Pubs of Manchester

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

Monday, 22 August 2011

Empress, Cheetham Hill Road

Empress, Cheetham Hill Road. (c) googlemaps.

The Empress is a nicely preserved old pub a few yards up Cheetham Hill Road from the Griffin.  Manchester author, historian and pub sign expert, Arthur Chappell, describes how "Queen Victoria, head of the British Empire in its heyday, survives over what is now a furniture shop. An Empress without an Empire [1]."

Empress, Cheetham Hill Road. (c) Arthur Chappell at socyberty.

"Her sign carries an air of sadness and lament for a by-gone golden age when Britain ruled the waves before the counties under her control flexed their muscles and fought for their right to independence.  Queen Victoria, Empress of nothing.  Here  she is at her least amused, looking very sorry for herself, at the height of mourning for her love, Prince Albert.  That the pub named in her honour has gone adds to the aura of sadness around this sign, but it is fantastic to see a sign survive so long after the pub has gone."

Empress, Cheetham Hill Road. (c) gogglemaps.

Even the Empress's sign on the side of the pub has been well-preserved.  Whether the pub gave name to the street, or vice-versa, is unknown.  Read more of Arthur Chappell's Pub Sign Essays which are all based on Manchester boozers.

Empress, Cheetham Hill Road. (c) gogglemaps.


1 comment:

  1. I lived in this pub in the 70s, it was called the bird in hand 1st as can be seen in the figures between the windows and changed name when the then empress of india passed the premises before becoming queen.