|Families gather to cheer City in a booze free Albert Square
On Saturday the chief constable came to this beautiful part of Greater Manchester - to present two of our lads with a Chief Scouts Gold Award. It was the first time I'd had the chance to talk to Peter Fahy, but was struck by what a decent honest man he seems. His speech was really inspiring and applauded the incredible work that voluntary groups like scouts do for local community cohesion. He also talked about the cuts and the climate we live in - how hard it is going to be to provide public services. He was then setting out to go on city centre patrol where his officers would be breaking up fights at 5am. This 24 hour drinking experiment has failed miserably, Britain can't handle it's drink. It's a problem for the police and sooner or later they're going to have to oppose licences. What a dismal waste of police time.
So, hooray for the dibble.
I tried to buy a bottle of champagne as a present for someone who has helped me out today. I couldn't, because at the request of Greater Manchester Police, the shops in the city centre weren't selling alcohol on the day that Manchester City were parading their Premier League trophy. Any thought that this was excessive prompts a thought back to the rampant Rangers fans drinking all day and urinating over our city 4 years ago. On walking to Piccadilly station and seeing the streams of families and kids in their City kits and flags I thought what a good idea it was to cut off the supply and change the tempo of the parade.
Another big whoo hoo for the cops!
Finally, a bit of a leap here, but let's not forget that the awful story of the grooming of young girls in Rochdale owes a huge thanks to the GMP. The main priority in this case has been to secure a prosecution. Amidst appalling tension the police have managed to get witnesses to testify and with idiots stoking up hatred and playing the race card that can't have been easy. I hope more prosecutions follow. There may be a deep seated racial motive behind the exploitation by Pakistani men of young "easy meat" white girls, but it is wholly wrong to say it's a facet of the Muslim community of Manchester.
Thanks and cheers for the Five -O.
It takes courage and dedication to take these three stances and to see the bigger picture. What a complex and difficult job policing is, and how fortunate we are to have the force we have.