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Friday 10 June

A busy start to the week began with a Cabinet briefing for myself and new Deputy Leader Councillor Lisa Evans from the Council's Managing Director Julie Danks. The virtual briefing included updates on the Council Plan and the ongoing Boundary Review. The Local Government Boundary Commission for England is carrying out the electoral review of the Borough which could see changes made to the number of wards and councillors in Stockton-on-Tees.

This was followed by the regular early in the week catch up between myself, the Deputy Leader and the Managing Director to discuss any ongoing issues and the week ahead.

In the afternoon I met with Superintendent Marc Anderson, of Cleveland Police, for an update on neighbourhood policing across the Borough.

The day ended with a Cabinet and Corporate Management Team (CMT) briefing from Margaret Waggott, the Council's Assistant Director for Administration, Democratic and Electoral Services. This included updates on the welcome return of the Stockton International Riverside Festival (SIRF) this summer and on our town centres.

Tuesday began with me chairing an online meeting of the Education, Employment and Skills Advisory Group (EESAG) of the Tees Valley Combined Authority (TVCA). We worked through a busy agenda, with discussions on a number of issues including the Local Skills Improvement Plan and Strategic Development Fund Bid to help meet local training and skills needs, and help get people into work.

In the evening I attended a governing body meeting at Billingham South Community Primary School, and it was good to hear about ongoing developments and planned activities at the school.

Wednesday began with my monthly business and regeneration update from Garry Cummings, the Council's Director of Finance, Development and Business Services.

In the afternoon I attended a meeting of the Planning Committee

Yesterday I had fewer meetings throughout the day so it was a welcome chance to catch up on office work.

The working week will draw to a close today with a meeting of the Corporate Parenting Board in the Jim Cooke Conference Suite. When a child comes into care, we as the Council become their 'corporate parent' which means we have a collective responsibility for providing the best possible care and safeguarding for the young people who are looked after by us.

This weekend I am looking forward to spending time with my family and also catching the hit musical We Will Rock You at the Globe.