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1 September, 2004

Manchester landmarks

It's easy to be blasé about familiar places.  I've lived in Lancaster for eleven years, but only thought to take a few photos once I started this blog.  I've yet to visit any of the city's museums, even though local residents get free admission.

Likewise with Manchester. I've visited the city centre more times than I could count, yet I've never thought to take my camera. This was the world's first industrial city, and has splendid Nineteenth Century architecture commensurate with that status as a major commercial and administrative centre. Mid/late Twentieth Century decline was wiped away by the 1996 IRA bomb, and rebuilding has given the city a strikingly modern heart. If I hadn't seen it all so often, I'd be impressed. Time for a reappraisal, I think.

An opportunity was provided by the 'Cow Parade' public art festival, in which over 150 cast-resin statues of the ubiquitous bovines were decorated – painted, resculpted, even dressed – by artists and distributed across the city in locations which themselves tend to be noteworthy. Today I spent a few hours looking for them, and taking photographs. I may present those images in a different entry if/when I have an opportunity, but other photographers have already done that, and this photoset focused on the city itself.

I'd really recommend the experience. Go on; be a tourist in your home town, for once.

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