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16 February 2024

This week started with an exciting engagement at Person Park Museum, where work has begun on the extension of the museum. The new facility includes a cafĂ© and new interactive exhibit space,  allowing nationally significant touring exhibitions to come to the Borough.

In the afternoon I met with Mike Greene, Chief Executive of the Council, and senior officers from Catalyst - the Borough Voluntary Development Agency. We have a thriving voluntary, community and social enterprise sector, and we support Catalyst to make sure the organisations in the VCSE sector are doing everything they can for residents.

Following that there was a special meeting of Cabinet to go through the Medium Term Financial Plan with our finance officers.

On Tuesday morning I met with senior officers from our Regeneration Team to discuss plans to improve Durham Lane Business Park, which I hope to talk about soon.

Mid-week I attended a meeting of the Tees Valley Local Skills Improvement Plan (LSIP) Advisory Group. Myself and other leaders in the Tees Valley at this session discussed in particular communication skills and confidence of workers in the region, and how they can be improved.

Yesterday I had a pre-agenda meeting for the Health and Wellbeing Board which happens later this month. In the afternoon there was a Cabinet meeting in which we discussed school admissions and performance, waste and recycling, and our Environmental Sustainability and Carbon Reduction Strategy.

Today is a quieter day in the office where I will catch up on important paperwork and emails. In the evening I am attending the Mayor's Ball at Wynyard Hall. It's always a fantastic event which raises thousands of pounds for the Mayor's charities, and I'm thoroughly looking forward to it.

This weekend I'm looking forward to spending some time with my family and relaxing. Middlesbrough suffered a mid-week defeat at Preston, further damaging our plan for promotion. At the weekend we play a strong Leicester City team who sit 12 points clear at the top of the table. They're on great form at the moment, so it's going to be a difficult match for us.

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