"Ben-UK's Manchester page" Top 5 Page for this destination Manchester by Ben-UK

Manchester Travel Guide: 1,770 reviews and 4,153 photos

My home city -- I've lived here all my life and of course seen many changes over the years, some good, some bad.

The construction of the Arndale Shopping Centre, which opened in 1976, was the first relatively recent major change to the appearance of the city centre -- the stark, yellow-tiled edifice drew complaints generally but it's prominence has since softened with change and the latest glass-fronted extension will fit in with surrounding developments.

The demise of nearby Salford docks in the 1970's gave way to the inspired Salford Quays development and the recent Lowry Centre and Imperial War Museum additions there have made it an excellent location.

1992 saw dramatic change on the city streets with the introduction of the Metrolink tram system (the last time Manchester had seen trams was in 1949) -- plans are afoot to further develop the network of this hugely popular transport system.

The IRA bombing of 1996 (thankfully no loss of life) whilst tragic for affected businesses, actually led to a regeneration of the area at the Deansgate end of Market Street and stores such as Harvey Nichols have now made it their Manchester home.

Manchester's roots are in the cotton industry and the warehouses around the city connected to that trade are now being converted into fashionable living accommodation.

The canal network that serviced the Industrial Revolution has been cleaned-up and canal-side locations are now desired for both offices and housing.

The staging of the 2002 Commonwealth Games saw further improvements to Piccadilly train station and Piccadilly itself and further planned developments in this area should see Piccadilly Gardens re-establish itself as the focal point of the city -- I hope so anyway ...

So, lots going on in Manchester -- it's a good place to live, big-city attractions, friendly people and not far from the countryside.

This Intro photo is of the Old Wellington Inn (ahead) and Sinclair's Oyster Bar (to the right) in the city-centre area known as The Shambles.

The Old Wellington Inn dates back to the 16th century and Sinclair's probably to the mid18th century. However, Sinclair's has actually been moved twice -- once in the 1970's to make way for the nearby Arndale shopping centre and both pubs were moved some 150 metres from their original site as part of redevelopment after the aforementioned IRA bomb hit this part of the city in 1996.

Manchester Town Hall

Opened in 1877, the Town Hall dominates Albert Square in the city centre.

12 large murals by the Pre-Raphaelite painter Ford Madox Brown grace the interior.

Albert Square is mainly pedestrianised with bars and cafes surrounding the perimeter.

Salford Quays

A view of the Quays with the Lowry Centre in the background.

The Salford Quays development has been one of the major successes here in recent years -- the old Salford Docks area has been completely transformed with waterside housing, a shopping mall and the the opening of the Lowry Centre and the Imperial War Museum North.


** For details of the Manchester Visitor Information Centre,
please see General Tips **


  • Intro Updated Oct 24, 2010
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Reviews (57)

Comments (61)

  • Bunsch's Profile Photo
    Jan 13, 2014 at 9:52 AM

    I'll be in Manchester from March 30-April 3, and would love to stand you an ale in your favorite pub just to thank you for this page!

    • Ben-UK's Profile Photo
      Mar 3, 2014 at 11:28 PM

      Hi Adrienne - just to let you know that I'm now going away on holiday on Monday 31st March (later than originally planned) and for family reasons I won't be available on Sunday 30th March - however, if by any chance you're in Manchester on Saturday 29th March do let me know. Sorry about that, but I hope you'll understand. Greetings from England :)

    • Bunsch's Profile Photo
      Mar 4, 2014 at 8:42 AM

      No worries, Ben. Enjoy your holiday!

  • ranger49's Profile Photo
    Oct 17, 2012 at 1:02 PM

    I really enjoy browsing your vivid pages of the town of my birth.

  • MalenaN's Profile Photo
    Jan 29, 2012 at 4:08 AM

    I will visit Manchester for a day in about a month, and I have just started to do some reseach about what there is to do. I got some good ideas from your page!

  • ettiewyn's Profile Photo
    Nov 24, 2011 at 7:11 AM

    Hi Paul, a very interesting page with so many great Off The Beaten Path tips! Thank you!

  • hunterV's Profile Photo
    Oct 24, 2010 at 11:54 AM

    Hello, Paul! Thanks for your useful and interesting page! ><><><

  • spidermiss's Profile Photo
    Aug 23, 2010 at 11:48 AM

    Hi Ben I love your Manchester Page. I live in Leeds but always visit Manchester if I want a change of the city scenery! Popping over next month for a day trip for the theatre and what takes my fancy. Best wishes, Dawn

  • canuck68's Profile Photo
    Sep 16, 2009 at 8:14 PM

    I enjoyed my tour of Manchester through your eyes. It looks like an interesting city.

  • Apr 18, 2009 at 8:50 AM

    Hi Ben. My husband and I (Yanks) are moving to the UK in the fall and we're considering Manchester. We want to rent a 2/3 bedroom house with a small garden near transport. Any neighborhood suggestions? Thanks.

  • traceyspacey's Profile Photo
    Feb 5, 2009 at 10:30 AM

    I really like your page on Manchester. My boyfriend and I are moving from Leeds to Manchester in the next few weeks. I can confirm that despite the recent snow that it was in fact sunny in Manchester on Tuesday

  • angiebabe's Profile Photo
    Nov 19, 2008 at 4:12 PM

    hi and Manchester looks very appealing in your photos thanks!

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