Saturday, 31 December 2016

Weekend Reflections: En route from Middlewich


A frosty wander en route from Middlewich in Cheshire. Winter bites... and gives a slightly abstract Weekend Reflection.



Friday, 30 December 2016

Skywatch: Old Father Time...


This does seem an appropriate time of year to show the weather vane gracing the roof of a retired people's home in Altrincham. Skywatch. Father Time has lost the race on 2016 and is heading off into history. Mother Earth clearly has more staying power, despite humanity's destructive efforts.

People just age and die. In this social media age we have the ability to share and discuss more widely. There are thousands of western entertainment and sports stars, creatives and scientists, business people or others in the public eye who are well known and will touch a shared nerve when they pass. There have been a lot in 2016 but I'm sure there will be many more in 2017, 18 and onwards. Some through old age some throiugh susbtsamce abuse and its consequences,

More worrying to me are the 4900 migrants who drowned in the Mediterranean Sea this year and the thousands of homeless people in the UK and western world, too many of whom die through no fault of their own.
 What can you do? Protest, get politically active or at least socially responsible and do more volumtary/community work in whatever field drives you. Switch of the TV and help people and animals... See you on the streets, at the soup kitchen, at the People's Assembly against Austerity etc.








Thursday, 29 December 2016

Spot the dog?



At Rivington the other weekend. The caption of 'Spot the dog' is with thanks to Nev :-)




Wednesday, 28 December 2016

ABC Wednesday: "Y" is for Paul Young #MikeandTheMechanics #SadCafe


ABC Wednesday ends the year on a why, or more accurately, a "Y". Sad Café were a Manchester band from the 1970s to the 1990s. Their co-founder and vocalist Paul Young lived here on Hale Road until he died in 2000. He was also a singer in Mike and the Mechanics.



Tuesday, 27 December 2016

Deli Lama Cafe


The wonderfully named Deli-Lama Cafe on Chapel Street, always a great spot to chill, work or enjoy the food and drink. This December, it's often been warm enough to sit outside. However, today there was a frost in the suburbs and it was icy cold when I arrived back in the (mostly deserted) city centre at 8.15 a.m.









Monday, 26 December 2016

Monday Mural: Hammo's yule log offering @yohammohammo


Oh Yule log of 2016, keep burning away on Tib Street, by Manchester artist Hammo.
The final round of Monday Murals for another year.







Sunday, 25 December 2016

Christmas in the library


Shakespeare in the stained glass casts an eye over the pagan tree.

Like most of us hard working souls, Manchester Central Library gets a rare day off today... A thank you to all the library staff for all the poetry readings and other events, the internet use, the hours browsing and reading that I've enjoyed here in 2016.  

Merry Christmas - may it be peaceful and may all the wealth flow from the undeserving to those that are in need.


Saturday, 24 December 2016

Weekend Reflections: a home is where the hearth is


A festive abstract offering for Weekend Reflections


A home can also be where the external pink lights reflect in an icy puddle while the Christmas candelabra dances on the window sill in the night light... 









Friday, 23 December 2016

Skywatch Friday: Winter Hill


One for Skywatch Friday. Winter Hill was trying its darndest to live up to its name a few weekends ago. For information on the TV transmitter tower, I hand you over to my good friends at Wikipedia :-)

"It is one of the tallest structures in the UK, the tallest being the mast at Belmont with a height of 351.5 metres (1,153 ft); however, at 778.1 metres (2,553 ft) above sea level, Winter Hill has the highest television transmitting antenna in the United Kingdom and is higher than Gragareth, the highest hill in Lancashire."



Thursday, 22 December 2016

Low noon on King Street West


I took a lunch break on Tuesday, enjoying the sunshine and the last day of the Christmas Markets in the city centre. This bright sight greeted me on the way.
Shoot into the sun sometimes, it's worth it!


Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Go and see @thexmastruce at @53two #CityDailyPhoto


Last night we ventured deep into and under Manchester's cavernous railway arches on Albion Street A former car showroom has been taken over by a theatre and arts group, Manchester Actors' Platform, aka 53Two. It's an atmospheric space,  retaining parts of its history- the copper on the walls, the ancient brickwork, barrelled ceilings.
Interspersed there are vintage chairs and even an old wireless, plus bar. 

I recommend you go and see this great performance of The Christmas Truce, an adaptation of Carol Ann Duffy's poem. This four-hander evoked the ghosts and insanity of Christmases past, from a viewpoint of the 1950s in Salford (as austere for many as the 2010s are) looking back to the trenches.  A place where entrenched people didn't want to fight but the generals enforced it, upon pain of firing squad. 



Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Misplaced hat #citydailyphoto


The morning after the night before outside the Garratt pub on Princess Street... It used to be called The Old Garratt- an interesting 2010 post from the Manchester Pubs blog about it is here.

It's been a long time but I'm linking with Ruby Tuesday Too.




Sunday, 18 December 2016

Christmas in Lark Hill Place @SalfordMuseum


Greater Manchester is blessed with wondrous museums and galleries. I enjoyed visiting some this year in Rochdale, Bolton, Bury and Stockport, as well as the usual selection in Manchester City Centre. But my current favourite is Salford Museum and Art Gallery.

The piece de resistance is undoubtedly the reconstructed 19th Century Salfordian street, Lark Hill Place. Fascinating at any time of year, it was magical last Wednesday after work. A musician played, as visitors explored each house and business in the street- decorated for Christmas. I enjoyed the best mulled wine of my life as I took it all in. I even bought a Christmas present or two. Enjoy...
















Saturday, 17 December 2016

Weekend Reflection: No go for Dough = now go for Dough @DoughMcr


Dough restaurant on High Street in the Northern Quarter is reflected in Bluu Bar opposite. Poor old Dough was closed since the September flood-but reopened this week :-) 
It's veggie and vegan friendly too. Weekend Reflections.


Image may contain: food and indoor


Friday, 16 December 2016

Skywatch Friday: Levy light


The morning light over Levenshulme, taken from the train on Monday morning, in order to share on this  Skywatch Friday.





Thursday, 15 December 2016

Festive at the Fringe


We popped into Fringe Bar, opposite Band On The Wall in the Northern Quarter, last week. "A nice little boozer", as they say. I had an intriguing half of a ginger-infused pale ale. That, and the plum pudding beer at Gullivers on Oldham Street have kickctarted the drinking side to the festive season for me (along with mulled wine at the People's Assembly Against Austerity Xmas do on Tuesday).




Tuesday, 13 December 2016

#Henna by Holly #Manchester #CityDailyPhoto



In Manchester until January - contact Holly for some party season henna! 
Professional and great value for money. She's on Instagram and Facebook 
or send an e-mail to hollysb12@hotmail.com





Monday, 12 December 2016

Monday Mural: Grosvenor Picture Palace




This former cinema has been a pub for as long as I can remember. It now has some nice hand drawn Christmas murals on their windows. It used to be called the Flea and Firkin but is now the Footage. It was originally the Grosvenor Picture Palace and first opened in 1913.

Sunday, 11 December 2016

#MakeMerry @FredAldous #CityDailyPhoto #WeekendReflections


It's the time of year to admire the festive window display at Fred Aldous on Stevenson Square. Two floors of wonderful art and craft making material and a lot more besides. It's always worth a visit any time of the year. They've been going strong since the nineteenth century and long may they continue.

Taking part with other bloggers across the world at Weekend Reflections.



Saturday, 10 December 2016

#Crueltyfree #vegan #Christmas fair at Cross Street Chapel #citydailyphoto


There is a great vegan Christmas fair at Cross Street Chapel M2, in Manchester CIty Centre today, next Friday 16th and Saturday 17th December. It runs from 11.00 am to 8.00 pm. 

Food and gifts such as books, jewellery, cosmetics, booze, craft, loose leaf teas, tote bags. Also some anti-cruelty campaigning groups. Pop in and buy something (entrance £1). 
I was there yesterday and recommend the lovely hot pot and dumplings, pictured above and the bookstore run by my new friend, Tony Tofu.




Friday, 9 December 2016

#SkywatchFriday : Will you find a neater street than Anita Street?


Symmetry, apart from the last of the leaves, can be found on Anita Street in Ancoats.
One for Skywatch Friday

I noticed this week that it's at the start of a current TV ad for Covonia cough syrup, complete with fake bus stop. the rest of the ad was filmed in Ancoats and Northern Quarter it seems.



Thursday, 8 December 2016

The Met on Hilton Street #CityDailyPhoto #autumn


The last of the autumn leaves cling on outside The Met on Hilton Street. This 1930s building is one of my favourite apartment blocks in the city, as I may have said 5 years ago, back in 2011!





Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Winter Gathering on London Road #icerink #Manchester #CityDailyPhoto


Great to see the London Road Fire Station in use for some Christmas food, drink and an ice rink too. Yup, it's time for my annual Manchester ice rink photo!








Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Under standing Santa


Over the years I've shown you the Albert Square Santa Claus, a.k.a Zippy, from every angle: above, front and sides. Even in bits and pieces and reflectedThis year I thought I'd go undercover for you in order to find a new take on a familiar theme :-)

Ok, I know he's sitting and not standing but I was lured by the pun in my title...

Taking part in Our World Tuesday.










Monday, 5 December 2016

#MondayMural: #Shaft by day and night #blaxploitation



This week's Monday Mural is of the John Shaft character from the 1971 film Shaft, currently on display on Tib Street. I'm unsure of who the artist is?

I should really watch see this American blaxploitation film at some point. I remember being impressed by the Isaac Hayes soundtrack when I heard it eons ago but t5hat was before I realised the film was exploitative.




Sunday, 4 December 2016

Frost fair... unfair #CityDailyPhoto


The Frost Fair at Whitworth Art Gallery is on today (and yesterday). A nice, if small, collection of local craft makers and street food. Here's a section, it looked rather wintry in the park yesterday. Brass band and kids crafts inside as well. 

Meanwhile, the Spinningfields craft market is on today. I'm heading there just as soon as I've done some admin and baked a loaf of bread. 

After last night helping the homeless I have plenty of emergency foil blankets to give the dozens of frost-enduring homeless people in doorways and street corners on city streets along the way... It's a shameless society that we live in.





Saturday, 3 December 2016

Bejouled slipper


Mancunian John Prescott Joule sits, looking bored, in the Town Hall. I've always liked the way the marble slipper looks like it's about to slip off with a quick flick of his toes.




Friday, 2 December 2016

Pi eyed in Alty



Altrincham has improved a lot around the old market place. I was there on Sunday and there were two new places we'll have to explore more fully: Portas tapas bar and The Con Club. 

I was also back there on Tuesday night for a drink at Pi (above) on another side of the square. Nice to see the busy bees of Manchester's famous Boddingtons Brewery on the wall.





Thursday, 1 December 2016

#CityDailyPhoto #December Theme Day: Transitions


Transitions is the City Daily Photo Theme Day this month, which could actually apply to my blog. 

I am in the process of moving from marvellous Manchester to hipsterville Hastings on the south coast. I'll be back in Manchester at least a week a month though, even once I've gone! It'll be a couple of months yet. I'll start a new City Daily Photo blog from the south coast but will maybe post the occasional thing to Mancunian Wave as well. 

Here we have Manchester Cathedral and a Christmas fun fair and, on the right, Hastings Pier... Maybe it's also the ghosts of my 31 Christmasses past and present and the ghost of Christmasses future?..

Thanks to Tanya of Around Roanoke .. A Daily Photo Blogfor this month's theme.







Wednesday, 30 November 2016

A bar where everybody knows your name?... #Manchester #pubs #TheBullsHead #Cheers


There's been a pub on this site since 1786. The Bull's Head near Piccadilly Station used to be a local haunt of mine and I featured it when "...and if a double decker bus crashes into us..." (to quote The Smiths), back on Friday 13th January 2013. 

I was in there with a good friend last week and noticed the endearing slogan while she was at the bar.









Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Lush to the end... @LushBandTweets @LushFanOfficial



I was among the many who were ecstatic to hear this time last year that Lush were reforming. They've had a successful year with a North American tour and appearances at many European festivals (see YouTube). They restarted things with appearances at the Roundhouse in Camden Town and then, sadly, the band came to an end with a final gig at Manchester Academy last Friday night.


They express the need to return to friends and families. We'd all rather they continued but respect their decision. It was a bonus to get some new music from them this year as well as some incredible performances.

Emma Anderson and Miki Berenyi led the band through a wonderful set, with songs that cascaded form melancholic fluffiness through to anger and passion. Miki dedicated 'Ladykillers' to Trump as he epitomised the misogynist men it was first written about- she joked they would rename it 'Pussygrabbers'. She also joked that her daughter had shown no loyalty by choosing to see Savages at Brixton Academy that night rather than support her mum's final Lush gig.

They sounded as sublime as when I first saw them live at Glastonbury in 1990, where they were on the rise but only had a Saturday lunchtime slot. Thanks Lush, you'll always be up there as one of my favourite ever bands - and this was the best gig of the year for me (and I've been fortunate to see over 80 acts so far, so that's saying something). 

I was swept on a tide of emotion and energy, tripping on the combination of Emma's amazing guitar playing and backing vox and Miki's powerful lyrics of cynicism, anger, loss and human nature. Rarely has a band moved me so much, from hope and lilting happiness to a shared despair of humanity. 25 years on, their music sounds as fresh and powerful as ever.


Linking with Our World Tuesday.






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