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Mayor Monitor for Europe
Praise. Criticise. Write.

City Mayors invites its readers to praise or criticise how mayors from Europe lead their cities. Please comment on their achievements while in office or describe their failures.

Below we publish a cross-sections of recent and pertinent comments. If you wish to comment on any mayor, then please post your views using our online form.

Mayors from Europe on this page:

| Assisi (Italy) | Berlin (Germany) | London (UK) | Marseille (France) | Middlesbrough | Munich (Germany) | Nicosia (Cyprus) | Paris (France) |

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COMMENTS
EUROPE
Claudio Ricci, Mayor of Assisi, Italy
From Marco C (Assisi):
He has vastly improved the traffic situation by replacing traffic lights with round-abouts. But the city lacks entertainment events.
Score: 8/10. Posted November 2011
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Klaus Wowereit, Mayor of Berlin, Germany
From Craig Carr (Outside Germany): My mother Ruth Kaplaneck was born November 8th,1924 and grew up at Grossbeerenstrasse 39 in the Kreutzberg park area. She attended Uhlan Oberlyceum Schule on Kolonenstrasse, performed in the 1936 Olympics and survived living through the darkest days of mankind and Berlin's history and rescued from being pubicly hanged in March of 1945. Our elderly relatives in Berlin say that Though Klaus Wowereit may not be perfect, he is one of the nicest and most personable visionaries of an exceptional city who strives to restore Berlin's former architecural past, improve employment numbers by creating jobs in construction and restoration of Berlin's prewar past as a tourist magnet and re purposing and utilziing existing vacant buildings like the Tempelhof Airport and honoring and preserving the past in positive way to enhance Belrin's future economically with greater prosperity and keen eye to Berlin's famed history of theatre and symphony, museums, hotels, Parks and fine arts.
But what impresses me most, is what my German neighbor told me about an interview he read about Mr Wowereit as he seeks to locate Berlin's dwindling elderly city survivors and build an eye witnesses bridge to history, and help build a national archive those people like my mother can share with the Youth of Today their experiences and joys and sorrows of the Youth of Yesteryear. For 66 years, so much has been swept under the carpet of silence and indifference..
That he would even TRY to do what no Mayor in Berlin has ever done before since WW2...to honor those who survived in Berlin during the worst days of mankind and preserve and share their memories and life experiences. That makes him a "20" in my book on a scale of 1 to 10.
So few know what our parents and grandparents endured..that I am most appreciative of what I have heard about his new effort. What a great man he is to do this for ALL German citiizens.
This is the birthday present I have worked one year for my mother's upcoming 87th birthday. I sorted through family fotos and memorabilia and captioned each foto with the oral histories of our relatives of what they saw and lived through. They ALL deserve our respect and to be honored.
This is the Berlin of 70 years ago, before 80% of it was destroyed..
It has been viewed by 37,748 people around the world as a work in progress this last year. maybe,you will find it of interest?. I hope I can find out where I might be able to submit it to be added to Mayor Wowereit's Berlin Historical Archive of Survivors. Mit freundlichen Gruessen, CRAIG.
Posted November 2011.
From Franz F (Sydney): Every visit in the last 20 years to Berlin was a delight. I have considered to retire one day in my parents beautiful and united city but wonder now if it would be a good move. On Deutsche Welle TV we see cars burning in the streets. Any progress in the liberal city to restrict these negative practices and be accepting and respectful of neighbor's property and life?
Posted September 2011
From Kent (San Francisco): I read in the newspapers here in San Francisco today that Mayor Wowereit recently said,"It's alarming that even today some people argue there was good reasons to build the Wall. No!"
If Mr Mayor had been sixty years old in August of 1961, and he were a Russian, he could think of at least 21,000,000 reasons for building that WALL.
I doubt there were many Frenchmen over 60 in 1961 who were unhappy to see the wall go up either..
My father came home from the WAR with a crushed back.. He never held it against anyone; but it certainly altered the lives of those around him.. I was in and out of hospitals taking care of him until he died...
Yes, I think the WALL was justified in 1961.. as was tearing it down in 1989. But to say emphatically, that it wasn't justified, is to be blind to history..
Mr. Mayor, buy yourself a history book printed in some language other than German.
Posted September 2011
From the Hon Michael Bourne (UK): I am the son of General Lord Bourne Commandant British Sector during the Luft Brucke. We lived on the banks of the Havel at Villa Lemm. I am ofted asked what happened to it when it was no longer lived in by the British - perhaps it was handed back to the Plaische family to whom it belonged in the 1930's? My family are ever grateful for our days in Berlin and the friends my parents made, Reuter, Schreiber, Suhr and von Weizsäcker who wrote me a charming letter when my late father died. With warm regards, Michael Bourne.
Posted August 2011
From Gidi Halpern (Outside Germany): Wowereit has turned Berlin into the No.1 liberal city in Europe. A city with great personal freedom. Berlin today is Europe's culture & pleasure capital esp. for the youth
(Posted August 2011)
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Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, UK
From Alex (London): Boris Johnson has failede to set out any kind of long term vision for London, instead focussing his Mayorality entirely on media presentation and spin. He has done nothing about London's long term housing crisis, the city's unbalanced and grossly unequal economic structure and has let the previous Mayor's leadership on cities and climate change melt away.
Score 1/10. Posted March 2012
From Kenneth O'Connor (London): I don't understand how Boris Johnson can continue to defend and protect banks, hedge fund and other financial institutions that have destroyed tens of thousands of jobs in London since 2008.
Score 2/10. Posted November 2011
From Ruth & Toni (London): Mayor Johnson's response to Occupy London has shown that when he says he cares about Londoners he means his City of London chums.
Score 3/10. Posted November 2011
From Alice K (London W14): By opposing high-speed rail to Birmingham and beyond, Mayor Johnson panders to the wishes of Home County Conservatives.
Posted August 2011
From Terry (London): The bikes for hire scheme is the best thing Boris has done since he replaced Ken Livingston. Can't think of anything else the mayor has done.
Posted June 2011
From Cecil C C (London): The London mayor had the courage to say that the city needs immigrants and that long term illegal ones should be granted an amnesty. Cameron, his party leader, has acted cowardly.
Posted June 2011
From Paul, Jonathon, Leslie (London): The London mayor shouldn't have wasted millions on a new bus. The money could have been spent on repairing the built infrastructure of the capital.
Posted June 2011
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Jean-Claude Gaudin, Mayor of Marseille, France
From Marius (France): Mayor Gaudin has been successful to obtain for Marseille the Cultural Capital of Europe status for 2013 but he lacks vision and decisiveness.
Posted September 2011
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Ray Mallon, Mayor of Middlesbrough, UK
From Jack H (Middlesbrough): The mayor has never done anything socially, economically positive for the area. Invests in schemes bound to fail. He has cut public physicality such as athletics stadiums for schools, libraries, youth care and children's clubs. He only gets voted in due to his political alliances.
Score 1/10. Posted November 2011.
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Christian Ude, Mayor of Munich, Germany
From Peter Ingram (Outside Germany): Dear Mayor Ude: I love your city but you have no social housing for those who want to move to Munich and get on the ladder and do well because it's a great city and you can do very well but those who have business ideas and plans and designs and want to move there with little money have no chance, which is a shame as its a great city.
Posted August 2011
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Eleni Mavrou, Mayor of Nicosia, Cyprus
From K.M. (Nicosia): Mayor Mavrou has been listening what the people need, improving the city's infrastructure, caring for those more in need, trying to overcome problems created by the long-standing division of the city.
Posted September 2011
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Bertrand Delanoë, Mayor of Paris, France
From Anon (Abu Dhabi): I want to thank the Mayor of Paris for naming a street after Mohammed Bouazizi, who set himself on fire on 17 December 2010 in protest against the Tunisian government. His act became a catalyst for the Tunisian revolution.
Posted August 2011
From Thomas D (USA): I recently visited Paris and learned about how Paris embodies liberty, justice, and equality! I was mugged by two men in May and when the police arrived they blamed my "lifestyle for inviting this" and said "I deserved what I got" and arrested me for alleged drunkiness. They took me to the Bastille Police Station and demanded I take breathalizer. I refused since I wasn't driving and asked for lawyer. The eldest officer (the ringer leader), looked me with contempt and disgust and said I have no rights.
Next I'm in the emergency room of a hospital. They carted me off into a room where I was jabbed with needles, with no explanation or consent to this procedure. The nurse told me not to be so rude. I told nurse that I mugged and the police are treating like criminal. His response was "was the mugger black?". I then met with the MD, she said that I presented fine and did not appear drunk, but feared for my safety and said the police will kill me if I don't obey their every command.
They then took to the station and threw me in a cell. At 9:30 am I asked the officer when I when I would be let out. He immediately released me and seemed confused why I there. I explained my story and he looked very confused and said the report mentions nothing of mugging and that I need return to file a report. The morning crew seemed to not know anything about me.
I have a friend in Paris who is a Parisian officer and who said this was in retaliation of Dominique Strauss-Kahn scandal and being a gay American only added to the fun that they would have with me and this happens all the time.
Posted August 2011
From
Michael D W (Outside France): Mayor Delanoe's achievements are many. The Vellib, which has reduced the frightening traffic in Paris, is one. Another is his buying up buildings in which virtually anyone can live in, not just the rich, who are forcing most of the poor out of Paris. I think there was a revolution fought about this once. Plus, as a gay man, it gives me hope that he will set a good example for all of the young gay men of France, and that they can strive for whatever goal they wish. Posted April 2011
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