Ladies and gentlemen...Welcome to the 11th annual Salford Star Mary Burns Awards which will be running online throughout the festive season. The judges have been hard at work this year ploughing through hundreds of well deserving nominees – companies, politicians and councils who have made 2017 just a little less bearable for us Salford residents.
If readers could dress formally, sip a glass of warm white wine and politely applaud at the end of the citation it would be much appreciated.
So now...it's time to play the music, it's time to light the lights, it's time to meet the muppets on the Salford Star Mary Burns Award Show!
FEED THE RICH AWARD
The Feed The Rich Award is always the most fiercely contested Mary Burns Award with a mountain of entries. In fact, with so many contenders – ie every single developer in Salford that has avoided planning fees – the judges have decided to hand out two Awards this year.
First to come galloping down the red carpet is Salford's very own Fred Done, no stranger to these awards having won the Heritage Destruction Award last year for the Black Horse pub trashing (see here).
This year, according to the Sunday Times Rich List, Fred, and brother Pete, have seen their wealth grow by £30million, up to £1.33billion, to make them the 97th richest people in the country (see here). Their wealth has risen by £380million since 2015...but that hasn't stopped them betting on a bargain. The public subsidies handed out to Fred Done's company, FICM Ltd, have been absolutely staggering...
First up was the 'gift' from Salford City Council over two years ago, when Fred went for planning permission to shove up two ugly blocks, 16 and 12 storeys high, on the site of the Black Friar pub, complete with 380 unaffordable flats.
Done's company should have been paying £1.28million in Section 106 planning fees and contributions but this was waived due to 'viability' issues ie that his profit wouldn't be high enough. Done should also have been providing 20%, or 76, affordable units in the development but, again, this was avoided (see here).
Later that year, Done went cap in hand to the Greater Manchester Housing Fund and nabbed a £17.3million cheap loan for the Blackfriars scheme, for which he also won a Feed The Rich Award (see here).
However, in March this year, Done went back to the Greater Manchester Housing Fund and got a further cheap loan of £5.2million, underwritten by the council tax payers of Salford and the other Greater Manchester authorities (see here)...
...And then, in August, after public subsidies of £22.5million, it was revealed that the 380 flats were being marketed to rich Hong Kong investors by 'global real estate enterprise', Colliers International, acting for Fred Done's developer company, Salboy (see here).
Colliers, which invites punters to "Secure your investment portfolio" and "take the next step towards a sound property investment", also markets 'premium properties' in London for investors where nothing costs under £1million...
So ladies and gentlemen, dismount from your dreams of affordable housing, clasp your Kemptons and raise your tips for the winner of the 2017 Salford Star Mary Burns Feed The Rich Award....
If Fred would like to make an acceptance speech, please use the comments box below...
Winners of 2017 Salford Star Mary Burns Awards...
Disappearing Salford Award - Villafont - click here
Dick Turpin Award For Services to Bridge Hold Ups – Peel Holdings - click here
Carly Simon Award For Vanity – Councillor Derek Antrobus – click here
Feed The Rich Award (part 2) – Conservative Government and the HCA – click here
Corbynista Council of the Year Award - Salford City Council and Mayor Paul Dennett - click here
Grenfell Tower Urgency Award – Salford City Council – click here
Uncle Joe Stalin Award for Open and Democratic Government – Salford City Council – click here
Shameful and Unacceptable Practices Award – Greater Manchester Police – click here
Self Destruction Award – Salford UKIP – click here
Our Friends In The North Memorial Prize – Salford City Council – click here