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Meanwhile, across the Penines...

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A break in the journey, a break in the clouds.


MaggieD says:

I do like this, terracotta and blue, a wonderful combination ....

9th Mar 2008, 14:34

hildegard says:

Thank god for Grade II listed status. There's some truly execrable & silly buildings gone up in M'cr over the last few years & the Council has little of which to be proud in its attitude to historic buildings, but at least some of King Cotton survives.

9th Mar 2008, 14:46

MaggieD says:

yes, good to know that little pockets of 'King Cotton' survives ....

9th Mar 2008, 14:53

A bit of trivia, the roof of that building was used in the film Hell is a City


Second bit of trivia, there is a tunnel under Whitworth Street between that building and the Palace Theatre.

9th Mar 2008, 18:08

hildegard says:

They get a good deal of use for filming, I hear. The service tunnel, yes, think it was for bringing goods up from the canalside? The Palace is hard by the canal there...

9th Mar 2008, 18:31

Below the canal level h. It is about 3 or 4 stories below the stage level..

9th Mar 2008, 19:52

hildegard says:

Perfect for loading - everything comes straight to the basements from a hoist outside. So far, so normal coal & beer deliveries. To deliver all the coal needed for the terracotta business palaces along there would mean a wagon or two per building per day loading from the cut then driving in. Why bother offloading, putting into sacks & loading onto wagons when you could get the same or more in by barge - far more with a butty in tow & no need to package, just deliver in hundredweights. Before the resurfacing & whatnot of the towpath round there you could still see basement loading doors along the cut, but I never noticed the Palace's arrangements.

The Whitworth St/ Oxford Rd junction had heavy horsedrawn traffic, making a service tunnel from the canal seem expedient. The Refuge service rooms leading off the loading bay reached from the Whitworth St entrance (& equipped with a turning table for drays, wagons, etc )extend some way below street level, though I don't recall how many levels. ISTR 3, though it may even have been more.

Think my service tunnel sounds far-fetched? There was a tunnel under Cross Street big enough to take lorries to Boots' below-stairs storerooms from a giant lift near St Anne's Sq.

I like my theory & shall probably continue so to do until fact inevitably rains on my parade...

9th Mar 2008, 21:40

Sounds good enough to me :D

When I used to work at the Palace (and Opera House) I was amazed at just how far down below the stage it went.

9th Mar 2008, 21:48

biffadigital says:

King Cotton? It was an insurance building. You should see where they moved to? An industrial park in north Cheshire.

12th Mar 2008, 23:29

hildegard says:

King Cotton was where all the city's wealth originated. The Refuge Assurance was set up in 1835, by 1891 when Waterhouse Snr began building this terracotta monster, Lancashire mills' output formed 25% of Britain's exports, with Manchester as the central trading hub.

13th Mar 2008, 00:00