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Manchester blues

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An excellent annual dinner at the Manchester Society of Architects, with society president Christan Wewer in the chair, describing the magic moment as your car milometer goes from 99,000 to 100,000: 'It is a moment usually known only to architects,' he observed sagely. While Manchester is still outwardly successful, with a rash of tower cranes symbolising activity in the city, not all are confident about the future. One well- known city entrepreneur tells Astragal that Liverpool is starting to look like the next Big Thing; Manchester has 'too many gangs, too much parking enforcement, weak leadership, and a Commonwealth Games that is a disaster waiting to happen'. It was still a good night.

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