Pubs of Manchester

All pubs within the city centre and beyond.
A history of Manchester's hundreds of lost pubs.

Saturday, 29 January 2011

Manhattan, Spring Gardens

Manhattan Sound, Spring Gardens. (c) Debbie at MDMA.

Manhattan or Manhattan Sound was a small club, possibly a basement venue, on Spring Gardens where occasionally local bands like The Smiths [1] and Simply Red [2] cut their teeth (note the amusing John Bull story).

Manhattan, Spring Gardens. (c) dubwise-er at MDMA.

We've heard that it may have been lost to an underground car park, but as below, it may also have been on the corner of Spring Gardens and Fountain Street, now offices.

Possible former location of Manhattan, Spring Gardens. (c) googlemaps.


Thursday, 27 January 2011

Name that pub

"Manchester, 1977" is all we've got to go off.  The photo comes from John Bulmer as featured on the How to be a Retronaut site with the now identified Broadway Inn, Ordsall, so may be Ordsall as well...

(c) John Bulmer at How to be a Retronaut.

Wonder who this smart looking fella is:

Tramps, Princess Street

Tramps, Princess Street. (c) dubwise-er at Manchester District Music Archive.

Tramps club on Princess Street, next to the Cyprus Tavern as the flier shows, hosted the Frantic Elevators in November '82.  Seeing as the Frantic Elevators were Mick Hucknall's original band, it would be rude to say the venue was aptly named.  Sounds like Tramps was suitably scruffy though: "it made the Cyprus look like a veritable palace [1]."  (Interestingly, there is mention of Tramps on a flier in the closed Rowntrees venue on Brown Street as shown in this entry for Shorts Ltd.).

Former location of Tramps, Princess Street. (c) googlemaps.


Shorts Ltd., Brown Street

The sign above the bar in Shorts Ltd. on Brown Street read "Shorts Ltd., 1672" - unlikely to be its Est. year!  Another themed pub which seemed to be all the rage in the 1970s, though what that theme was is unclear, as Shorts had riding gear, horses brasses and a stag's head, as well as bars named after Micawber and Dickens himself.  It was a John Smiths house, offering bitter, mild plus keg Courage Tavern and Harp to accompany the fruitie, TV table tennis, pool table and jukebox [1].  The exact location of Shorts Ltd. on Brown Street is unknown at present.  Here's a 1973 photo looking down Brown Street towards King Street from King Street for now (just seen the Post Office on the right).  Could this 1973 'Rowntrees' (not the Hanging Ditch Rowntrees) in the Westminster Buildings have later become Shorts Ltd.?  Note the sign which says "Rowntrees is now closed... Tramps" (Tramps was a club over on Princess Street).

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).

Footlights Bar, Aytoun Street

The Grand, former Grand Hotel, Aytoun Street. (c) philipjames.

Another bar in the old Grand Hotel on Aytoun Street, Footlights Bar was rebuilt in 1969 after a fire destroyed it.  Only a couple of decades later and the hotel has closed, converted into 'The Grand' apartments in 1988 by Ian Simpson Architects [1].  The Gaeity Bar was the main non-residents bar and it, like the Footlights Bar, was blessed with pristine loos.  The gents had hot water, plugs, towels, mirrors and shaving sockets - clearly an extravagance in the downtrodden '70s [2].

Footlights Bar, Aytoun Street. (c) Manchester Pub Surveys [2].

2. The Manchester Pub Guide: Manchester & Salford City Centres, Manchester Pub Surveys (1975).  

Goblet Wine Bar, Mount Street

Another of the public bars in the Midland Hotel opened in around 1975, the Goblet Wine Bar (not to confused with Goblets Wine Bar on Bridge Street - now the Bridge) was a one-room basement bar.  A tiled staircase led down to a French-themed room with chequered tables, cane hatstands and waiter service.  Doesn't sound like one for the beer lover with champagne and wine the order of the day to accompany retro delicacies such as steak sandwiches or chicken-in-a-basket [1].

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Golden Eagle, Hardman Street

Former location of Golden Eagle, Hardman Street. (c) googlemaps.

On the left hand side of Hardman's Street (as it was known in the 1800s), just off Deansgate, was the Golden Eagle.  Where the small area of greenery is before the MEN building is Sidney Street leading to Tivoli Street, but in the 1800s it lead to the less exotic Thompson Street.  The Golden Eagle was one door past Sidney Street, placing it in the middle of this row of low hedges; the pub also had a rear entrance on Thompson Street [1].

Former location of Golden Eagle, Hardman Street. (c) googlemaps.

1. Manchester City Centre 1849, Alan Godfrey Maps (2008).

St Ann's Tavern, St Ann's Square

St Ann's Tavern was a basement bar on the square, and was possibly Horts or Ronnies in an earlier time [TBC].  It sounds like it was one of Manchester's first proper continental beer bars, with Carlsberg Hof, Heineken Special Export and bottled Lowenbrau, Kronenbourg, Reschs and Castlemaine on offer, as well as the more usual Tetley and Guinness.  There was an Italian bar billiard machine in St Ann's Tavern and next door was Henekey Inn steak and schnitzel bar [1].

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).

Alaska Bar & Café, Whitworth Street West

Former location of Alaska Bar & Café, Whitworth Street West. (c) googlemaps.

Located in Arch 69 on Whitworth Street West at the Hacienda-end of the street, Alaska was a pre-club bar in the 1990s.  This 1999 advert for Planet K (now Mint Club on Oldham Street) is the only real evidence of the existence of Alaska:  "Fat City at Alaska.  Heavyweight, pre-club warm up. 9-11pm. Free."  It lasted a few years longer than the Hacienda, Venue et al, but may have closed in the early 2000s and it's now Belvoir estate agents.

Alaska, Whitworth Street West. (c) MDMA.

Monday, 24 January 2011

Crescent / Brick House, Great Ancoats Street / Back Crescent

The Crescent, Great Ancoats Street, 1960s. (c) Neil Richardson [1].

The Crescent, an old Chesters beerhouse on Great Ancoats Street, is pictured here in 1959 on the corner of Tame Street, which used to run parallel with and just west of Every Street.  The vault was popular with "Chesters men" while the women used the lounge where Country & Western music would predominate.  Other beers on offer in this popular local in the '70s were cask Whitbread Trophy, Heineken and Guinness [2].  The Crescent later became the Brick House but was pulled down in 1986, after good innings of almost one and a half centuries - the earliest recorded beerhouse keeper was George Crossley in 1843 [1].  This part of Great Ancoats Street was widened in the late 1980s so the exact former location of the Crescent is not immediately obvious; the 1849 map of Higher Ardwick shows it was originally on the corner of Back Crescent and Mount Street, just set back from the main road [3].

Crescent, Back Crescent, Ancoats. (c) Alan Godfrey Maps [3].

1. The Old Pubs of Ancoats, Neil Richardson (1987).
2. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).
3. Upper Ardwick 1849, Alan Godfrey Maps (2000).

Royal Oak, Great Ducie Street

Royal Oak, Great Ducie Street. (c) Manchester Pub Surveys [1].

The Royal Oak was the original Boddingtons brewery tap with the new-build Brewery Tap / Brewers Arms replacing it, probably in the 1980s.  It was a quiet pub with outside toilets overlooking the brewery, frequented mainly by nearby workers at dinner time and blokes from the nearby hostel.  Despite this, it was highly rated for the superb and cheap Boddies beer [1].  These were the days when Boddingtons beer was a fine pint, highly hopped, more bitter than any other session ale, and a fine example of what is today sometimes referred to as 'Manchester Pale Ale.'

Former site of Royal Oak (& Brewery Tap), Great Ducie Street. (c) Google 2011. View Larger Map.

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres, Manchester Pub Surveys (1975).

Sunday, 23 January 2011

Bridge Inn, Pin Mill Brow

Former location of Bridge Inn, Pin Mill Brow. (c) googlemaps.

It's difficult to believe but here on Pin Mill Brow where Great Ancoats Street meets Ashton Old Road used to stand the Bridge Inn.  Seen here in 1958, it backed onto the River Medlock, hence its name, as seen here in 1958.  These photos from 1960 and 1964 show this Chesters pub that was still open as recently as 1975.  It was described in the Manchester Pub Guide as "standing in splendid isolation... a memorial to the old Chesters Brewery in nearby Ardwick... A traditional but tarnished house, it looks to be awaiting the pleasure of the demolition gang" [1].  As the 1958 photo shows, it was on the corner of Pin Mill Brow and Ancoats Island, which can still be seen on the old layout thanks to googlemaps.

Former location of Bridge Inn, Pin Mill Brow. (c) googlemaps.

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).

Jersey Lily, Jersey Street

Jersey Lily, Jersey Street, Ancoats, 1992. (c) Alan Winfield with permission.

The Jersey Lily estate pub was built in 1968 next to where an old Wilsons house, the Murrays Arms, once stood on the corner of Jersey Street and Kemp Street [2].  These days Kemp Street doesn't exist having been lost, first to the four storey council flats that popped up in the 1960s (as seen here and here) and then to more modern ones which again look doomed today.  The Jersey Lily was built to serve this council house development which included the huge but now condemned Ancoats high-rise flats on Wadeford Close, off Oldham Road.  The pub was named after the street on which it stood the and the sign depicts the 'Jersey Lily', the famous actress and lover of King Edward VII. 

Jersey Lily, Jersey Street. (c) The Manchester Pub Guide [1].

The Jersey Lily, popular with younger locals in the 1970s, was originally a Groves & Whitnall house, and in the '70s offered Greenall Whitley and Guinness [1]. By the time Alan Winfield visited in 1992, two Whitbread ales were on offer - Flowers Bitter and Boddingtons Bitter.  Judging from the old maps of Ancoats, Kemp Street was approximately where Jersey Street bends sharply left, so the Jersey Lily will have stood on the corner where there looks to be a pub-shaped gap.  I presume the second wave of council house building saw off the Jersey Lily in the late '90s as this canal guide from 1998 still refers to it.  

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres, Manchester Pub Surveys (1975).
2. The Old Pubs of Ancoats, Neil Richardson (1987).

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Bridge Inn, Fairfield Street

Former Bridge Inn, Fairfield Street. (c) googlemaps.

This oddly extended building on Fairfield Street, on the less-used approach to Piccadilly Station, looks like an old pub.  Lo and behold, it was, as this 1969 photo confirms, with the front extension unmissable.  It was the Bridge Inn, named after the dominating railway viaduct and bridge in the shadows of which it sits.  These two 1903 photos show the rear of the pub, and hint at the houses that once stood in this now derelict area.  It was a three-roomed house with a central bar, only the smoke room being fitted out in any comfort with carpets and soft seats.  In the 1970s the Bridge Inn was a rare example of a central Manchester pub with a busy billiards table.  Typical of the real ale desert that much of the city was in the '70s, the beer engines on the bar were for show only, and only keg Whitbread and Guinness was on offer [1]; a few years earlier Chesters was also served as the 1969 photo above shows.

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).

St Peter's Tavern, Peter Street

The St Peter's Tavern is described as a pleasant, quiet bar with a small shop-type frontage, situated between the Free Trade Hall and Deansgate (so probably where Bar 38 is now, in the same old block that housed the Gallery).  Great Northern Bitter was served by handpump and the rare sight of Watney's keg mild was also seen supped alongside wine by the bar-propping drinkers.  Modern decor plus jukebox, fruit machines and TV table tennis and the fact the St Peter's Tavern was bypassed by the Free Trade Hall and Opera House crowds, meant "this small, friendly, comfortable, warm tavern is hard to fault [1]."

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).

Pepys Sandwich Bar, Back Pool Fold

Pepys Sandwick Bar, Back Pool Fold. (c) Derek Parr with permission.

In the 1970s this odd little place tucked away on Back Pool Fold was perhaps Manchester's most exclusive public bar.  The sign outside Pepys Sandwich Bar, which used to be close to Sam's Chop House, read 'For Gentlemen Only' and the place only opened at dinner time.  Being in the financial centre it catered for the hard-working, hard-drinking City Gent and was standing room only for the sherry and Whitbread Tankard drinkers [1].  Derek Parr remembers Pepys having no seats, no tables, and no ladies (just one or two ladies behind the small bar).  There was a narrow shelf all round the wall on which which rest your drink.

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).

Oxford Road Station Bar, Oxford Road

Oxford Road Station, Oxford Road. (c) MEN.

In the '70s before the ugly new frontage was added in the 1990s, this British Rail bar was adjacent to the station entrance.  Situated in what is now just a shop, it offered ample seating in a semi-circular shape with views of platform 4 and beyond through large windows.  Worthington E and draught Guinness was available through "hole in the wall" taps for the thirsty traveller, as well a selection of cans [1].

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Butty Boat Bar, Mount Street

Midland Hotel, Peter Street. (c) earthinpictures.

This was the public bar of the Midland Hotel, entered either from within the hotel or by an outside entrance on Mount Street.  A loose canal connection was seen in the decor, with a few painted posts and teapots amongst the lounge style seats.  The 1975 guide mentions poor service and pricey beer with a bad selection of national keg brands, Worthington, Double Diamond, Youngers Tartan and Carling [1].  Its clientèle tended to be businessmen on expenses and couples.

Possible old entrance to Butty Boat Bar, Mount Street. (c) googlemaps.

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).

Trafalgar Buttery Bar, York Street

Trafalgar, York Street, 1990. (c) deltrems at flickr.

The Trafalgar was known as the Trafalgar Buttery Bar in the 1970s, was a small, quiet bar situated in the basement of the Trafalgar restaurant on York Street in the financial heart of town.  The decor was modern and tasteful with marble bar and high tables with stools around the walls; no fruit machines or jukebox either.  The Buttery Bar had pictures hung of a nautical theme - diving helmets, ships helms, etc.  Beer was reasonably priced with Tetleys, Double Diamond, Skol and Guinness on offer.  Amusingly, the 1975 pub guide compares the tasteful Traflagar with the garish Crown & Anchor on Hilton Street, which, 35 years on, is still moaned about by Manchester drinkers for its bizarre decor.  The Buttery Bar sounded like the place to go in the '70s for "the discerning drinker who wants a modern, pleasant place to sit, talk and drink without any distractions [1]."

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).

Piccadilly Hotel Plaza Bar, Piccadilly Plaza

Piccadilly Plaza Hotel. (c) Aidan O'Rourke.

Not really a place for the public these days, the bizarre looking Piccadilly Plaza hotel bar provided an expensive pint in comfortable surroundings for the public in the 1970s.  Piped music, air conditioning and the keg horror of Double Diamond and two strengths of Skol lager don't paint a positive picture.  Its main patrons were couples on an evening out in a posh setting (waiter service at weekends) [1].  Building of The Plaza was started in 1958 and was completed in 1965 and its renovation is detailed in this article by Manchester photographer Aidan O'Rourke [2].

1. The Manchester Pub Guide, Manchester & Salford City Centres (1975).

Gaiety Bar, Aytoun Street

The Grand, former Grand Hotel, Aytoun Street. (c) philipjames.

The Gaiety Bar was the non-residents lounge of the Grand Hotel on Aytoun Street.  The grandeur of the old imposing 1867 building stems from its rebuilding in 1883 as a hotel, whilst retaining its original warehouse exterior.  The decor of the Gaiety Bar gave it an old, worn theatre bar feel including a model stage fire curtain and footlights, with old poster advertisements, theatre notices and pictures [1].  Apparently, formal gentlemen would mix with informally-dressed ladies in the Gaeity Bar, where the pricey beer on offer was Wilsons Great Northern Bitter, Worthington 'E', Double Diamond and Carlsberg.  The hotel was converted into The Grand, a residential development, by Ian Simpson Architects in 1988 [2].

Grand Hotel signs, Gaiety Bar, Aytoun Street. (c) Manchester Pub Surveys [1].

1. The Manchester Pub Guide: Manchester & Salford City Centres, Manchester Pub Surveys (1975).  

Monday, 17 January 2011

Theatre Club, Kennedy Street

Kennedy Street (Theatre Club somewhere along on the left) (c) Dai O'Nysius at Panoramio.

On the same side of Kennedy Street as the trio of pubs, Waterhouse, City Arms and The Vine, about half way along, was the Theatre Club in the 1970s.  Ted remembers the Theatre Club opening late and also catering for drinkers when the pubs closed for the afternoon.  Stan Bowles, the maverick footballer was probably best known as a Queens Park Rangers player, but as most Mancunian football fans know, the lad from Collyhurst started his career at City.  Bowles was something of a regular at the Theatre Club, often using the club to play the fruit machines. 

Sunday, 16 January 2011

AG Club, Tib Street

Another old club discussed on the Man Mates forum by Angela and June, the AG Club on Tib Street was named after its owner, Arthur Griffiths [1].  Members all had their own keys to the AG Club in the 1970s when a fella called Stan ran it.  Its location has been confirmed as at the top end of Tib Street near Foundry Lane, on the right hand side going north.  Picture to follow.


Ponderosa Club / Express Club, Oldham Road

Another newspaper club like the mysterious Crusader Club, the Ponderosa apparently became the Express Club, named of course after the Express Building.  June at Man Mates remembers it being behind the Express Building, just off Oldham Road, run by the Mancini family, and confirms it became the Express Club [1].  'Tigger' remembers "narrow stairs leading to a narrowish club (front window used to overlook New Cross / Oldham Road).  From the top of the stairs, bar and seating areas to the right, dancefloor and stage to the left [2]."  Could the Ponderosa have been in this row of buildings, possibly the black door on the right?  This suggests the club might have previously been the O'Connells Arms - can anyone confirm this?

Possible location of Ponderosa Club / Express Club, Oldham Road. (c) googlemaps.


Crusader Club

Express Building, Great Ancoats Street. (c) Lost in Manchester.

The Crusader Club was a newspaper club somewhere near the Express Building when the northern edition of the Daily Express and other dailies were published in Manchester.  This great passage on the Gentlemen Ranters site talks of "the murky world of the Crusader Club.  Stairs as black as ink, rubbery swing doors... beer-stained table on the left... (I'm sleeping in my car at the back of the Cheshire Cheese)... the first edition has parked and there is a mass exodus of van men up the stairs.  The ground above us begins to vibrate as the trucks rattle into life... down here in The Crusader... it's our world beneath the gutter.  It's a funny world as we stay 'til thre, four, in the morning, every morning [1]."  Clearly a basement club, the Crusader may be been around the back of the Express Building, or perhaps down Luna Street or George Leigh Street.  Anyone shed any light on this one?


Thursday, 13 January 2011

House of Bamboo, Canal Street

Adverts for House of Bamboo, Canal Street, 21/4/1962 & 27/4/1962. (c) Manchester Beat.

These two small newspaper adverts for all-nighters in the House of Bamboo club on Canal Street in 1962 are the only evidence of this 1960s soul club, thanks to Manchester Beat [1].  This club would have been open when Canal Street was far from the bustling pedestrianised thoroughfare packed with gay bars - more like this as in 1963 looking down Canal Street towards Princess Street.


Astoria, Piccadilly

Former location of Astoria, Market Street. (c) Pimlico Badger at flickr.

On the corner of Tib Street and the Market Street / Piccadilly junction is this distinctive cast iron-framed building built by J. H. Lynde in 1879 which once housed commercial chambers as well as shops [1].  These days a boring Starbucks occupies the ground floor (and perhaps the first floor), but in the 1950s and '60s the second floor apparently housed the Astoria club [2].  Stairs and lift would take you up to the second floor although this photo from May 1959, when the ground floor was a 'John Collier' shop, doesn't indicate where the entrance was.

1. Manchester's Northern Quarter, English Heritage (2008).

Blackbird Café, Tib Street

The Blackbird Café is shown here in May 1959 on the east side of Tib Street off Market Street.  Its name doesn't suggest a public house but 'codger' at the Man Mates forum (a forum for Mancunians who remember Manchester in the 1950s, '60s and '70s) recalls the Blackbird Café at the back of Litttlewoods for a crafty drink on a Sunday afternoon.


Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Can Can / Red Bed / Kaleidoscope, Booth Street

Red Bed, Booth Street. (c) ManchesterBeat.

Can Can was a soul club, probably across the road from where the old, closed Lime bar is today.  Originally a coffee-only type place (so typical of many clubs in Manchester in the late '50s and '60s), it played host to many of the celebrated North Soul DJs that played the original Twisted Wheel.  It later became the Red Bed and then Kaleidoscope and was likely licensed by then.  It's claimed that the Can Can was the missing link between the Twisted Wheel and Wigan Casino in terms of Northern Soul history [1].


Albion Refreshment Rooms, London Road Station

Albion Refreshment Rooms, London Road Station. (c) Alan Godfrey Maps [1].

The Albion Refreshment Rooms was the original station pub at the old London Road Station back in the mid-1800s.  It occupied almost half of the station's front building, i.e. it would have occupied the left-hand side as you walked up the approach to the station [1].  It's not known whether the Albion Refreshment Rooms survived the 1880s enlargement of London Road Station, but what is a certainty is that it would have been a better bet for a pint before your journey than the dreadful Balcony Bar and soon-to-close Sports Bar which embarrass Manchester Piccadilly station today.

1. Manchester (London Road) 1849, Alan Godfrey Maps (2009).

Brannigans, Peter Street

Brannigans, Peter Street, 2006. (c) Faye Greenway at flickr.

News has just reached us that the venue known as Brannigans on Peter Street has closed as their parent company, Cougar Leisure Ltd., has gone into receivership [1].  Not to be confused with our other entry for the far superior lost venue Branagans in the Royal Exchange Arcade, this place will be lost to no-one except the scallies and chavs that blight our city's low-quality drinking areas.  Brannigans opened in the 1990s and at the time was part of the whole Peter Street revolution as the area sought to establish itself as the place to eat drink and be seen within the city centre.  Sadly for them (and their many chain-bar neighbours), it didn't really ever quite pan out this way, as first Castlefield and Deansgate Locks fought back,  Deansgate itself improved and finally the Northern Quarter really established itself as the place for the affluent 20- and 30-somethings looking for a night out.

Brannigans, inside. (c) manchestervipcard.

Whilst a bar during the day, it was more of a club type place at night, frequented generally by out-of-towners, confused foreign visitors and stag and hen nights.  Loud music, over-priced fizz, no real ale, and fights over scantily clad, rough women was the normal course of any night.  A large dancefloor in the middle and numerous poorly stocked bars surrounding it was the order of the day.  The closure of boring and badly-thought out chain bars like this are no loss to anyone if I'm honest, and it joins the growing list of rubbish chain bars that have failed along the cursed Peter Street-Quay Street length - Chicago Café, Squares, Teasers, Sports Bar, etc.  No doubt it'll end up as a Wetherspoons or something similar at some point when the recession stops biting.

Brannigans, Peter Street. (c) paranormaldatabase.

In its dying days Brannigans featured on low-brow TV's "Most Haunted" with her off Blue Peter and the former Liverpool footballer and all-round barmpot, Derek Acora.  They claimed that there is a restless spirit in the place that meddles behind the bar and tries to push staff down the stairs - are they sure that wasn't just just pissed up Irishman over for their once-a-year pilgrimage to Old Trafford?

Albert Hall, Peter Street. (c) Tony at MDMA.

There is some history about the place though; the Albert Hall in which the bar sits was built in 1910, ironically by the Manchester and Salford Wesleyan Mission, a temperance movement, and above Brannigans today is the huge space that was used as a Methodist church, as seen in this 1960s photo.  This one from 1960 shows the Albert Hall sign and the car showroom that used to be on the ground floor.

Albert Hall, Peter Street. (c) Faye Greenway at flickr.


Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Guest Pub - Broadway Inn, Ordsall

Broadway Inn. (c) John Bulmer at How to be a Retronaut

This fantastic photo by John Bulmer was featured on the the How to be a Retronaut site and also on the blog, Unpopular.  In Alistair's own words:

This shot from 1977 pictures an England from my own childhood.  Not that I grew up in an environment anything like the Manchester in the photograph, but still, it gives some context to times that we all too often allow to be cloaked in rose-tinted nostalgia.  I'm not sure that we were particularly aware of this kind of Britain in 1977, despite John Bulmer's work for the Sunday Times.  Perhaps I was just far too young to notice it of course, but nevertheless it remains true, surely, that this kind of reality is not one widely pedalled in the nostalgia business.  Even ‘Life On Mars’ and ‘Control struggled to truly capture this kind of strange wasteland.  What images will people look back on as capturing some essence of 2010?  And will those images evoke a world as alien as these two do?

Broadway Inn, Joseph Holts house. (c) John Bulmer at How to be a Retronaut

There is no other clue as to the Broadway Inn's location other than the clearances that are going on around it and the fact it's a Joseph Holt house.  I suspect that the Broadway Inn was in Orsdall, Salford, and in common with council policy, was originally spared demolition whilst the terraced houses around it were demolished in the '60s and '70s.  It didn't last that long though, as it appears that a new Broadway Inn was built in its place, on or near the site of the original, possibly as part of the redevelopment which would eventually become Salford Quays.  The fact that today's Broadway Inn is modern and a Holt's house is the only real evidence for this conclusion, so if anyone can clear this one up, please let us know.

Broadway Inn, Broadway, Ordsall. (c) Salford_66 at flickr.


The Broadway Inn was originally on the corner of Broadway and West Clowes Street having opened in 1878.  First licensee was Moses Bayley and the next few included Richard Gibson and William Whiteley.  It became a Holt's house in 1886 and the brewery extended it to include the house next door a couple of years later.  Seen below in the 1970s, the Clowes Hotel can been seen in the background on Trafford Road.

Broadway Inn, Broadway, Ordsall, 1970s. (c) Neil Richardson [1].

The tenant now was Harry Nichols who kept the Broadway Inn until the 1940s, followed by George Bramley and John Hayes in the '50s and Fred McCormick in the '60s.  The location on the corner of Broadway and West Clowes Street is confirmed in the below snap from the late Neil Richardson's book (pub number 163 being the Clowes Hotel, now gone).  As we suspected, all the terraced houses on Broadway were demolished in the 1970s and on 5th December 1980, Holt's opened the new Broadway Inn on the same site [1]

Former (and present) location of Broadway Inn, Broadway, Ordsall. (c) Neil Richardson [1].

1. Salford Pubs Part Two: Including Islington, Ordsall Lane and Ordsall, Oldfield road, Regent Road and Broughton, Neil Richardson (2003).

Le Roca, Lower Mosely Street

Le Roca, Lower Mosely Street. (c) ManchesterBeat.

Le Roca looks to have been a tiny basement club next door to the Concert Inn on Lower Mosely Street, opposite the Midland Hotel.  Pictured above in 1972, you can see it was part-gents hairstylists (not just any old barber's) hinting at the exclusive and trendy soul club it probably was (to feature on the Manchester Beat website it must have been).


Monday, 10 January 2011

Brazennose Club, Brazennose Street

Brazennose Street, 1961. (c)

The Brazennose Club was at 19 Brazennose Street way back when this pedestrianised and quiet little street off Albert Square was a bustling thoroughfare.  William Fisher (1831-1910) moved to Manchester from London and was manager or proprietor of several pubs in town, including the Brazennose Club from 1877-1881 [1].  Twenty-odd years earlier than William's time, the premises was John Barlow's joinery [2].  Today number 19 is Philpotts sandwich shop.  In the 1960s the famous Twisted Wheel club was across the road from the old Brazennose Club's location, and today the street is notable for Lincoln Square and its statues of  Princess Diana and of course Abraham Lincoln himself (roughly where the Brazennose Club would have been).

Brazennose Street, 1961. (c)

1. Personal communication, Gaynor Browne, William Fisher's great granddaughter-in-law.
2. Manchester City Centre 1849, Alan Godfrey Maps (2008).