Tuesday, 31 July 2018

In the company of the Manchester Bees ..... no.8

I tried stopping but alas I am addicted to them.



This is one of the Albert Square Bees

Location; Manchester










Pictures; Manchester Bees, 2018 from the collection of Andrew Simpson

Summer in the City

Now for no particular reason other than I took them and they are of Manchester, here is a short series celebrating places I like.


Location; Manchester

All have appeared before and some a long time ago.


Pictures; around Manchester 2002-2015

Monday, 30 July 2018

Walking the woods above Well Hall in 1977

Sometimes it is worth remembering just how pleasant it is to live in Eltham.

When we first arrived in 1964 I had no idea that just above where we lived on Well Hall Road were a stretch of woods which gave you a sense of being somewhere far away from the High Street and those busy roads which took you down to Greenwich or Woolwich.

But there they were a dense and wonderful set of woodlands in which you could walk for miles.

And so that is all I am going to say on the matter and just close by thanking my friend Jean for another  photograph of Eltham in the 1970s.

Picture; from the collection of Jean Gammons

Walking the city ..... that other tall building

Now as the new developments at Owen Street and other places continue to rise to the sky, I came across that other one.



Pretty soon this one will seem tame and run of the mill.

Location; Manchester

Picture; that other tower, 2018, from the collection of Andrew Simpson

Walking in the sun and sharing Chorlton’s history

Now given that the sun has been cracking the paving stones for weeks, I rather assumed that the Quirks Walk 3 would be a stroll under a cloudless and blue sky with suntan and shorts the order of the day.

But as we know Sunday dawned wet, grey and miserable, and the prospect of the history walk from Southern Cemetery down to Ken Foster’s Cycle shop must have appeared daunting to those who had signed up.

Nevertheless 16 braved the elements, and began the walk with more catching us up along the way.

And within minutes of starting, the rain had moved off towards Stockport, the sun had come out and by the time we finished, I wished I had opted for those shorts and flip flops.

For those that missed the trawl of our quirky past, we took in stories about Southern Cemetery, George Best, our lost open air theatre and large swimming pool in Chorlton Park and the case of Mr Mr Brundrett’s sparrows.

So, a typical Quirks Walk which everyone enjoyed.

Leaving me to thank Ken Foster, Sean, and all the  staff at the Cycle shop who provided that much needed refreshments at the end of the walk.

And of course a thank you also to the "Hardy 16 + 2" who took a gamble and walked the walk, and were rewarded with some fine anecdotes, a shed load of history and a bit of sunshine

The Quirks Walks will take their summer break, but will be back in the autumn, with more quirky historical rambles around Chorlton-cum-Hardy.

But for those who can't wait, there is always the book, which is a companion to the walks.

It is a celebration of all things quirky and interesting about Chorlton.

Inside its covers, there are 140 paintings, pictures and maps, with stories about the buildings and the people who live here, or have lived here and more than a few bizarre tales.

You can obtain your copy  from us at http://www.pubbooks.co.uk/ or Chorlton Book shop, 506 Wilbraham Road, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester M21 9AW 0161 881 6374

The walks are in association with Chorlton Voice/Chorlton Civic Society.

Location; Chorlton





Pictures; Quirks Walk 3, 2018, courtesy of Peter Topping

In the company of the Salford Bees ..... no. 1 the collection

With a special thank you to Gary Sykes who came across his in Media City and Angiebabe Moore who I think was in Salford.

Apoloies Angie if that is wrong











Location; Salford










Pictures; Manchester Bees, 2018 from Gary Styles and Angiebabe Moore

Sunday, 29 July 2018

Summer in the City

Now for no particular reason other than I took them and they are of Manchester, here is a short series celebrating places I like.




All have appeared before and some a long time ago.


Pictures; around Manchester 2002-2015

In the company of the Manchester Bees ..... no. 6 the Hacienda Bee

Now I thought it was time for a rest, having shedloads more in the collection.


But I couldn't resist Cathy Robertson's Hacienda bee.

Location; Manchester

Picture; the Hacienda Bee, 2018, courtesy of Cathy Robertson

Pictures that tell their own story ........ no. 1 ...... Charlton just a century and a bit ago

Now I have neglected Charlton and so here to make amends is a fine picture of the village in 1904.

Any one of our pedestrians staring back at us would I think recognise the view today, although the last time I was there the George public house was the Viceroy serving up curry instead of Pale Ale.

Location; Charlton


Picture; Charlton, 1904 from, Woolwich Through Time, 2014, courtesy of Kristina Bedford

Today ........ walk our Quirky past

We are back with that every popular stroll through our quirky past.


And there is the companion book, The Quirks of Chorlton-cum-Hardy, published in 2017, available from Chorlton Bookshop or direct from us at www.pubbooks.co.uk.

Saturday, 28 July 2018

Denbigh Villas ....... and the mystery of the missing coach house

Now, I like the way that not all of our history comes from a book or even from the memories of individuals.

The coach house, 2018
Sometimes you have go ferreting around, pulling up old council documents and equally old maps and matching them against street directories and adverts, and only then do those little bits of the past come together.

So it is with 1a Stockton Road which for as long as I can remember has been a lock up garage only shutting up shop around 2013.

But look closely at Peter’s picture and its origins as a coach house are clear.  To the left there are the large doors which would have given access for the carriage while above was the hayloft, with space to the right for the horse or horses.

It is a basic and familiar design, which was once replicated across Chorlton, and beyond.  They turn up in the grounds of even the most modest family homes and survive as flat conversions or workshops.

Ours stood in the garden of Denbigh Villas which were two semi detached properties, fronting High Lane.

If we want to be more precise, the coach house was in the garden of 59 so I guess it is reasonable to suppose the occupier of that house used or had the opportunity to use the building.

That said it might have been shared with 57, whose garden was dominated by two large green houses.

The mystery is just when the coach house ceased to be part of Denbigh Villas, because at present it is owned by a family who live opposite.

I could go and ask and I may do that but where is the fun in that?

The gardens of Denbigh Villas, 1894
Instead I shall ponder, using the OS map for 1933, which offers up the following clue, which is that by then the green houses have gone and what was left of the garden east of the coach house is marked as part of the Convent which had once been a school and is now the Islamic School for Girls.

So it would be reasonable to suppose that when the land was sold and the green houses demolished, our coach house also left Denbigh Villas.

By then its days as two grand homes may have also come to an end, but here the official documents are of no use, because both the record of who lived in both has been redacted because they might still be alive.*

And that means at present we have no idea whether the residents were posh enough to have owned or a horse and carriage or even if they had succumbed to the age of the motor car.

All I can tell is that neither property had started their long association with multi occupancy.  The record shows that both houses were occupied by one family each.
There is a suggestion that in the 1950s our coach house became the offices of a local builder, before it became that garage.  We shall see.

So that pretty much is that, except to say my grandparents had bought a big rambling old house on the edge of Derby, which had a coach house, and on a hot summer’s day there was still that distinctive smell of hay mixed with the lathe and plaster of the walls, along with the faint buzzing of trapped insects.

Location; Chorlton

Picture; the old coach house; 2018 from the collection of Peter Topping and the gardens of Denbigh Villas, 1894 from the OS map of South Lancashire, 1894 courtesy of Digital Archives Association, http://digitalarchives.co.uk/

*1939 Register

Walking in the City

Now for no particular reason other than I took them and they are of Manchester, here is a short series celebrating places I like.


All have appeared before and some a long time ago.

Location; Manchester


Pictures; around Manchester 2002-2015

Hailing a cab in Chorlton in the 1920s


Charles Croton was one of our taxi drivers and successful enough to have moved from horse and cab to motor vehicle by the 1920s and was listed in the telephone book by 1911.

All of which makes him a suitable candidate for a story.

He was another of those new people who moved in to Chorlton just as the place was expanding.  He had been born in London in 1867 and his father was also a hackney coach driver.

His earlier years are a little murky but I know he married Ann in 1887 and their first child was born two years later.  These were the years when they seemed to move about the country. Some of the children were born in Hulme but others in Littlemore in Oxfordshire, but by 1901 they were settled here in Chorlton on Sandy Lane.

So this makes them a perfect example of the families who moved here to take advantage of the new housing development which was going up mainly along Barlow Moor, Wilbraham and Manchester Roads and the areas off in each direction.

These were the middling people who mostly earned a living by working as office workers and professionals in the city taking advantage of the new railway which could whisk commuters into Manchester in under fifteen minutes.  But there were also more wealthy families who owned businesses as well as skilled semi skilled and manual workers who lived in the six shilling a week houses.

The Croton’s however occupied what had been a farm house and here the attraction may well have been the yard where the taxi could be kept as well as the close proximity to Shaw’s motor garage and petrol pump on Barlow Moor Road.

And in other ways they reflect this new Chorlton with all four of the children entering the new trades.  So while Reg the eldest followed his father into the cab trade, was an engineer in the Corporation electrical works and both daughter worked as shop assistants, one in confectionary and the other in drapery.

Charles died in the summer of 1926 but the business continued into the 1930s still on Sandy Lane.  Which takes me back to Reg.  The picture was taken in 1922 which would have made him thirty years old.  He is parked up in the station I guess waiting for the arrival of a train and a potential fare.

So there you have it, a little bit about one of our families.

Picture; from the Lloyd collection

Discovering the names of those who served in the Red Cross in Eltham during the Great War

I have moved just a little closer to some of the men and women who served during the Great War.

And it comes from an exciting new project by the Red Cross which is putting on line its records from the Great War.

Even before the war started the Red Cross had made preparations for coping with the large numbers of wounded who would be returning from the battlefields.

So when the conflict did begin voluntary hospitals were estchalished across the country.
Some were in school halls, and others in private houses and relied on the voluntary support of the local community.

Until recently I knew little of the men and women who served in the hospitals.

I had one list for the first year of the war of those who worked at one hospital, a few names from newspaper correspondence and the odd record of some of the administrators.

But the Red Cross records will bring them out of the shadows, for along with their names and addresses there are brief details of what they did.

Some are more detailed than others so those for Eltham in south east London describe particular duties. So I know that Miss Ada Fanny Boultbee, assisted the “sick & wounded, did  convoy duty. Well Hall Station any time day and night at 1. 1/2 hours notice. tea. Coffee, milk, ready.”

And provided a wealth of detail
“August 5th 1914. Struck Divisional Camp at Chichester. 7. 1914. Organizing Hos: cores: Soldiers & Sailors Institute Woolwich. 30th. 1914- Accepted responsibility of sick & wounded Convoy Duty Well Hall. Col: Stephenson with request for same from Col. Simpson. Herbert Hos:- Sept. 7th. 1914 First Convoy. 3/4 hour notice. All ready. 16 -1914 Mobilized by Col. Stephenson at "Cathay" Eltham. S.E. B.R.X.S. Brassard No.7. A.M.S. July - 1917 Demolized. Col: Simpson' of opinion that that Sick & Wounded Convoy Duty at Well Hall Station was no longer rec. under altered conditions of transport. Ada St.John. Boultbee. Hon. Comdt L /26.”

In time it will be possible to find out much more about their backgrounds and what happened to them after the war which in turn will throw light on the degree to which Eltham did its bit


Pictures; doctors and nurses and men from the Red Cross Hospital of Wood Lawn in Didsbury circa 1915, courtesy of Rob Mellor


*British Red Cross,  http://www.redcross.org.uk/About-us/Who-we-are/History-and-origin/First-World-War

In the company of the Manchester Bees ..... no. 5 down in Didsbury

Now, I have to thank the loads of people who in the last few days have shared their pictures of Manchester Bees.

Lisa Cunliffe, 2018

Lisa Cunliffe, 2018
Last week I had wandered from Exchange Square down to Deansgate and come across quite a few.

And in the course of the first blog story  I asked for contributions and they came in thick and fast.

From United and City bees courtesy of Angiebabe Moore, to my old friend Ron who captured a fair few in the Ref and Kay who not only shared hers from near the Cathedral but also has promised to send me some of Polly, the Clayton Hall Bee.

All and more will appear over the next few weeks.

But for now here is that Didsbury one, from the cameras of Lisa Cunliffe and Sarah Freeman

Location; Didsbury

Sarah Freeman, 2018


















Pictures; the Didsbury Bee, 2018 courtesy of Lisa Cunliffe and Sarah Freeman

Friday, 27 July 2018

Denbigh Villas ..... the house that lost its name

This is the story of two houses in Chorlton and how they seem to have lost their name.

Denbigh Villas, 2018, on the cusp of an exciting future
They were built in 1877 and were called Denbigh Villas and they began as fine residential homes, became a school in the early 20th century and finally ended their days as flats.

Now they are in the process of being developed into a series of apartments by Armistead Properties.*

And here comes the surprise because having started off as Denbigh Villas, the Council does not recognise the name and will not grant permission for it to be recognised as the official address.

It would appear that they have no record of such a name, falling back on the Post Office who does not list it as Denbigh Villas.

Added to which the Council does not accept the word Villa as an appropriate name, suggesting instead the word “House”.

Denbigh Villas, circa 1910, Mr Dadley's school
All of which is a little odd, given that in 1877 the Council’s own rate books record it as Denbigh Villas when it assessed the new houses on High Lane as having a rateable value of £46.

True by 1900 they had dropped the title on the Rate Books, but the name appears on the stone post outside the houses, and no doubt the postman would have delivered his letters to “Denbigh Villas”.

But perhaps that has something to do with its change of use into a school, run by Miss Booth who occupied just one of the two properties and a little later Mr Dadley who expanded the school into the other house.

And it may also be Miss Booth who confuses things by  listing the house as Springfield in 1904 in a local directory.

While Mr Dadley dropped all pretence at a name, preferring to advertise the place as Mr Dadley’s Grammar School specialising in training for “Law, Medical Accounts, Prelims, University, and Civil Services Exams” and listing it in the census record for 1911 as Chorlton, High Lane, School.

Denbigh Villas, 2016, waiting for change
I have to say, Mr Dadlely may be accurate with the address, but it suggests a slightly unromantic side to his nature.

I prefer Denbigh Villas, because that was its name, and it was where Josiah Thomas Slugg lived in the 1880s.

He is fascinating chap, who is best remembered for his book, Reminiscences of Manchester, published in 1881 which is a wonderful description of the city in the 1830s which includes vivid accounts of the stage coach inns, the shops and personalities that occupied the main streets, along with a detailed description of a journey Mr Slugg took on the Liverpool to Manchester Railway soon after it opened in 1830.

So Denbigh Villas has history, and has Chorlton history, so for that I think it should be allowed to continue to retain its historic name.

Next; Denbigh Villas ....... and the mystery of the missing coach house

Location Chorlton

Pictures; 57-59 High Lane, 2016 from the collection of Tony Goulding, in 1910 from the Lloyd Collection and in 2018 from the collection of Andrew Simpson

*Armistead Properties, http://www.armisteadproperty.co.uk/

Walking in the City

Now for no particular reason other than I took them and they are of Manchester, here is a short series celebrating places I like.





All have appeared before and some a long time ago.

Location; Manchester

Pictures; around Manchester 2002-2015

Queuing for the new history of Urmston, Flixton and Davyhulme

Now, the audience was large and expectant.

The large and expectant audience anticipating a good night
After all it is a long time since there has been a new book on the history of Urmston.*

And not just Urmston, because Michael Billington’s book, also covers Flixton and Davyhulme, and is very much a history for today, because as well as all the usual things you might expect, there are some detailed case studies of people and places, like Simpsons the Ready Made Food business.

As an Urmston lad, Michael was keen to tell the story of the people of the three townships, celebrating their common past and uncovering the bits that other historians missed out.

Michael talking about the book
It involved a lot of research, plenty of conversations with the locals, and a trawl of his own extensive picture collection.

So I was not surprised that over 140 people turned out last night to share the book launch.

We were treated to an introduction from the Reverend Karen Marshall, and an extensive talk by Michael on the book and his own connection with Urmston finishing with a question and answer session.

Michael and Ildikó
And along with the presentation Michael, and his Hungarian friend, Ildikó Csige performed a selection of tunes from Hungary.

One lone voice questioned the connection between a book launch and the music, which most in the room thought churlish, and was nicely explained away by the chap who pointed out that after the
Uprising in 1956, Urmston became home to Hungarian refugees.

The pensive author
Not that there really had to be a justification for an entertaining fifteen minutes.

Book launches are meant to be fun and so why not have music?

Especially given that we were not in a familiar venue for such an event, but instead had been invited in to St Clements’ Church, which was built in 1867, just as Urmston, Flixton and Davyhulme were on the cusp of change.

And there is a nice sense of continuity in being in the church as some of those referred to in the book will have had their own connection with St Clement’s as did many of the audience.

So it was a good night.

The book sales went well and the selection of wines and nibbles were excellent.

The book
My only regret was that I didn’t have time to talk to the staff from Urmston Bookshop who helped organise the event, but I have their address and web site and as I collect book shops like other people collect souvenirs, I will catch the 25 from Chorlton and pay them a visit.

All of which just leaves me to commend the excellent book by Michael, extend a thank you to Ildikó Csige for the music, and to Paul Sherlock who took the pictures and kindly let me use a selection.

But that is not quite the end, because Jenny, Michaels’ partner told me she already has his Christmas present, which he had already signed and which will be instantly recognizablable from its blue and black cover, with photographs of Urmston, Flixton and Davyhulme.

Now that I like.

For the rest of us the book can be bought from Urmston Bookshop, online from the History Press or direct from Michael.

Location; Urmston

Pictures; the book launch, 2018, from the collection of Paul Sherlock

*A new book for Urmston; https://chorltonhistory.blogspot.com/search/label/A%20new%20book%20for%20Urmston

**Urmston Bookshop, http://www.urmston-bookshop.co.uk/

Thursday, 26 July 2018

The Rec in 1933


Long before it was Beech Road Park it was the “Rec” and depending on which name you use marks you out as a newcomer or a local.

 Now we have always called it the Rec and so do all my children which I guess says something about us.

Of all the pictures of the Rec in the collection this is my favourite and I have to own up it’s because it features our house.

The date on the postcard is 1933 and the path running along the inside parallel to Beech Road has long gone.
Otherwise apart from the size of the trees it is a scene not so different from today.

Picture; from the Lloyd collection

Walking the the City

Now for no particular reason other than I took them and they are of Manchester, here is a short series celebrating places I like.




All have appeared before and some a long time ago.

Location;Manchester


Pictures; around Manchester 2002-2015

The winning Chorlton competitor is .....

Now, if you have to hand over a book as a prize for winning a caption competition I can think of no where better than Chorlton Bookshop.

So yesterday, we presented Kathy Lee with a copy of our Chorlton pubs book.

Kathy had penned the winning caption which Miss Mabel Ackroyd judged to be the best.

Lawrence Beedle was on hand to take the picture, just leaving me and Peter Topping to pose with Kathy.

The full story of that competition can be read at The winner of the Chorlton Caption Competition is ...........*

And that is it.

Location; Chorlton Bookshop

Picture; Kathy Lee, Peter Topping and Andrew Simpson, 2018, courtesy of Lawrence Beedle

** The winner of the Chorlton Caption Competition is ........... https://chorltonhistory.blogspot.com/2018/07/the-winner-of-chorlton-caption.html

Wednesday, 25 July 2018

Uncovering a bit of the life of Lewis St J R Clutterbuck of Westmount Road in Eltham

Gertie's postcard 1915
Recently I was with Gertie about to send her postcard from Westmount Road in 1915.


She was keen to tell her friend E of how “I like the nursery work so much better so have taken a nurse’s place 2 children."

And it may be that her employers were the Clutterbuck’s who were in the house just four years earlier and at that time employed a child nurse for their daughter Jessie who was then just two.

I would really like to have found out more about Gertie but to date this is the only reference we have.

It is one of those frustrating things that sometimes people just fall through the cracks.  Not that I haven’t given up hope of tracing her, and the first long shot might be E whose surname we have and an address in Sudbury.

But as ever it is the people of property who leave more of a trail, and so it is with Lewis St J R Clutterbuck, his wife Isabella.

Royal Artillery Barracks, 1906
Lewis had been born in Dublin into an army family in 1885.    In 1891 Lewis and his parents were stationed in Chester Castle, and a decade later Lewis aged 16 was training to be an officer in Woolwich.

He married Isabella in 1907 in Dundalk and by 1911 they were in Eltham but I suspect only just because Jessie their daughter had been born in Henson in 1909.

And it is Lewis’s military record that allows us to trace him for the next fifty years.

In 1916 he was sent out to the Western Front, survived the war and was back in south east London after the Great War.

Now this I know this because in the October of 1919 when applying for his war medals his address was given as West Park Road in Eltham. Later for a short period he was in south West London before returning in the late 1920s to live on Westcombe Park Road in Blackheath.

Here he may have stayed until the late 1930s when he moved to Bishops Waltham in Hampshire where he died in a nursing home in 1965.

Church Parade, Royal Artillery Woolwich, 1939
He had steadily risen through the ranks, from a Lieutenant in the Royal Field Artillery in 1911, to a Major by 1916 and a Colonel by 1932 and along the way became an O.BE.

From 1932 he served on the Ordinance Committee of the Royal Arsenal and was still there five years later.

Now there is a lot still to find out about him and his wife Isabella and Jessie, not least what they were doing living in Newcastle-upon-Tyne in 1941 which may have been a war posting.

But it is enough to reflect on just where a simple postcard can take you.

Pictures; from the collection of Andrew Simpson, and pictures of Royal Artillery Barracks, 1906, and Church Parade, 1939 issued by Tuck & Sons, from the series Woolwich, courtesy of TuckDB,  http://tuckdb.org/

Be careful what you wish for, .... snow on the green circa 1979


Now I know the old saying, be careful what you wish for, but in this hot summer I couldn’t resist this picture of the green in the snow sometime at the end of the 1970s.

Location; Chorlton


Picture; from the collection of Tony Walker, 1970s

Summer in the City

Now for no particular reason other than I took them and they are of Manchester, here is a short series celebrating places I like.

All have appeared before and some a long time ago.









Pictures; around Manchester 2002-2015

Down at Chorlton Bookshop ...... with a prize and a story ... today at midday

Now to celebrate the Great Chorlton Beer and Cider Festival, we offered up a poster competition.*

We adapted an old picture postcard and asked for a slogan which would fit the picture and have a suitable Chorlton/beer and cider theme.

There was as you would expect a good response and Miss Mable Ackroyd of Martledge selected the four she liked best of which the winner was by Kathy Lee.

And today at noon in Chorlton Bookshop, Miss Lee will receive her prize of a copy of our Chorlton pubs book.

So why not join us?

Location Chorlton Bookshop, at noon today

Picture, the Competition, adapted by Peter Topping from a picture postcard issued in 1907 by Raphael Tuck and Son, and now in the catalogue of Tuck DB, https://tuckdb.org/

* The winner of the Chorlton Caption Competition is ........... https://chorltonhistory.blogspot.com/2018/07/the-winner-of-chorlton-caption.html

Tuesday, 24 July 2018

Walking the canal to Cornbrook no.4 ......... discarded things

This will be the last of the short series accompanying Andy Robertson on his walk along the canal to Cornbrook.

I say the last but like me he is fascinated by this stretch of land which regularly yields up lots of relics from out industrial past.

But perhaps not this time, for I fear we are with Derek the Dumper and his selection of unwanted things he chose to deposit, which are only slightly less unpleasant, than the scrawling of Sylvia and Sidney which do nothing for me.

Some might argue the graffiti is brightening up a grey and drab spot, but I like grey and drab which perfectly fit with this post industrial scene.

Pictures; walking the canal to Cornbrook, 2018, from the collection of Andy Robertson

Looking for the unexpected ....... on Manor Drive ...... in Chorlton

Manor Drive runs in a loop, starting and ending at Darley Avenue.

Most of the houses will date I think from the late 1920s or early 1930s, and on an autumn day with the leaves on the turn it is a very pleasant place to walk.

And it has surprises, one of which is the Kagyu Ling Buddhist Centre, which is situated at number 45.

Peter came across it recently and decided to paint it while I went looking for its history.

My starting point was their website, which has a blog as well as a detailed description of their activities.

But because I like history I went looking for the building’s past, and very quickly came to a dead end.

I know that it was there by 1939 when it was listed as vacant, which leaves me to start the search at the directories for that year and work back till I find when it was built.

Of course there may be someone on Manor Drive who can help, bit in the meantime I will leave you with Peter’s painting.

Location; Chorlton

Painting; Kagyu Ling Buddhist Centre. Painting © 2018 Peter Topping, Paintings from Pictures.  The Photo was taken from their Website

Web: www.paintingsfrompictures.co.uk

Facebook: Paintings from Pictures https://www.facebook.com/paintingsfrompictures


* Kagyu Ling Buddhist Centre, http://www.dechen.org/buddhist-centres/manchester/

Monday, 23 July 2018

In the company of Manchester Bees .... walking the city

Now I didn’t start out to photograph the bee installations ...... it just happened.



And as I went from Exchange Square down to Deansgate, other people were doing the same, except they had come prepared with maps showing the locations which left me at a disadvantage.

Still I got a fair few, and over the next week and bit I will share them.

For now, here are four to sample, taken in Exchange Square, St Ann’s Square, Albert Square and St Peter’s Square.

And since I posted this about an hour ago the Bee pictures are flooding in.   Brilliant and thank you to every one.

Location; Manchester

Pictures; the bees in Manchester, 2018, from the collection of Andrew Simpson

Summer in the City

Now for no particular reason other than I took them and they are of Manchester, here is a short series celebrating places I like.


All have appeared before and some a long time ago.








Pictures; around Manchester 2002-2015

Walking the canal to Cornbrook no.3 ......... flowers and things

Now I have been walking the canal to Cornbrook with Andy Robertson.

To be more accurate Andy did the walk I have just posted the pictures.

Along the way he came up with a series of mysteries and puzzles which some have now been solved.

But today it’s less a puzzle and more just an observation on how quickly nature claims back the land.

Once and it will be within living memory the stretch of land on either side of the Duke’s Canal and beside the Ship Canal were full of buildings, docks and railway rack where industry busied itself.

All that is now in the past and the flowers are back.

I have no idea if they are the ones that inhabited the area before the first industrial development of the site or if they are modern invaders.

But someone will know.

Suffice to say, that Andy liked them and so do I.

Pictures; walking the canal to Cornbrook, 2018, from the collection of Andy Robertson