0
1994 79 15 0 4 1
1992 80 12 0 2 2
1991 85 9 0 5 0
1990 78 9 0 12 0
1987 77 9 0 13 0

Coat of arms

A coat of arms was granted to the Manchester Corporation in 1842, passing on to Manchester City Council when the borough of Manchester was granted the title of city in 1853.[6]

  • The Shield: red (Gules) with three gold (Or) bands drawn diagonally across to the right hand side.
  • The Chief (the white (Argent) top segment): shows a ship at sea in full sail. This is a reference to the city's trading base.
  • The Crest: On a multicoloured wreath stands a terrestrial globe, signifying Manchester's world trade, and covered by a swarm of flying bees. The bee was adopted in the 19th century as a symbol of industrial Manchester being the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution.
  • The Supporters: On the left, a heraldic antelope with a chain attached to a gold (Or) collar, representing engineering industries, and hanging at the shoulder, the red rose of Lancashire, reflecting Manchester's historic position in Lancashire. On the right, a golden lion stands guardant (facing us), crowned with a red (Gules) castle (a reference to the Roman fort at Castlefield from which the city originated). The lion also wears the Red Rose of Lancashire.
  • Motto: Concilio et Labore, loosely translated "By wisdom and effort" (or "By counsel and hard work").

In 1954 the Manchester Corporation successfully took the Manchester Palace of Varieties to court for improperly using the Corporation's arms in its internal decoration and its company seal. The case of Manchester Corporation v Manchester Palace of Varieties Ltd;[7] was the first sitting of the Court of Chivalry for two hundred years, and it has not sat since.[8]

In April 2013, Manchester City Council threatened to take legal action against The Manchester Gazette, for its use of the City's coat of arms on their website. The News Outlet claimed it already gained permission and continued to use it for a further 8 months in spite of the warnings. Withington MP John Leech said the town hall's latest move a ‘massive over-reaction and waste of money’, adding: “Have the council’s legal department got nothing better to do?”[9][10]


On 14 April 2010 the BBC reported that council leader Richard Leese had stood down temporarily from his post as leader of Manchester City Council after having been arrested on suspicion of the common assault of his 16-year-old stepdaughter. He was released after accepting a police caution and admitting striking his stepdaughter across the face. [11][12]

On 7 March 2017, it was reported that City Centre Councillor Kevin Peel had been suspended from the Manchester Labour group after reports of bullying. He sat as an independent, still taking the Labour Group whip until he rejoined Labour. [13] He did not re-stand in the following set of elections. [14]

On 9 April 2018, it was reported that the Labour Party had received formal complaints about Chris Paul, Labour councillor for Withington since 2011. There were social media comments describing women as “cows”, “slobs” and “bitches”, and inciting violence against women. [15] Greater Manchester Police, The Labour Party and Manchester City Council all launched investigations and Paul eventually apologised. Paul was re-elected in Withington ward with a reduced majority beating Lib Dem candidate April Preston.[16][17] Manchester Council bosses banned elected opposition members from asking questions about Paul and on 18th July 2018, more than three months after initial reports surfaced, The Sun newspaper reported that Paul was still under investigation. It also revealed that Manchester Withington MP Jeff Smith posted a selfie photograph with the councillor on Twitter which was met negatively by some local people.[18]


Year Leader Party
1982–1984 Bill Egerton Labour Party
1984–1996 Graham Stringer Labour Party
1996-present Sir Richard Leese Labour Party

Leaders of the Opposition

Year Leader Party
1973-1990 Harold Tucker Conservative Party
1990-1997 James Ashley Liberal Democrats
1997–2011 Simon Ashley Liberal Democrats
2011–2014 Simon Wheale Liberal Democrats
2014–2018 Vacant N/A
2018-Present John Leech Liberal Democrats

City treasurer

  • Carol Culley (since 2015)[19]

Town Clerk

  • Sir Philip Burrington Dingle (1906–1978), Town Clerk of Manchester: 1944–66.[20]

Chief executive


Blackley and BroughtonManchester GortonWythenshawe and Sale East
Manchester CentralManchester Withington


Each ward is represented by three councillors.[21]

Parliamentary constituencyWardCouncillorPartyTerm of office
Blackley and Broughton
Charlestown Basil Curley Labour 2018–19
Hannah Priest Labour 2018–20
Veronica Kirkpatrick Labour 2018–22
Cheetham Julie Connolly Labour 2018–19
Shaukat Ali Labour 2018–20
Naeem-Ul Hassam Labour 2018–22
Crumpsall Fiaz Riasat Labour 2018–19
Nasrin Ali Labour 2018–20
Richard Leese Labour 2018–22
Harpurhey Pat Karney Labour 2018–19
Joanne Green Labour 2018–20
Sandra Collins Labour 2018–22
Higher Blackley Paula Sadler Labour 2018–19
Shelley Lanchubury Labour 2018–20
John Farrell Labour 2018–22
Manchester Central
Ancoats and Beswick Mohammed Majid Dar Labour 2018–19
Emma Taylor Labour 2018–20
Rosa Battle Labour 2018–22
Ardwick Mavis Smitheman Labour 2018–19
Bernard Priest Labour 2018–20
Tina Hewitson Labour 2018–22
Clayton and Openshaw Sean McHale Labour 2018–19
Donna Ludford Labour 2018–20
Andy Harland Labour 2018–22
Deansgate William Jeavons Labour 2018–19
Marcus Johns Labour 2018–20
Joan Davies Labour 2018–22
Hulme Annette Wright Labour 2018–19
Nigel Murphy Labour 2018–20
Lee-Ann Igbon Labour 2018–22
Miles Platting and Newton Heath John Flanagan Labour 2018–19
June Hitchin Labour 2018–20
Carmine Grimshaw Labour 2018–22
Moss Side Mahadi Hussein Sharif Mahamed Labour 2018–19
Emily Rowles Labour 2018–20
Sameen Ali Labour 2018–22
Moston Yasmine Dar Labour 2018–19
Carl Ollerhead Labour 2018–20
Paula Appleby Labour 2018–22
Piccadilly Sam Wheeler Labour 2018–19
Jon-Connor Lyons Labour 2018–20
Adele Douglas Labour 2018–22
Manchester Gorton
Fallowfield Ali R. Ilyas Labour 2018–19
Zahra Alijah Labour 2018–20
Grace Fletcher-Hackwood Labour 2018–22
Gorton and Abbey Hey Afia Kamal Labour 2018–19
Julie Reid Labour 2018–20
Louis Hughes Labour 2018–22
Levenshulme Basat Sheikh Labour 2018–19
Bernard Stone Labour 2018–20
Dzidra Noor Labour 2018–22
Longsight Suzanne Richards Labour 2018–19
Luthfur Rahman Labour 2018–20
Abid Chohan Labour 2018–22
Rusholme Ahmed Ali Labour 2018–19
Jill Lovecy Labour 2018–20
Rabnawaz Akbar Labour 2018–22
Whalley Range Angeliki Stogia Labour 2018–19
Mary Watson Labour 2018–20
Aftab Razaq Labour 2018–22
Manchester Withington
Burnage Azra Ali Labour 2018–19
Bev Craig Labour 2018–20
Ben Clay Labour 2018–22
Chorlton Matt Strong Labour 2018–19
Eve Holt Labour 2018–20
John Hacking Labour 2018–22
Chorlton Park Dave Rawson Labour 2018–19
Mandie Shilton-Goodwin Labour 2018–20
Joanna Midgley Labour 2018–22
Didsbury East James Wilson Labour 2018–19
Kelly Simcock Labour 2018–20
Andrew Simcock Labour 2018–22
Didsbury West David Ellison Labour 2018–19
Richard Kilpatrick Lib Dem 2018–20
John Leech Lib Dem 2018–22
Old Moat Garry Bridges Labour 2018–19
Gavin White Labour 2018–20
Suzannah Reeves Labour 2018–22
Withington Chris Paul Labour Co-op 2018–19
Chris Wills Labour Co-op 2018–20
Rebecca Moore Labour 2018–22
Wythenshawe and Sale East
Baguley Luke Raikes Labour 2018–19
Tracy Rawlins Labour 2018–20
Paul Andrews Labour 2018–22
Brooklands Sue Murphy Labour 2018–19
Glynn Evans Labour 2018–20
Sue Cooley Labour 2018–22
Northenden Sarah Russell Labour 2018–19
Sam Lynch Labour 2018–20
Mary Monaghan Labour 2018–22
Sharston Hugh Barrett Labour 2018–19
Maddy Monaghan Labour 2018–20
Tommy Judge Labour 2018–22
Woodhouse Park Edward Newman Labour 2018–19
Brian O'Neil Labour 2018–20
Sarah Judge Labour 2018–22


  1. Frangopulo, Nicholas J. (1969). Rich inheritance: a guide to the history of Manchester. Wakefield: S.R. Publishers. pp. 59–72. ISBN 9780854095506. Reprinted by Manchester Education Committee (1962).
  2. Citations:
  3. Staff writer (8 May 2015). "Election 2015: Labour gains total control of Manchester City Council". BBC News. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
  4. Fitzgerald, Todd (6 May 2016). "Manchester local election results 2016: John Leech ends Labour's total grip on the town hall". Manchester Evening News. Archived from the original on 17 August 2016. Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  5. Staff writer (7 March 2017). "Councillor kevin Peel suspended from Manchester Council's Labour group". Manchester Gazette. Archived from the original on 8 March 2017. Retrieved 7 January 2018.
  6. Frangopulo, Nicholas J. (1969). Rich inheritance: a guide to the history of Manchester. Wakefield: S.R. Publishers. p. 59. ISBN 9780854095506. p. II (note by W. H. Shercliff) Reprinted by Manchester Education Committee (1962).
  7. Manchester Corporation v Manchester Palace of Varieties Ltd, P 133; [1955] 1 All ER 387
  8. Squibb, G. D. (1997) [1959]. The High Court of Chivalry: a study of the civil law in England. Oxford New York: Clarendon Press Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780198251408.
  9. Williams, Jennifer (30 April 2013). "Manchester council threat to sue website over coat of arms". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 30 November 2013.
  10. News Desk (17 October 2013). "New website header". Manchester Gazette. Archived from the original on 20 October 2013. Retrieved 30 November 2013.
  11. "Manchester City Council leader steps down after assault". BBC News. 14 April 2010.
  12. Carter, Helen (14 April 2010). "Manchester council leader Richard Leese cautioned over stepdaughter assault". The Guardian. London.
  13. "Councillor Kevin Peel suspended from Manchester Labour Group - WriteYou - the Social Newspaper". Retrieved 2018-07-19.
  14. "We need to talk about Kevin (Peel). | Shamballa By Sara". (in Swedish). Retrieved 2018-07-19.
  15. Williams, Jennifer (2018-04-09). "Labour councillor seeking re-election apologises for sweary and abusive posts on Twitter". men. Retrieved 2018-07-16.
  16. Williams, Jennifer (9 April 2018). "Labour councillor seeking re-election apologises for sweary and abusive posts on Twitter". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 9 April 2018.
  17. News Desk (9 April 2018). "Calls for disgraced Labour councillor to stand down amid flurry of online abuse". Manchester Gazette. Retrieved 9 April 2018.
  18. "Labour politician refuses to quit despite calling women 'b***h', 'cow' and 'c***' in misogynistic hate campaign online". The Sun. 2018-07-18. Retrieved 2018-07-19.
  19. Editor (21 June 2012). "Richard Paver on cuts, borrowing and derivatives". Room 151 – Local Government Treasury, Technical & Strategic Finance. Longview Productions Ltd. Retrieved 12 August 2015.
  20. "Dingle, Sir Philip (Burrington)". Oxford Biography Index.
  21. "All councillors". Manchester City Council. Government of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 6 January 2018.

Further reading

  • McKechnie, H. M. (ed.) (1915) Manchester in Nineteen Hundred and Fifteen. Manchester U. P.; "Undertakings of the City Council; Social Amelioration in Manchester; Elementary Education in Manchester; Secondary Schools in Manchester; The Evening School System of Manchester", by E. D. Simon, et al.
  • Manchester City Council. "Concilio et Labore" Series. No. 1-11. (Each pamphlet describes part of the council's work, e.g. no. 4: the City Treasurer.
  • Redford, Arthur (1939) The History of City Government in Manchester; Vol. 2 & 3: Borough and City; The Last Half Century.
  • Simon, Ernest D. (1926) A City Council from Within. London: Longmans, Green
  • Simon, Shena D. (1938) A Century of City Government: Manchester 1838–1938. London: G. Allen & Unwin
  • Tomlinson, H. E. (1943) "The Heraldry of Manchester" in: Bulletin of the John Rylands Library; vol. XXVIII, pp. 207–27
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.