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24 February 2023

I enjoyed a long weekend this week, taking annual leave on Monday to spend some quality time with my family.

Tuesday was a quieter workday which allowed me to catch up on important paperwork.

Wednesday was a busy day. In the morning, I had a regular catch-ups with one of our Council directors. I then joined the Tees Valley Leaders' Meeting, where leaders of each of the Local Authorities in the Tees Valley come together to give updates on what's happening in the region.

I also attended the Health and Wellbeing Board in the afternoon, which I chair. I was briefed on a number of important partnerships and strategies that support the Borough's health and wellbeing strategy. Then in the evening, there was a Special Council meeting held which focused on discussion of the Medium Term Financial Plan (MTFP).

On Thursday I attended Cabinet, where a busy agenda included discussion about the Annual Report of the Independent Safety Advisory Group (ISAG) and the appointment of a new school governor for one of our primary schools. We also had an update from Bright Minds Big Futures, a youth-led movement working together with the Council to make the Borough a great place to grow up.

On Friday, I joined a leaving presentation for the Council's retiring Managing Director, Julie Danks. It was a great send-off and I wish her the very best for her retirement after more than 30 years in local government.

This weekend I am looking forward to spending time with my family and seeing if Middlesbrough can maintain their fantastic promotion push when they travel to West Brom. Boro's resurgence under manager Michael Carrick has been outstanding and automatic promotion feels like a real possibility now.