Manchester City Council



Not sure that it was necessarily in rank order but that's where Manchester appeared on Lonely Planet's list of the ten must visit places in the world. Being in the list is of course not a complete accident. Over the last couple of decades the city has polished up some of its historic assets, for example the City Art Gallery, John Rylands Library, Central Library, The Whitworth, Manchester Museum - the list could be a lot longer - and has created some new ones, for example Bridgewater Hall, the National Football Museum, Home. Parts of the city have been transformed including the city centre and we now offer a quality of life second to none, that has attracted highly skilled people to come from all over the country and all over the world to live and work here. That is driving economic growth and job creation in the city with a result that far more of our working age population are now in work. 

Image and perception do matter. Apart from tourism being a big industry in itself with the number of hotel rooms in the city increasing by 60% over the last decade (with more on the way), and bed nights sold increasing by 80%, how we are seen and reported is an important factor in attracting and retaining talent and growing a modern economy. It's an area where we need to continue to invest and I spent all of yesterday on a panel interviewing nine different architectural practices bidding to do the design work for the Factory, possibly the most exciting cultural project any where in the world. Don't think we will be in a position to finalise our decision until next week or the week after but I'm pretty certain we are going to end up with something truly remarkable, that will both stimulate and entertain existing residents as well as add to those visitors coming from around the globe.

There is one response to “Eighth”

  1. Steve Broadhead Says:

    With regard to the redevelopment of the former Granada Studios Site and the Factory Project. The Inland Waterways Association (IWA) Manchester Branch would like to enhance the above redevelopment project. In April of this year three members of the IWA Manchester Branch visited the basement of the Factory. On the other side of the steel security doors is the Manchester & Salford Junction Canal (M&SJC). I have some photos, please contact me if interested. The Factory building is built directly on the line of the canal. The above isn’t a major problem because the canal could be broken out of its tunnel and routed left of the above building. The redevelopment would then have a canal tunnel opening that visitors to the site should find very interesting. From the tunnel entrance that was originally built at Atherton Street the canal was a surface canal. There was a lock in the former Granada Studios car park until it was in filled. If Allied London were to construct the canal to the River Irwell. A canal restoration society could undertake the considerable civil engineering work required to connect the canal to the Rochdale canal via a tunnel and boat lift. Since a canal would significantly enhance the value of the above site it seems reasonable that the developer should pay for its construction within the former Granada Studios Site.

    The main issue IWA members have is that Allied London is intending to build across the line of the canal that will prevent it from being restored. IWA members think that restoration of the above canal would be a significant tourist attraction that should employ a reasonable number of people.

    The proposed canal restoration society would not need any money from the Council.

    On the other side of the River Irwell, the Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal (MB&BC) has been restored. Salford Council has some interesting planning proposals. Restoration the M&SJC would significantly benefit the above canal.

    If you are interested in the above and would like more info. please do not hesitate to contact me for more info. Stephen Broadhead –



The blog of the leader of Manchester City Council, Councillor Richard Leese.

Recent posts