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Natalie Bradbury

‘Loop lines’ are cycle ways and footpaths created on former railway lines which were closed following the infamous Beeching Report of 1963. In Greater Manchester, a number of loop lines provide miles of traffic-free routes for urban cyclists. The best-known, the well-used Fallowfield Loop, offers a commuter route between south and east Manchester. Others include the Roe Green Loop Line, in suburban Salford, and the Middlewood Way, which runs into rural Cheshire from the outskirts of Stockport. As well as providing off-road routes and acting as green spaces, this chapter argues that they provide important spaces for learning, sharing and socialising.

in Manchester
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Natalie Bradbury

The modern-day co-operative movement was founded by a group of workers as a grocery shop in Toad Lane, Rochdale in 1844. This led to the formation of the Co-operative Wholesale Society (CWS), forerunner of today’s Co-operative Group, which is still trading from its headquarters in Manchester. This chapter explores the growth and development of the movement through Manchester’s Co-operative Quarter, showing how the organisation commissioned new buildings as it expanded, and embraced new architectural styles – from art deco to international-style modernism. Now rebranded as a retail and leisure district known as NOMA, many of these landmark buildings are finding new uses.

in Manchester
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Natalie Bradbury

This chapter traces Greater Manchester’s long association with media production, from the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, when the city was known as the ‘Fleet Street of the North’, to the BBC’s MediaCity development at Salford Quays. As well as discussing the production of national and regional publications in the city, it highlights Manchester’s history of alternative publications, including socialist newspapers such as The Clarion and special-interest publications associated with the co-operative movement. Exploring buildings such as the Daily Express building and the Printworks complex, it shows how former press buildings have been adapted for new purposes ranging from city-centre living to entertainment.

in Manchester
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Natalie Bradbury

Works of art by internationally significant artists can be seen freely and accessibly in Greater Manchester, without even having to step foot inside an art gallery or museum. Visiting key works by artists including the British sculptors Elisabeth Frink and Gertrude Hermes, and the conceptual artists Gustav Metzger and Ryan Gander, this chapter explores the history of public art commissioning in Greater Manchester. It discusses a variety of aims of placing artworks in public places – from public parks to Manchester Airport – showing how these range from decoration and celebration, to interaction and participation, to placemaking and tourism.

in Manchester
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Natalie Bradbury

This chapter explores public statuary in Greater Manchester, highlighting changing ideas about the types of figures who should be commemorated and the forms this might take. Starting with traditional statues of royalty and political grandees, it then explores attempts to make statues more relatable and relevant. These include crowdfunded statues of popular entertainment figures (including the comedians Frank Sidebottom and Victoria Wood) and a new statue of Emmeline Pankhurst, which was chosen following a public vote. It highlights work by artists and activists to address the historic gender imbalance in those the city has chosen to commemorate.

in Manchester