England - Manchester

    

With approximately half a million inhabitants, the city of Manchester is one of the most populous in England. In fact, the larger county of Greater Manchester is actually the largest metropolitan area in all of the United Kingdom, which comprises England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Like many other areas of England, the region now known as Manchester was once occupied by the Celts. However, the Romans invaded and took over the district in the first century of our Common Era (CE), building a protective fort, which they called Mamucium (the root of the modern-day name, Manchester). It is believed that, during the third century, the Romans deserted Manchester for the most part.

In 1066, the Normans conquered the area, and played a major role in which areas were developed and which were left to go to waste, as was the case for most of Manchester. Then, in the 14th Century, records show that weavers of Flemish descent flocked into the Manchester area. These ones were, likely, the beginning of the area’s success in the textile industry. By the mid 16th Century, it had become one of the most respected epicentres for wools and linens. This lasted well into the 1700’s, when cotton boomed as a leading export and product. Such a successful industry demanded the constant development of the city’s infrastructure and accessibility. During the 19th Century, its textile factories had spread right across the county. The Industrial Revolution was a significant event in the history of Manchester, which was a key figure due to its flourishing industries.

Image of the iconic Beetham Tower in Manchester City Centre on a cold and frosty sunrise
Taken of the iconic Beetham Tower in Manchester City
Centre on a cold and frosty sunrise

Despite this wealth and abundance, there were also areas of Manchester that were of a shocking nature in terms of the destitution and squalor that prevailed. However, it was the Great Depression that hit Manchester’s industries the hardest. It was not until the 1980’s that a revitalisation of the city began to take effect. Large parts of the city were redeveloped, while those beyond rehabilitation were demolished completely. Today, its complex history and culture remain draw cards, both for locals and visitors.

Manchester is situated near to the well-known Pennine Hills and on the banks of the River Irwell. Because of the flatness of the city, development and construction has always been relatively easy. This feature also means that the snow-capped hills are visible from most of the urban areas during winter. Its climate is defined as “temperate maritime”, which means that it enjoys warm summers and cold winters. Compared with the rest of England, it experiences fairly high humidity levels.

Today, the economy is supported mainly by services, the media, finance and manufacturing, amongst others. It also benefits enormously by its fabulous retail offerings as well as its tourism industry.


Visitors are urged to see some of the following attractions:

• Chinatown
• The Manchester Town Hall
• The Lowry
• The People's History Museum
• The Manchester Museum
• Gay Village (in Canal Street)
• The Manchester Art Gallery
• The Jewish Museum
• Arndale Centre
• Heaton Park
• Museum of Science and Industry
• St. Ann's Square
• Market Street

For more information, please view: http://www.visitmanchester.com/