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Wednesday 21 March 2012

Photographs expose the marketing hype behind the 2012 Manchester Irish Festival Parade

As Manchester City Council cuts services and grants to various events, it’s essential that the public is able to have an honest debate about what should be funded.

Corporation StreetThe organisers and City Council exaggerate crowd numbers for this parade enormously, probably by a factor of ten, while the media fail to scrutinise and report accurately.

The photographs below show the true level of attendance at the 2012 Manchester Irish Festival Parade as it passed through the city centre on 11 March.

On the event’s website, the organisers claimed: “100,000 people are expected to flock to the city centre and line the three mile route” and that this was “one of Europe’s biggest St. Patrick’s Day Parades.”

Since the parade, they’ve continued. Claiming that: “Organisers said an estimated 12,000 were packed into Albert Square alone — with more than 100,000 lining the full parade route.” See below for more analysis of these figures.

I was first alerted to this last year by a fellow photographer who had gone along and afterwards expressed amazement at the low turn out as compared to the hype. So the small crowds this year aren’t anything new…
(more…)


Filed under: Manchester,Politics,The media — GS @ 6:56 pm
Wednesday 14 March 2012

The changing face of…?

Demolition in St. Peters Square, Manchester

You may struggle to identify this location at first glance because it looks so different. Certainly I got a big surprise last Sunday as I turned the corner from behind the Central Library.
(more…)


Filed under: Buildings,Bygone Manc,History,Manchester — GS @ 1:01 am
Monday 7 November 2011

Robert Rose — the West Indian “Bard of Colour” in 1840’s Manchester

Wealthy black gentleman was a poet who lived in Salford.

The Sun Inn in 1865

In the early 1840’s a literary group was formed. By 1842 it numbered about 40 and Robert Rose was the vice-chair of the second quarterly meeting on 24 March. He was a black man “of wealth” who lived in St. Stephen’s Street in Salford.

The group published a book of poetry called the Festive Wreath and their meeting place was the Sun Inn on Long Millgate, opposite Chetham’s Library. 80 years later it was still known as “Poets’Corner“.

The Festive Wreath

Update: 8 September 2012

I’m fascinated by this man who seems to go against many of the assumptions we have about what life was like for Black people 170 years ago.

I’ve removed my original post while I do further research and gather together what I’ve found so far. I kept adding more detail to the post and it just became a mess.

As a result of my inquiries and research, Robert Rose’s grave and headstone have been found at the cemetery at Harpurhey.


Filed under: History,Manchester — GS @ 3:53 pm
Saturday 22 October 2011

Outnorthwest front covers. Who knows who?

Frog in pond.

Photo: by Vera Kratochvil.

In the small pond that is gay Manchester, a couple of dozen people back-pat and promote each other. Publicity and awards are given. (more…)


Filed under: Gay,LGBT,Manchester — GS @ 6:09 pm
Thursday 20 October 2011

Manchester Pride charity figure for 2011

Manchester Pride has announced a figure of £105,000 for good causes.

However, only £98,000 of this amount was raised during the ten day festival. The other £7,000 came from fundraising at the Manchester Pride Dinner which took place in September 2010 — almost a year before. (more…)


Filed under: Gay,LGBT,Manchester — GS @ 9:38 pm
Monday 5 September 2011

A public discussion with Julia Grant (video)

Watch a video of the full two-hour discussion

Following my recent interview with Julia Grant, she suggested that perhaps I could organise a public discussion about the future of the August Bank Holiday event (which has been known as Manchester Pride since 2004) and the gay village.

This was arranged with the help of other members of the Facebook group Facts About Manchester Pride and was called: “Pull Your Fingers Out and Claim It Back” — a reference to something that Julia said in the interview.

The discussion took place on Thursday 25 August 2011 at the Hotel International on London Road, opposite Piccadilly Station.

The first half was about past and present. A chance for people to ask follow-up questions about the interview, or anything they’d ever wanted to ask Julia Grant. The second was about the future. What changes we would like to see and how to achieve those.

You can watch the whole thing here. It’s in four parts, with a total running time of 128 minutes.


Filed under: Gay,History,LGBT,Manchester,Politics,With video — GS @ 5:30 pm
Tuesday 30 August 2011

Fireworks on the final night of Manchester Pride 2011 (video)

Video of the fireworks display on the last night of Manchester Pride 2011

Traditionally, on the final day of Manchester Pride, there’s a display of fireworks after the HIV Vigil in Sackville Park.

This video was filmed from the top of a tall building to the south. This year I got ambitious and used two cameras!

Please be warned that this contains even more flashes than usual.

Here’s my video of last year’s display.


Filed under: Gay,LGBT,Manchester,With video — GS @ 5:49 pm
 
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