ALAN Calvert is an enthusiast for the Northern Powerhouse idea.

Well I for one don't know how it is supposed to work and ask Alan to explain it. The government has been cutting public expenditure so steeply that local authorities have been forced to cut down on essential services or privatise them or abolish them altogether.

If the Manchester based Northern Powerhouse is to be established, where then is the money to establish it to come from? It must involve increases in the very public expenditure which the government is so determined to cut. And if the Powerhouse can keep the proceeds of the business rate, then the income of the Treasury is reduced.

It looks like a smoke and mirrors job to me, on a par with Cameron's conference speech, in which he promised a war on poverty, while at the same time his government is implementing measures that will push another 200,000 people into poverty.

Malcolm Pittock

St James Avenue