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Poet beats Peter Mandelson in race to be Manchester University chancellor


Lemn Sissay – poet, broadcaster and playwright – gets 7,131 votes, beating Hallé music director Sir Mark Elder and the Labour grandee to ceremonial post

The Labour grandee Peter Mandelson has failed in his bid to become chancellor of Manchester University despite a concerted lobbying campaign, losing out to a poet from Wigan.

Lemn Sissay, a poet, broadcaster and playwright who grew up in care, was elected in an electronic vote by the university alumni with 7,131 votes. Afterwards, one of Sissay’s most vocal supporters described him as an “inspirer”, while Mandelson was a “conspirer”.

@helenpidd Lemn is an inspirer, M a conspirer. M's links to Putin. M's lack of local knowledge. L knows the city inside out.

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