What we do

By telling stories that are neglected in the mainstream, investigating and challenging local power structures and exploring important issues, from the everyday to the earth-shattering, we aim to promote social, environmental and economic justice in our city and beyond.

Our Principles

There is an alternative.

Media is big business. Both locally and nationally, the sector is dominated by a handful of huge, billionaire-owned corporations driven by profit and the need to secure advertising revenue. As such, the mainstream media serves elite interests and filters out meaningful critique of corporate power or government.

We’re offering an alternative. By creating an independent media source working in the interest of the local community, we’re aiming to amplify the voices, issues and ideas that are marginalised, under-represented or ignored by the mainstream.

Co-operative values & principles.

The Meteor became a co-operative in July 2019, because the Co-ops values of self-help, self-responsibility, democracy, equality, equity, solidarity and the seven co-operative principles provide a tried and tested ethical framework for our media business to operate within.

Our work should be open, inclusive and diverse.

We are committed to being accurate, fair and honest in everything we publish; transparent about our political stances, finances and accountable to the local community. We’re aiming to create a platform where a diverse range of voices can be heard, particularly those that are shut out of the mainstream media.

We recognise that this is something that can always be improved and we will continue to work to make the project as inclusive and participatory as possible. We welcome comments, suggestions and offers of collaboration from anyone who shares our passion for independent media for Manchester.

Our work should encourage social change.

We will report the news,and also present opportunities for a better future. By providing research and information that can be utilised by campaigners, as well as being actively involved in our local areas, we aim to foster engagement, debate and action in the community.

The Meteor Team

Meet The Meteor Production Team! These are the members of our co-operative who do the majority of the editorial, events and organising work for The Meteor.

Conrad Bower

Co-founder and Co-editor

Conrad came to journalism following his move to Manchester after a period working in scientific research in Scotland.

Since then he has concentrated on reporting on issues around social justice, the environment and human rights.

A staunch advocate for the scientific method and rational debate for understanding the world – he believes only greater public understanding and engagement in the problems that face us all can produce progressive societies, from the local to the global, that can combat the multiple crises we face.

Alice Toomer-McAlpine

Co-founder and Co-editor

Alice is a community worker and journalist from Manchester who works across a range of roles including youth work, community organising, video production and creative documentation of non-profit projects.

Alice is interested in how the stories we create and share shape the world we live in, and how communities can take ownership of their stories and build trust with local independent media to build collective power.

Alex King

Head of Web & Tech

Alex has a background in History and moved to Manchester in 2018 having freelanced in Bristol.

He has particular interests in the climate crisis, industrial relations, public services, local government and political economy.

He advocates for media democracy and a Green New Deal as the best tools society has for re-engaging the public and restoring collective prosperity.

Andrea Sandor

Writer

Andrea is an American-Hungarian who grew up in the United States and is now based in Manchester.

She has an Anthropology background and is passionate about building a fairer and healthier society.

She writes about development, environment, active travel and civic participation, among other subjects.

Nick Prescott

Writer

Nick is a writer and researcher from Kent who decamped to Manchester in 2014.

He heads up the Communities Team which works on facilitating engagement with co-op members and under-represented communities around Manchester.

Alongside editing the monthly newsletter he writes on housing, development, environment and local democracy.

Nick is currently reading an MA in Political Science at the University of Manchester and is interested in autonomism, municipal socialism and local asset ownership.

Dale Anne McAulay

Writer

Dale Anne McAulay was an international mathematics teacher for forty years before returning to university to obtain a master’s degree in multi-media journalism at MMU.

Dale is a Canadian that has travelled to 60 countries, living and working in four of them and currently resides in Manchester.

She considers herself an educator, world traveller, multiculturalist, and an egalitarian.

Dale is a freelance journalist and sits on The Meteor’s Production Team and story circle.

The Meteor Making a Difference

The Meteor’s coverage of Manchester City Council suspending the planning committee during lockdown, prompted Greater Manchester Housing Action to deliver an open letter to the council demanding the committee’s reinstatement. The MEN and the Sunday Times also followed up on this story, increasing the pressure on the council to allow full scrutiny of its planning decisions.

Our collaboration in 2019 with The Bureau of Investigative Journalism’s ‘Dying Homeless’ investigation led to national statistics on homeless deaths in the UK being produced for the first time. Award winning journalist Maeve McClenaghan of the TBIJ said:

“The Meteor played a vital role in helping us get to the true figure of how many people were dying homeless. They were able to hone in on Manchester and reveal that at least 15 people had died in the city in 18 months. By taking part in this collaborative investigation the Meteor helped expose the tragic scale of deaths, and ensure those that passed away were not forgotten.”

Selling Manchester by the Offshore Pound’, an investigative series carried out with the help of the Centre for Investigative Journalism, highlighted the rapidly growing amount of property in the city owned by overseas companies. We provided an interactive online map covering Greater Manchester showing where these properties were and which companies owned them.

Our reporting in 2017 and 2018 on the lack of affordable housing in the city centre, was followed by coverage of these issues in the MEN & Guardian. This contributed to pressure on the council, who agreed to publish property development viability assessments – enabling greater public scrutiny.

Support our work

If you would like to support The Meteor’s work and do not wish to become a member, you can can make an individual contribution.

Your contribution can help us create an independent media source working in the interest of the local community, to amplify the voices, issues and ideas that are marginalised, under-represented or ignored by the mainstream.

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The Meteor is registered as a specific type of co-operative known as a Community Benefit Society. We are registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) under the legal name of The Manchester Meteor Limited, with the registration number: 8151. The Meteor’s entry on the FCA’s Mutuals Public Register is here.