There are few people who can say they have changed the course of Manchester’s history, but that is undoubtedly what Sir Richard Leese has done. Over the past 25 years as city council leader, Leese has overseen the city’s recovery from the economic decline it suffered for decades before the 1990s.
Under his leadership, the population has grown by nearly 22%, the city’s gross value per head nearly doubled and the city’s housing market is thriving. A recent report from Urbanbubble revealed that only 427 apartments were available in October in the central part of the city, the lowest number on record. Rents for studio, two- and three-bedroom apartments were also at record highs.
Deputy editor, Julia Hatmaker, sat down with Leese to discuss the IRA bomb, devolution and the Northern Powerhouse.
“Manchester is a far better place to live now than it was 25 years ago,” Leese told Place North West during a one-on-one interview earlier this month.
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