Pubs of Manchester

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

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Manchester Cavern / Jigsaw / Magic Village, Cromford Court

Manchester Cavern, Cromford Court. (c) Manchester Beat [1].

Described as the city's best psychedelic and rhythm & blues venue, the Magic Village was started by Roger Eagle of Twisted Wheel fame.  It had previously The Cavern and the Jigsaw Club and was situated on Cromford Court which is now lost beneath the Arndale monstrosity.  Pink Floyd played there in '68, so did The Beatles, The Who, Rod Stewart, The Kinks and the Pretty Things when Jagger and Richards joined then on stage [1]. 

Magic Village, Cromford Court. (c) Maggie Backhouse at Manchester Beat [2].

All-nighters were common at the Magic Village, and although unlicensed, I'm sure there was plenty of other means of intoxication available in there.  Manchester's unlicensed clubs and coffee shops (e.g. the Can Can / Red Bed / Kaleidoscope) played an important yet unheralded part in the musical and social fabric of the city in the '50s and '60s, so many will be featured here.

Magic Village, Cromford Court. (c) Maggie Backhouse at Manchester Beat [2].

Although Cromford Court was a victim of the bulldozer, as the heart of old Manchester was ripped out for the Arndale Centre, the name lived on in the name of the Cromford Courts flats that were quirkily built on top of the shopping centre.  Many Mancunians were unaware of these council houses in the sky and although they survived the 1996 IRA blast, they were deemed unfit for habitation in about 2002 and the last of the residents moved out.  Read much more at the essential Mancky [3]. 

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