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Newsletter 1998 Week 2Monday the 12th of January 1998

The forecourt of the GMEX centre became a display area for hundreds of parked motorbikes belonging to bikers who had come to Manchester for a massive motorbike show, entrance 7.

The parked motorcycles were quite an attraction in themselves, but the real action was inside the GMEX hall, with lots of brand new motorbikes & accessories on display, as well as stalls, displays, plus a "wall of death". Later this week, the Holiday Show will open for three days.

Work proceeds on the Metrolink extension through Salford Quays to Eccles, while on the site of the former Didsbury railway station, a new shopping complex is under construction. Eventually the disused Old Trafford, Withington Didsbury railway line will be reinstated as a Metrolink tram route. The new line to Ashton will be the next to be built.

A construction worker was killed on the site of the new Trafford Centre this weekend. Kenneth Podmore from Heywood, fell 50 feet down a lift shaft and died of his injuries before arrival at Hope Hospital, Salford. There will be an inquiry into the incident.

Protesters formed a human chain in order to prevent the demolition of a community sports centre at Hazelbottom Road, Blackley. Workmen withdrew after three hours. The chemical company Zeneca intended to demolish the centre and sell the land. On the former protest site in Victoria Park, new halls of residence for Manchester University are taking shape.

The electricity supply company Norweb (which will soon start supplying gas) has withdrawn its financial support for a development at Wythenshawe Hospital. 60m in private funds and 30 from the government were to have been put up for a new mental health facility there.

A primary school in Lower Broughton, Salford is to be closed due to falling numbers. There were 300 pupils at Ascension Primary School in 1986, but that number had fallen to 86 ten years later. Local people wished that the school would remain open.

It's been a very mild week all over the UK. In Prestatyn, north Wales, the temperature hit 17 degrees celsius, warmer than many parts of the Mediterranean. The spring-like weather conditions are a result of warm southerly winds. But the wind direction is going to change, bringing colder air. Today, the sun was shining in Manchester, and it was mild and pleasant.

  • Tony Blair continues his official visit to Japan, and the Japanese PM Ryutaro Hashimoto apologises for his country's wartime actions.
  • On Sunday, Mr Blair telephones Mo Mowlam, Irish PM Bertie Ahern, Unionist leader David Trimble, and Republican leader Gerry Adams in connection with an imminent peace initiative.
  • On Friday, NI Secretary Mo Mowlam visited convicted Loyalist terrorists in the Maze prison to encourage them to support the peace process.
  • A severe ice storm in Canada continues to cause disruption, with 2m people in Quebec and Ontario still without electricity.
Have a look at the BBC for today's UK and world news.
MANCHESTER PUB QUIZ sponsored by Vini Maguire
Last week's pub was the Midway, so named because it's mid way between Manchester and Stockport. I say "was" the Midway, as it has now turned into "Biddy Mulligans". As a veteran of many real Irish pubs, including the Mulligans, in Poolbeg St, Dublin, I find it hard to accept, but it must be said that "Irishification" often brings music, a new crowd and lots of "craic" that wasn't there before.

This week's establishment has resisted the temptation to go Irish, and is situated very close to the former Hacienda. With its curved facade and chateau style tower, it's quite distinctive, but what's it called? Certainly not the United Street Inn (that was your clue!)

Dear Aiden,

Thanks for all the great work. I would love a "Flashback" to 15 August 1948, the year of my birth. I was born in Crumpsall hospital in Manchester

John Kellett cheers from the West coast of OZZ

The 15th of August 1948 is this week's Flashback

I am tracing my family tree. I am orginally from Stockport but have traced my ancestors back to Manchester. Have you any maps of Manchester for 1900 or earlier? The 2 streets I'm looking for are Chorlton Row and Egerton St, Higher Openshaw.

Chris Hibbert

I had a look for Egerton Street - it's on the old map, but not there now. It was just after the junction of Ashton Old Road and Lees Street.

As for Chorlton Row, I couldn't find it on the old map. It sounds like it was in the redeveloped area which is now occupied by the BBC, Mancunian Way, UMIST and new housing at Grosvenor Street. Chorlton-on-Medlock is virtually unrecogisable from what it was before the 60's and 70's redevelopment. Many streets, and buildings, disappeared, including Chorlton Row.

I have lived in Canada since 1966, I believe the M/C Evening News has a Column called "In Touch", I have been informed it is a column people can write to if they are trying to make contact with old friends or family.

Eric C. Gott

The address is as follows:
Manchester Evening News
164 Deansgate
Manchester M60 2RD

Hope you find your relatives.

Do you know about the Manchester Evening News's own website? It's at

Text and photos by Aidan O'Rourke


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