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Office politics

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Tom Bloxham is one of the property industry's more charismatic figures. His casual appearance, chummy delivery and ability to encapsulate complex urban issues into pithy sound-bites made him an unmissable attraction at this year's BCO event.

A selection of Bloxham bons mots from his keynote speech included 'Development is meeting demand - regeneration is creating it'; 'You can't get a pizza delivered - it's quite shocking' (on deprivation in East Manchester);

' The Press is neither good nor bad; it is something to be used'; 'Successful housing design is about good space, high ceilings and big windows'. And he finished with a quote from ancient Athens which patently reflects his own aims in Manchester: 'We will leave this city not less but greater and more beautiful than it was left to us.' Bloxham's clarity compared starkly with the speaker who followed him, who managed to include in his opening paragraph the classic blurspeak phrases 'shared picture thinking', 'it's all about partnership', and 'we must think outside the box'.

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