This week, it's cold, it's January, and everything's a bit depressing. So to cheer ourselves up, why don't we have a nice chat about municipal government structures?
First up, Jonn talks Stephanie through what is arguably England's biggest local government shake up in 40 years: plans for "metro mayors" in Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham and selected other cities. We talk about why it is that, just four months before the elections, it's surprisingly unclear how many of these new mayors there are actually going to be; why some of the other big cities aren't getting mayors at all; and we're probably a bit gratuitously mean about yorkshire.
After that, to lighten the mood, Stephanie shares some stories of weird local government initiatives from around the world, including "the guy who tried to ban death" and "the foot powder that got itself elected mayor".
And finally we talk about Transport for London's tube bylaws for basically no reason at all.
Skylines is the podcast from CityMetric, the New Statesman cities site. It's presented by Jonn Elledge and Stephanie Boland.