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Building workers marched from Albert Square to Platt Fields on Wednesday to demand better pay and working conditions. They have a seven-point list of demands, including a swift settlement of overdue pay claims, government prioritisation of the building trade in order to ensure an adequate supply of building materials, and canteen and first aid facilities to be installed on all building sites.

At present a craftsman in the Manchester district earns 2s 6d an hour. Working a 44 and a half hour week in summer, this adds up to over five pounds a week. But because of bank and public holidays, which are not paid, and the effect of bad weather (approxmately 10 weeks lost per year), a building worker often comes out on average with less than 4 a week.

The post-war economic boom is at an end, according to observers. This is indicated by a fall in Manchester house prices. This time last year, a semi-detached property in a reasonable area of Mancheste, priced at 750 in 1939, could have been sold for 1500, but it is unlikely that it would achieve this price today. Recently a detached home in Didsbury was sold at auction for 2500. The owners had condidently expected to sell it for 3000.

Manchester has the cheapest house prices in the whole country. A three bedroomed semi costing 950 here would cost 1500 in London or 2500 in one of the better seaside towns.

Wakes week crowds have been pouring out of the cotton towns of Lancashire this weekend on their way to destinations such as Morecambe and Blackpool. But many travellers are going further afield, including Eire and the continent, some of them making the most of their days off by taking the plane.

Towns enjoying Wakes Week holidays include Tyldesley, Wigan and Leigh.

On Monday, a new bi-weekly service by Aer Lingus will commence linking Eire, Manchester and the Continent. The first flight will go to Amsterdam, and the aircraft will be a Dakota.

The third test started today at Old Trafford. Approximately 10,000 people have watched the cricket teams of England and South Africa.

The weather this weekend has been warm, though rather overcast today. Weather forecasters at Ringway predict bright periods but advise travellers to take a mac, as there will also be showers.

Text by Aidan O'Rourke
Based on reports in the Manchester Evening News

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