Manchester City Council

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Manchester City Council
Third of council elected three years out of four
Coat of arms or logo
Coat of arms
Houses Unicameral
Term limits
Founded 1 April 1974
Edward Newman, Labour
Since 2017
Seats 96 councillors
Manchester City Council composition
Political groups
     Labour (94)
Other parties
     Liberal Democrat (1)
     Vacancy (1)
Joint committees
Greater Manchester Combined Authority
Greater Manchester Police and Crime Panel
First past the post
Last election
2014 (one third of councillors)
2015 (one third of councillors)
2016 (one third of councillors)
Next election
2018 (all councillors due to boundary changes)
2019 (one third of councillors)
2020 (one third of councillors)
Concilio et Labore
Meeting place
Manchester town hall.jpg
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 2004 elections, due to substantial boundary changes (which involved the total number of councillors reduced), saw all seats contested. 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
2017 95 1 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 75 22 0 0 1
2000 78 21 0 0 0
1999 82 17 0 0 0
1998 84 15 0 0 0

Coat of arms

Gules, three bendlets enhanced Or; a chief argent, thereon on waves of the sea a ship under sail proper. On a wreath of colours, a terrestrial globe semée of bees volant, all proper. On the dexter side a heraldic antelope argent, attired, and chain reflexed over the back Or, and on the sinister side a lion guardant Or, murally crowned Gules; each charged on the shoulder with a rose of the last. Motto: "Concilio et Labore"

A coat of arms was granted to the Borough of Manchester in 1842 and 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, in which county Manchester once was. 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]


City treasurer

  • Carol Culley (since 2015)[11]

Town Clerk

  • Sir Philip Burrington Dingle (1906-1978), Town Clerk of Manchester: 1944–66.[12]

Chief Executive


Wards within Manchester City Council
Blackley and Broughton Manchester Gorton Wythenshawe and Sale East
  1. Higher Blackley
  2. Crumpsall
  3. Charlestown
  4. Cheetham
  5. Harpurhey
    • This constituency also contains
    Broughton and Kersal in
    neighbouring Salford City Council.
Manchester Central Manchester Withington


Each ward is represented by three councillors.[13]

Parliamentary constituency Ward Councillor Party Term of office
Blackley and Broughton
Charlestown Veronica Kirkpatrick Labour 2014–18
Basil Curley Labour 2015–18
Hannah Priest Labour 2016–18
Cheetham Naeem Hassam Labour 2014–18
Julie Connolly Labour 2015–18
Shaukat Ali Labour 2016–18
Crumpsall Jon-Leigh Pritchard Labour 2014–18
Beth Marshall Labour 2015–18
Richard Leese Labour 2016–18
Harpurhey Sandra Collins Labour 2014–18
Joanne Green Labour 2015–18
Pat Karney Labour 2016–18
Higher Blackley Paula Sadler Labour 2014–18
John Farrell Labour 2015–18
Shelley Lanchubury Labour 2016–18
Manchester Central
Ancoats and Beswick Donna Ludford Labour 2014–18
Mick Loughman Labour 2015–18
Ollie Manco Labour 2016–18
Ardwick Mavis Smitheman Labour 2014–18
Bernard Priest Labour 2015–18
Tina Hewitson Labour 2016–18
Clayton and Openshaw John Longden Labour 2014–18
Rosa Battle Labour 2015–18
Emma Taylor Labour 2016–18
Deansgate Beth Knowles Labour 2014–18
Kevin Peel Labour 2015–18
Joan Davies Labour 2016–18
Hulme Nigel Murphy Labour 2014–18
Lee-Ann Igbon Labour 2015–18
Amina Lone Labour 2016–18
Miles Platting and Newton Heath John Flanagan Labour 2014–18
June Hitchin Labour 2015–18
Carmine Grimshaw Labour 2016–18
Moss Side Emily Rowles Labour 2014–18
Sameen Ali Labour 2015–18
Mahadi Hussein Sharif Mahamed Labour 2016–18
Moston Yasmine Dar Labour 2014–18
Paula Appleby Labour 2015–18
Carl Ollerhead Labour 2016–18
Piccadilly Beth Knowles Labour 2014–18
Kevin Peel Labour 2015–18
Joan Davies Labour 2016–18
Manchester Gorton
Fallowfield Ali R. Ilyas Labour 2014–18
Grace Fletcher-Hackwood Labour 2015–18
Zahra Alijah Labour 2016–18
Gorton and Abbey Hey Nilofar Siddiqi (Gorton North) Labour 2014–18
John Hughes (Gorton North) Labour 2015–18
Afia Kamal (Gorton North) Labour 2016–18
Julie Reid (Gorton South) Labour 2014–18
Peter Cookson (Gorton South) Labour 2015–18
Bernard Stone (Gorton South) Labour 2016–18
Levenshulme Dzidra Noor Labour 2014–18
Basat Sheikh Labour 2015–18
Nasrin Ali Labour 2016–18
Longsight Suzanne Richards Labour 2014–18
Abid Chohan Labour 2015–18
Luthfur Rahman Labour 2016–18
Rusholme Rabnawaz Akbar Labour 2014–18
Jill Lovecy Labour 2015–18
Ahmed Ali Labour 2016–18
Whalley Range Mary Watson Labour 2014–18
Aftab Razaq Labour 2015–18
Angeliki Stogia Labour 2016–18
Manchester Withington
Burnage Azra Ali Labour 2014–18
Carl Austin Labour 2015–18
Bev Craig Labour 2016–18
Chorlton John Hacking Labour 2014–18
Matt Strong Labour 2015–18
Seat vacant N/A 2016–18
Chorlton Park Mandie Shilton-Goodwin Labour 2014–18
Dave Rawson Labour 2015–18
Joanna Midgley Labour 2016–18
Didsbury East James Wilson Labour 2014–18
Andrew Simcock Labour 2015–18
Kelly Simcock Labour 2016–18
Didsbury West Josie Teubler Labour 2014–18
David Ellison Labour 2015–18
John Leech Lib Dem 2016–18
Old Moat Suzannah Reeves Labour 2014–18
Gary Bridges Labour 2015–18
Andrew Fender Labour 2016–18
Withington Rebecca Moore Labour 2014–18
Chris Paul Labour 2015–18
Chris Wills Labour 2016–18
Wythenshawe and Sale East
Baguley Tracy Rawlins Labour 2014–18
Paul Andrews Labour 2015–18
Luke Rakes Labour 2016–18
Brooklands Sue Murphy Labour 2014–18
Sue Cooley Labour 2015–18
Glynn Evans Labour 2016–18
Northenden Sarah Russell Labour 2014–18
Chris Webb Labour 2015–18
Mary Monaghan Labour 2016–18
Sharston Madeleine Monaghan Labour 2014–18
Hugh Barrett Labour 2015–18
Tommy Judge Labour 2016–18
Woodhouse Park Edward Newman Labour 2014–18
Sarah Judge Labour 2015–18
Brian O'Neil Labour 2016–18


  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:
    • Staff writer (13 November 2008). "Supporting lesbian and gay staff in Manchester". Improvement and Development Agency. Archived from the original on 18 August 2011. 
    • Staff writer (2008). "LGBT History". Manchester City Council. Archived from the original on 11 June 2008. 
  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. ^ 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. 
  12. ^ "Dingle, Sir Philip (Burrington)". Oxford Biography Index . 
  13. ^ "All councillors". Manchester City Council. 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

External links

  • Manchester City Council
  • Labour Party in Manchester
  • Liberal Democrat Party in Manchester
  • Green Party in Manchester
  • Conservative Party in Manchester
  • Open Data on Manchester City Council from OpenlyLocal
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