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Political events continue to move at a bewildering pace, writes Labour's Borough Council Leader, David Ellesmere. At the start of last week, we faced two months of bruising campaigning for the leadership of the Conservative Party. By Wednesday we had a new Prime Minister.

Theresa May started her new job with a lot of goodwill. The country needs some stability.

Her speech was a breath of fresh air from a Tory Prime Minister. After six years of the rich getting richer and ordinary people getting poorer under David Cameron, here she was promising the exact opposite.

Now you may have been cynical about whether she meant it – given that she was a loyal minister for all of those last six years – or whether she will actually do anything to put it into practice, but it’s not a speech David Cameron or George Osborne would ever have made.

In more normal times she could have expected to enjoy a honeymoon period of several weeks or months.

Instead it lasted a couple of hours, right up until the point where she appointed Boris Johnson as Foreign Secretary.

It’s hard to imagine why Theresa May did this.

On a purely party political level it just reminds us that they are the same old Tories.

But the damage it has done and will do to Britain’s standing in the world is incalculable. The map of countries Boris Johnson has insulted is like the British Empire – the sun never sets on it.

He is either detested or treated as laughing stock around the world at a time when we need all the friends we can get.

What was she thinking?

Boris Johnson as Foreign Secretary - What was Theresa May thinking?

Political events continue to move at a bewildering pace, writes Labour's Borough Council Leader, David Ellesmere. At the start of last week, we faced two months of bruising campaigning for...

I’m really pleased that the Cornhill Project is moving ahead and that the latest designs are now out for public consultation, writes Ipswich Borough Council Leader, David Ellesmere.

I’ll be the first to admit that this project didn’t have the best of starts.

Sir Stuart Rose’s less than complimentary comments about Ipswich put a lot of people’s backs up.

The original images of the winning design for the Cornhill confused many people and led to a lot of misconceptions: there was never any intention to whitewash all the buildings around the Cornhill. The new surface was never planned to be “decking”. The market will be able to go back on the Cornhill if that’s what we all want. Skateboarders will not be welcome.

The new images give a much better impression of what is planned: much improved access to the Town Hall while still maintaining step-free access across the Cornhill. A water feature which will provide a real draw for the town centre. The ability to divide the Cornhill into separate areas for sitting out and public entertainments.

This will provide a huge boost to Ipswich.

Nobody is pretending that this is going to solve all our problems, but it will be a big help. Along with other improvements, like the new multi-storey Crown Car Park, it shows retailers that we have the confidence to invest in our town centre. If we’re not prepared to invest in Ipswich, why should they?

We are already trying to attract extra funding to expand the area of repaving out from the Cornhill to more of the town centre.

The final details of the scheme have not been decided yet. For instance, I know there are mixed views about the design of the tower or even whether there should be a tower at all.

If you didn’t get a chance to visit the exhibition in the Town Hall on Thursday or Saturday, please have your say by filling in the survey online at: www.ipswichvision.org.uk/cornhill

A new look Cornhill can provide massive boost to our town

I’m really pleased that the Cornhill Project is moving ahead and that the latest designs are now out for public consultation, writes Ipswich Borough Council Leader, David Ellesmere. I’ll be...

Amid all the doom and gloom, thank goodness for Pigs Gone Wild, which has brought a smile to everyone’s face, writes Ipswich Borough Council Leader, David Ellesmere.

It has turned out even better than I imagined it would.

The designs are amazing with my current favourites Pigs Can Fly and the Trotters Pig.

The names are incredibly inventive and very funny. From a very long list my top puns are currently Albert Einswine, Ed Sheer-ham and Porkman Road.

And it has been a joy to see so many people, especially families with young children, walking round town, map in hand, to tick off as many as pigs as they can.

I will try to get the full set over summer but I’m really looking forward to September when all the pigs will be gathered together in the Town Hall and Corn Exchange prior to being auctioned off.

Top marks to Norman Lloyd, the project manager, and his team for putting this on.

St Elizabeth Hospice deserves to raise a lot of money for this. You can donate on the Pigs Gone Wild website or can make a donation of £3 by texting PIGS to 70300.

Pigs Gone Wild is bringing a smile to Ipswich faces

Amid all the doom and gloom, thank goodness for Pigs Gone Wild, which has brought a smile to everyone’s face, writes Ipswich Borough Council Leader, David Ellesmere. It has turned...

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