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Manchester mourns the passing of a legend

Business leaders from Manchester and beyond have been paying tribute to Sir Howard Bernstein.

Business leaders from Manchester and beyond have been paying tribute this week to Sir Howard Bernstein, following the passing of the former chief executive of Manchester City Council last weekend.

Sir Howard was the key architect in the city’s renaissance, developing the blueprint for regeneration of the city centre following the Manchester bomb, leading a successful bid to host the 2002 Commonwealth Games, and being instrumental in delivering the first major devolution deal in England which became to be known as ‘Devo Manc’.

A great friend to Downtown in Business, Howard contributed to dozens of DIB events across the country, and he encouraged Frank McKenna to establish the Downtown brand in Manchester over a decade ago.  

Tributes have poured in from across the country for a man who is recognised as one of, if not the, most influential local government leaders in modern times, with warm words expressed by a whole range of people, including Gary Neville, Alastair Campbell, George Osborne, and many more besides.

At a DIB breakfast event hosted in Manchester earlier this week, council leader Bev Craig expressed her gratitude to the contribution that Sir Howard had made to not only the city, but Greater Manchester as a region, and acknowledging the crucial contribution he had made to his hometown.

To read Frank McKenna’s reflections on Howard, please click here and you can listen to a podcast we recorded with Howard during the pandemic below.

From the Downtown team and our entire network, many condolences to the Bernstein family. Howard was a truly great man, who will be greatly missed by all those who knew him.

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