Pubs of Manchester

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

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Old Admiral, Upper Duke Street

Old Admiral, Upper Duke Street, Hulme. (c) Bob Potts [1].

The Old Admiral was a Walkers of Warrington house that stood on Upper Duke Street, off Stretford Road in Hulme.  It had opened in 1869 [1] and closed in 1932 [2].  Upper Duke Street was the next street west of Upper Medlock Street, which still runs through Hulme today, and has been lost beneath the A5103 Princess Road.

1. The Old Pubs of Hulme Manchester (1) 1770-1930, Bob Potts (1983).
2. The Old Pubs of Hulme & Chorlton-on-Medlock, Bob Potts (1997).

Blue Bell, Mill Street

Blue Bell, Mill Street, Ancoats, 1950s. (c) Neil Richardson [1].

The Blue Bell stood on the corner of Carruthers Street and Mill Street and was a Wilsons house when it closed in 1959 [1].  These days a row of council houses ends at this spot at the corner of Carruthers Street and Old Mill Street.  When it opened in 1823 it as the Masonic Inn on Hallsworth Street as Mill Street was once known.  Six years later it was the Blue Bell and had a seven-barrel brewery a decade later [1].

1. The Old Pubs of Ancoats, Neil Richardson (1987).

187. Molly House, Richmond Street

Molly House, Richmond Street. (c) Molly House.

A welcome and much-needed addition to the Gay Village, the Molly House is a two floor pub with tea room on the first floor, a bordello (bar) and verandah (outdoor drinking area) on the second.  Whilst not alone with its gay-friendly camp decor, it is the only pub or bar in the area to offer decent cask ale.  Four or five handpumps offer a good selection of mainly local ales in dimpled pint pots.  We opted for a New Zealand-hopped pale ale and it was in good condition and priced reasonably at just under £3.  Details of the latest beers on at the Molly House are found on the beer and ales section of the website.  The Molly House clearly welcomes straight customers as well and we felt more at home in here than most of the pubs in the Village, bar the unisex toilets - call us old-fashioned. 

Molly House, Richmond Street. (c) Molly House.


Friday, 23 March 2012

Red Cow, Albion Street

Red Cow, Albion Street, Ordsall, Salford. (c) Salford Pubs of the 70s at flickr [1]. 

Salford's last beerhouse closing in August 1980, the Red Cow is shown here on Albion Street from Donkey Bridge, a vast footbridge which once spanned the Windsor Bridge Cattle Station spur all the way to West Hope Street, Ordsall.  The Red Cow was once a simple corner shop on the corner of Harrogate Street and Albion Street but crucially it was owned by Boddington's.  When the  Freemasons Arms on Spaw Street off Chapel Street and New Bailey Street closed, the brewery transferred its licence to their shop and the Red Cow beerhouse was born.

Red Cow, Albion Street, Ordsall. (c) Salford Pubs of the 70s at flickr [1]. 

The origins of the name, the Red Cow, may be revealed in the forthcoming book about Buffalo Bill's visit to Salford in 1888 by Tom Cunningham - more on that when it's published.  In the 1960s and '70s most of Salford and Manchester's remaining beerhouses were granted full licences, but oddly the Red Cow was an exception and continued to only sell beer - maybe just ale and stout... The Red Cow is pictured in 1980 just before it closed with landlady Lillian Wood and her loyal regulars.

Red Cow, Albion Street, 1980. (C) Kevin Cummins.

The Red Cow was demolished quite soon after it was closed and the building of Albion Way saw Albion Street being lost to the redevelopment.  The old Ripley Street maisonettes shown behind the pub have been remodelled into the Trenham Place houses.  The old location of the Red Cow is roughly in the middle of the south-bound lane of Albion Way where it says A5063 on the map.

Red Cow, Albion Street. (c) Salford Pubs of the 70s at flickr [1]. 

The Red Cow was immortalised on film when it acted as the backdrop to a row between Ray and a young Deirdre in a 1970s episode of Coronation Street.  These stills from the video show the Red Cow receiving deliveries of beer barrels from a Boddington's van - staged or not, this is fantastic scene courtesy of the Granada archives.

Red Cow, Albion Street. (c) Coronationstreettube [3].

Red Cow, Albion Street. (c) Coronationstreettube [3].

2. Salford Pubs - Part Three: Including Cross Lane, Broad Street, Hanky Park, the Height, Brindleheath, Charlestown and Weaste, Neil Richardson (2003).

Spread Eagle, Rochdale Road

The Spead Eagle is pictured below with the 1947 Whit Walk parading past the pub on the corner of Limer Street and Rochdale Road in Collyhurst.  The pub is shown at the Archives as a Cornbrook Ales house in 1958 then in 1971 as a Bass Charrington house complete with delivery lorry outside on Limer Street.

Spread Eagle, Rochdale Road, Collyhurst, 1947. (c) Bob Potts [1].

The Spread Eagle closed a couple of years later in 1973 due a compulsory purchase order having been licensed since 1828.  The pub had a short period as the Yorkshire House around 1838 and in the 19th century there was a brewhouse attached [1].  Limer Street is long-lost to new developments off the west side of Rochdale Road, but the old street's little community is shown celebrating the Queen's Coronation in 1953 [2].

Limer Street, Collyhurst, 1953. (c) Northwards Housing.

1. The Old Pubs of Rochdale Road and Neighbourhood Manchester, Bob Potts (1985).

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Smith's Arms, Sherratt Steet

Smith's Arms, Sherratt Street, Ancoats, 2009. (c) Mace at flickr.

The Smith's Arms is still standing on Sherratt Street (formerly Spittal Street) in old Ancoats, standing as a defiant relic while old industrial buildings are razed, replaced by the occasional new-build.  It was also known as the Blacksmiths Arms and the Hammer in Hand in the 18th century when it was a Taylors Eagle house, then Tetley's [1], and finally a Burtonwood house upon closure at some point in the 1990s [2].

Smith's Arms, Sherratt Street, Ancoats, 2008. (c) Iain Peacock at flickr.

The Hammer, as it was known locally and signed on the pub, is shown here at the archives in the times when it was hemmed in by the factories and dwellings in the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution.  The Smith's Arms dates as far back as 1775 when it was built as a three-storey middle class residence, and industrialisation led to its conversion to a public house in 1827 [1,2].

Smith's Arms, Sherratt Street, Ancoats, 2009. (c) Mace at flickr. 

Much more information can be found in the 2007 Smith's Arms Archaeological Building Survey by Ivan Hradil, Peter Arrowsmith and Michael Nevell at Manchester University, which can be downloaded from this link at HistoryME [2].  It contains many interior photos of the pub which show the inside in good condition, even if it doesn't look very pub-like any more. 

Smiths Arms Burtonwood sign. (c) Smith's Arms Archaeological Building Survey [2].

There is an ongoing effort to get the Smith's Arms on the List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest by English Heritage - see the link at HistoryME.  Whilst a noble effort, I won't hold out much hope of this being successful, as pubs are simply not held in high regards by the authorities and many historians, despite them playing such a significant role in our social history.

Smith's Arms, Sherratt Street, Ancoats, 1986. (c) Neil Richardson [1].

1. The Old Pubs of Ancoats, Neil Richardson (1987).
2. Smith's Arms Archaeological Building Survey, Ivan Hradil, Peter Arrowsmith and Michael Nevell (2007) (link).

Bridge, Strawberry Road

Bridge, Strawberry Road, Salford. (c) Salford Pubs of the 70s at flickr [1].

On the corner of Strawberry Bank and Strawberry Road, just off Broad Street near the closed Woolpack, the Bridge Inn opened in the 1860s and closed in 1996.  The pub was enlarged in the 1870s when it took over the house next door to make a new tap room and living room, before it became a Wilsons house.  The now extinct Newton Heath brewer had the Bridge until 1989 when a pub company took it over for its final 7 years [2].

Bridge, Strawberry Road, Salford. (c) Salford Pubs of the 70s at flickr [1]. 

As shown on Google Maps, today the Bridge is still standing but as a distinctive, whitewashed building which may have had recent use as the clubhouse of a motorcycle group.  There is still a reminder of the Bridge though, as the old sign peeks out from behind the black boards, albeit unintentionally.  In the past, Strawberry Bank used to run under the railway line and meet up with Cheltenham Street, hence 'The Bridge'.

Former Bridge, Strawberry Road, Salford. (c) Google 2012. View Larger Map.

2. Salford Pubs - Part Three: Including Cross Lane, Broad Street, Hanky Park, the Height, Brindleheath, Charlestown and Weaste, Neil Richardson (2003).

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]. 

Nelson Inn, Upper Jackson Street

Nelson Inn, Upper Jackson Street, Hulme, 1960s. (c) Bob Potts [1].

This Chesters house opened in 1859 [2] and lasted over a hundred years until it was demolished in 1970 [1] as pat of the Hulme regeneration efforts of the time.  Bizarrely, as the Nelson Inn was being knocked down, the oddball city planners had commissioned a new pub to open next door, the infamous estate pub, the  Sir Henry Royce.  The newly-erected grim Hulme Crescents can be seen behind the old and new pubs on the newly-christened Chichester Road.

Nelson Inn, Upper Jackson Street, Hulme, 1970. (c) Jonnyboy Smith at Facebook.

1. The Old Pubs of Hulme & Chorlton-on-Medlock, Bob Potts (1997).
2. The Old Pubs of Hulme Manchester (1) 1770-1930, Bob Potts (1983).

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Bridge & Crescent, Mount Street

Bridge & Crescent Inn, Mount Street, Chorlton-on-Medlock. (c) Bob Potts (1997) [1].

Mount Street off Upper Brook Street in the northern part of Chorlton-on-Medlock has been lost to the A57 Mancunian Way and with it went the Bridge & Crescent Inn.  This Wilsons house closed in 1962 as the area was razed for Manchester's inner-ring road 'motorway' [1].  

Bridge & Crescent Inn, Mount Street, Chorlton-on-Medlock. (c) John Smith at Facebook.

The Bridge & Crescent was so-named as it sat above the curve of the River Medlock, hence on the bridge.  The Crescent piece is because the part of Mount Street that bent slightly due to the river's curve was known as 'the Crescent', as shown on the 1824 map of Chorlton Row (as this Chorlton was once known).

'The Crescent' on Mount Street, Chorlton Row, 1824. (c) Bob Potts (1997) [1].

1. The Old Pubs of Hulme & Chorlton -on-Medlock, Bob Potts (1997).

Hyde Park Corner, Silk Street

Hyde Park Corner, Silk Street, Salford, 1930s. (c) Nil Richardson [1].

The Hyde Park Corner on Silk Street was demolished in the 1990s, but Joseph Holt's soon rebuilt it and reopened their new estate pub in April 1992, which continues today as one of old Salford's few survivors.  The original beerhouse opened in the 1840s and in the 1880s, the Hyde Park Corner Inn was bought by Fulford & Company Brewers of Hulme, then Empress Brewery, who added the cement rendering that lasted until the end.  It passed to Walkers of Warrington and although it survived the St Matthias clearance scheme in 1956, the demolition of the Silk Street flats saw the Hyde Park Corner close as a Tetley's house in the early '80s.

Hyde Park Corner, Silk Street, Salford, 1986. (c) Salford Pubs of the 70s at flickr [2]. 

1. Salford Pubs Part One: The Old Town, including Chapel Street, Greengate and the Adelphi, Neil Richardson (2003).

Friday, 16 March 2012

All Saints Tavern, York Street

All Saints Tavern, York Street, Chorlton-on-Medlock. (c) Jonnyboy Smith at Facebook.

The All Saints Tavern was a Cornbrook Ales beerhouse that straddled Berwick Street and Hill Street on York Street, just off Grosvenor Street / Oxford Road.  It lasted until 1971, a few years longer than it's near-neighbours, the Wellington and the Galloway Arms [1].

1. The Old Pubs of Hulme & Chorlton-on-Medlock, Bob Potts (1977).

Devonshire, Stockport Road

Devonshire, Stockport Road, Ardwick. (c) Eddie Sinclair at Facebook

Shown as a Wilsons house twice in 1970 and 1971 after a lick of paint, the Devonshire was a grand hotel on the corner of Devonshire Street and Stockport Road in Ardwick.  In the past it was also known as Tommy Brown's Music Hall [1], a Threlfall's house, and the Devonshire was called The Circus for a time before its demolition.

Devonshire, Stockport Road. (c) with kind permission.

An evocative shot of the inside of the Devonshire, kindly supplied by Anne O'Keefe, shows it was a big and busy old pub.  The Devonshire was sadly knocked down at some point in the 1990s and has, rather ignominiously, been replaced with a McDonald's.

Former location of the Devonshire, Stockport Road. (c) Eddie Sinclair at Facebook.  


Blue Bell, Reather Street

Blue Bell, Reather Street, Collyhurst, 1929. (c) Bob Potts [1].

The Blue Bell stood from 1836 to 1963 before it was lost to development.  It was on Reather Street which used to run from Rochdale Road towards Oldham Road in Collyhurst, and it is all-but-lost except for the short Reather Walk today.  The Blue Bell was an Empress Brewery, Walkers of Warrington and then Tetley's house before the compulsory purchase order for development came [1].

1. The Old Pubs of Rochdale Road and neighbourhood Manchester, Bob Potts [1985].

Cheetwood, Derby Street

Cheetwood Hotel, Derby Street, Cheetwood, 1988. (c) Alan Winfield with kind permission.

The Cheetwood Hotel was an old Joseph Holt's house on Derby Street in an industrialised part of Cheetwood off Cheetham Hill Road.  It's pictured in 1969 and although it's not clear when this fine-looking pub was lost, it probably lasted into the 1990s as it's shown above and mentioned in a 1988 article [1]. 

Cheetwood Hotel, Derby Street, Cheetwood. (c) London Gazette [1].

The pub is also listed as the Cheetwood Arms in the 1989 CAMRA guide [2].  From the photo above, it's it's possible to work out exactly that the Cheetwood used to stand on the corner of Cheetwood Street and Derby Street (in the news this year, labelled by the Town Hall as Manchester's dirtiest street [3]).

Former location of Cheetwood, Derby Street. (c) Google 2012. View Larger Map.

2. Ale of Two Cities, Real Ale & Real Pubs in Manchester and Salford, CAMRA (1989).

Folkestone Hotel, Folkestone Road

Folkestone Hotel, Folkestone Road, Clayton. (c) D.N. at ManMates Facebook [1].

The Folkestone Hotel was a Boddington's pub that lasted into the 1990s, on Folkestone Road in Clayton.  The grand pub is shown here in 1963.  Judging from the postbox seen above and in 1963 and the one that remains today, it's clear that the Folkestone Hotel was at the top western end of Folkestone Road as shown below.

Former location of Folkestone Hotel, Folkestone Road. (c) Google 2012. View Larger Map.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Rovers Return / Park Inn, Tatton Street

Rovers Return, Tatton Street, Ordsall. (c) Salford Pubs of the 70s at flickr [1].

The Rovers Return on the corner of Gloucester Street and Tatton Street closed on 27th February 1971 but it had only been fully licensed for a few years.  Before then it had been known as the Engine Drivers Arms in 1867 then the Park Inn beerhouse about a decade later, named after Ordsall Park nearby which opened in 1879.  Groves & Whitnall took the Park Inn and altered the boozer so that customers didn't have to leave through the front door and go around the corner for a leak.  A more significant improvement took place in the 1960s when the newly fully-licensed pub incorporated the café next door.  The tiny lobby, vault and smoke room was knocked through into a large lounge and vault [2] and - presumably in homage to the TV version - the pub was renamed the Rovers Return for its last few years.  Today Tatton Street only runs through a small part of redeveloped Ordsall, but Gloucester Street still remains and this house marks the spot of the old Park Inn / Rovers Return.
2. Salford Pubs Part Two: Including Islington, Ordsall Lane and Ordsall, Oldfield Road, Regent Road and Broughton.

Upton Hotel, Upton Street

Upton Hotel, Upton Street, Ardwick, 1930s. (c) Bot Potts [1].

The Upton Hotel, a Threlfalls house, was situated on the corner of Mornington Street and Upon Street just off Stockport Road near Ardwick Green.  Shown above in the 1930s with a ghostly faced peering out of the window, by 1970, the year it closed, it was looking rather sorry for itself with the very same windows put through.

1. The Old Pubs of Hulme & Chorlton-on-Medlock, Bob Potts (1997).

Rose & Crown, Clarendon Street

Rose & Crown, Clarendon Street, Hulme, 1912. (c) Bob Potts [1].

Shown 100 years ago in Bob Potts' first book (above [1]), the Rose & Crown was a Walker's of Warrington & Burton Ales house on the corner of Wilmott Street and Clarendon Street.  This quite distinctive boozer was established in 1867 [2] and closed in 1934 [1], and is pictured at the archives in 1933.  Today the meeting of Wilmott Street and Clarendon Street - and the Rose & Crown - is directly beneath the Mancunian Way.

1. The Old Pubs of Hulme & Chorlton-on-Medlock, Bob Potts (1997).
2. The Old Pubs of Hulme Manchester (1) 1770-1930, Bob Potts (1983).

Monday, 12 March 2012

Apollo, Heywood Street

Former Apollo, Heywood Street, Cheetham Hill. (c) Google 2012. View Larger Map.

The Apollo was a Joseph Holt's estate pub of Cheetham Hill at 79 Heywood Street on the corner with Brinsworth Drive.  This is not far from the Waterloo on Waterloo Road, which has recently reopened we're glad to hear (info from @MCRTaxiTours).  Sadly, the Apollo has been closed for many years and has been put to other use.

Former Apollo, Heywood Street, Cheetham Hill. (c) Google 2012. View Larger Map.

At least the Apollo is some sort of community facilty, even if it is as the strictly booze-free Al-Falah Islamic Centre.  These gents appear to be loitering outside waiting for it to open... much the same way as the old  Holt's drinkers of Cheetham Hill would have done when it was the Apollo.

Former Apollo, Heywood Street, Cheetham Hill. (c) Google 2012. View Larger Map.

Olive Branch, Whitley Street

Olive Branch, Whitley Street, Collyhurst, around 1900. (c) With kind permission from Julia Gill, Ontario, Canada.

The Olive Branch was at No.63 Whitley Street in Collyhurst, which still runs through this inner city part of north-east Manchester today as Whitley Road, near the surviving Swan Inn.  It was a Walkers & Homfray house existing from 1862 to 1919 [1], and according to Julia Gill, who sent in the above photo taken over 100 years ago, the Olive Branch was probably run by Edward Johnson and family around that time.

1. The Old Pubs of Rochdale Road and Neighbourhood, Manchester, Bob Potts (1985).

Sunday, 11 March 2012

186. Wheatsheaf, Oldham Road

Wheatsheaf, Oldham Road, Ancoats. (c) Google 2012. View Larger Map.

Despite being only a couple of hundred yards from the trendy Northern Quarter, and even closer to the popular beer havens of the Marble Arch and Angel, the Wheatsheaf is a forgotten little local's pub on the Ancoats / Miles Platting border.  It's been on our radar for years so it was after our tour of Miles Platting that we called in finally.

Wheatsheaf, Oldham Road, Ancoats. (c) Pubs of Manchester.

It looks closed half the time, and its location, nestled in the shadow of a derelict high-rise at the end of a dilapidated row of shops, means it's not the most inviting looking pub in town.  Don't judge a book by it's cover though, as inside it's very pleasant - bare boards and traditional bench seating in the vault with a fine old stone floor and cosy lounge.

Wheatsheaf, Oldham Road, Ancoats. (c) Manchester History [1].

The beer wasn't great though - Boddies or Stones smooth were purchased, both as tasteless as they were inoffensive.  It's an improvement on the alleged cans-only situation that our mate reckoned that was the Wheatsheaf last year.  For a Saturday dinner time there was a few in - several pub shaman, a couple of young scallies and a lone female drinker.  Another Manchester throwback.

Wheatsheaf, Oldham Road, Ancoats. (c) Pubs of Manchester.

Update: Sadly the Wheatsheaf is no more, and in late 2012 or early 2013 it was stealthily converted into a convenience store.  RIP - we will cover its history in more detail soon.

Wheatsheaf, Oldham Road. (c) Neil Richardson [2].

Wheatsheaf, Oldham Road. (c) Manchester Pub Surveys [3].

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