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News

OBITUARY: RICHARD PANKHURST

News comes in of the death of Richard Pankhurst, son of Sylvia, arguably Manchester’s greatest ever citizen, who has passed away aged 89 in Ethiopia and might well be afforded a state funeral.

Here’s the piece I’ve written for the Manchester Evening News.

Richard Pankhurst, the only son of Sylvia Pankhurst, the suffragette leader who was one of Manchester’s greatest ever figures, has died aged 89 at his home in Ethiopia…

Calls have gone out to grant the late academic and political agitator a state funeral in the east African country.

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ST MICHAEL’S – When will the council stop the rot?

Here is the piece I’ve written for the Manchester Evening News about the history of the site around Bootle Street due to be demolished so that Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville can erect two nasty noxious overgrown buildings that will ruin part of Manchester.

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If the highly-controversial St Michael’s development around Bootle Street near Manchester Town Hall goes ahead it will eradicate in one blow a huge slice of little-known but fascinating Manchester history. The proposed towers will require the demolition of three buildings: the former Bootle Street police station, the Ralph Abercrombie pub next door and the Reform Synagogue on Jackson’s Row. Think of all the villains that have passed through Bootle Street. But think also of the innocent…
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THE DE-LUXE MANCHESTER TOWN HALL HISTORICAL TOUR

You have just about a year to be taken round Manchester Town Hall by the effortlessly entertaining guides of New Manchester Walks.

This is a journey into the historical heart of the city’s greatest building, its architecture, paintings and politics.

Please book through eventbrite by clicking “Continue Reading” below and following the link for the date you require.

* The cost is £8 (Pre-Raphaelites & Murals £10) and the tour lasts two hours.

* Dates, below.
* Wed 22 Feb, 11am. SOLD OUT!
* Sun 5 Mar, 11am. ONLY 3 TICKETS LEFT
* Sat 11 Mar, 11am.
* Sun 19 Mar, 11am.
* Mon 27 Mar, 11am.
* Tue 28 Mar, 11am (Pre-Raphaelites & Murals, starting at the Art Gallery).
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COACH TOURS: BOOK A TOUR FOR YOUR GROUP

Now is the time for your social club, U3A group, Probus outfit, student body … to book a coach tour with our effortlessly entertaining guides.
There are so many to choose from:
* The Great Treasures of Manchester
* Wild and Wuthering West Yorkshire
* L. S. Lowry’s sights and settings of Salford
* The Beatles’ Liverpool
* Chi-Chi Cheshire
* The History of Manchester United…
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Historic Canal Cruise – SUNDAY 26 FEBRUARY

• Our popular canal cruise leaves at 11am and includes illuminating one way commentary by the queen of canal guides Salford-born Sue Grimditch, plus the usual great service from the crew of the L S Lowry barge, as we make our way along the Bridgewater canal, through Pomona Lock and onto the Manchester Ship Canal, the Quays and Media City.
• Please book through eventbrite or www.quaytickets.com, 0843 208 0500. Cost: £18.
• Meet at the water’s edge outside the Castlefield Hotel, Liverpool Road, M3 4JR.
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THE DE-LUXE MIDLAND HOTEL TOUR

It’s what you’ve been waiting for: Ed Glinert and co. taking you or your group, club, works outfit, society … around this magnificent building.
• Public dates: Sun 26 Feb (SOLD OUT), Sun 2 Apr (SOLD OUT), Sun 21 May (14 EXTRA TICKETS NOW PUT ON SALE) – all at 1.30pm.
• Meet outside the hotel on Peter Street.
• Please book through Quaytickets or eventbrite to avoid disappointment.
• Also ideal for private tours for groups of around 20 people.

Hear the history, soak in the sleek style and lounge in its luxurious locations. Then, when the tour’s over, take tea and tiffin or a tipple in the Octagon bar. What a great way of spending two hours or so!
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NEW “BACK OF HOUSE” TOWN HALL TOUR

Manchester Town Hall has introduced a new “Back of House” tour which will run on three Sundays: 5 Feb, 5 March and 2 April at 1.30pm and 3pm from the Lloyd Street entrance (although more slots might be added if there is sufficient take-up). The tour lasts an hour. Please book through eventbrite to ensure a place. Please note this is not an historical tour and has been devised by the council. all the dates are now sold out apart from Sun 2 Apr at 11.30am. Please click “Continue Reading” to find the link.
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BOOK A TALK WITH MANCHESTER’S WITTIEST PUBLIC SPEAKER: ED GLINERT

If you don’t fancy a walk, book us for a talk!

Ed Glinert is back giving talks with a monthly slot at Central Library and regular dates at Manchester Cathedral, so book him for your social club, U3A group, Probus set, National Trust outfit or local history society to give an illustrated talk on one of a huge variety of subjects:
* The Pankhursts.
* 10 Manchester Inventions That Shook the World.
* Peterloo.
* Royal Scandal Through the Ages.
* The Lonely Life of L. S. Lowry.
* Engels & Marx in Manchester.
* The Manchester Ship Canal.
* Alan Turing.
* The Fenian Hangings of 1867.
* The Secret History of Manchester.
* Manchester architecture (how the city’s main buildings stole their design from existing works).
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IF YOU WANT TO DISCOVER MANCHESTER read on, for the perfect introduction to the city

Manchester is the first city of the industrial revolution, the city that shaped the modern world, the industrial strength city. Whether you’re new to Manchester or looking to be refreshed at the parts reached before, the “Welcome to Manchester” tour is the only choice, taking you to the great sights, the landmark locations, the must-see attractions.

In January and February we are running this for private bookings only: small groups, big groups, medium-sized groups. Contact us on 07769 29 8068 for more details.
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Ancoats: Workshop of the World – SUNDAY 5 FEBRUARY

Next tour: Sun 5 February 2017.
Meet: Outside the Band on the Wall, 1.30pm.

Industry began in Ancoats, a factory hoot from Manchester city centre. In 1700 this had been a semi-rural enclave by the river Medlock, Ancoats Hall home to the lords of the Manchester manor. By 1800 this was a teeming, squalid suburb, blackened with soot, deafened with the noise of thundering machinery, the smell of belching smoke hanging in the air.

The conditions were shocking: the noise of thundering machinery, suffocating air, high accident rates and notorious employment practices at the expense of an emaciated, underpaid workforce slave-driven for unsustainably long hours amidst disease, darkness, damp and desperate heat, living in dingy streets of tiny workers’ houses, jerry-built two-up two down brick boxes standing back-to-back so that as many properties as possible could be squeezed into the smallest of spaces.

The late 20th century saw Ancoats die. The mills shut, the workshops wound down, the canal almost dried up. Now it’s all cleaned up. The mills are modern workshops; the factories smart apartments, while new developments such as the much lauded New Islington project with its funkily named Chips Building and Dutch-styled houses are attracting investment…
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