Manchester Skyline June 2018


RELOCATION… While Liverpool fell by the wayside in the competition for Channel 4’s headquarters and hub – with insiders despairing of the quality of the city’s bid, hinting that the city needed to do more than talk about Brookside – Manchester’s top brass are said to be quietly confident of landing the big prize. The C4 delegation, THING understands, was entertained in Ian Simpson’s stylish Beetham Tower pad, with “surprise guests” such as Maxine Peake dropping by to lend a hand. Lunch at the Mackie Mayor followed, where the waiting staff were very much in on the wooing plan, reeling off scripted lines about why Manchester should win. Is Brum still the favourite? It’s game on.


SERVICE GAME… One shouldn’t fall for silly season survey stories, but when there’s a survey carried out about motorway service stations and the mighty Tebay in Westmorland isn’t top of the pile, you have to wonder if the nation really has gone completely mad. Independent watchdog Transport Focus won a few headlines with its publication of the top five and bottom five services in 2018, as voted for by the public, and although Tebay and Killington Lake both made the top ten with 99% customer satisfaction, it still feels as if a stewards’ enquiry should be mounted.

Time Square Warrington CGI

A CGI of the finished cinema and leisure units at Time Square

CGI FRIDAY… Visualisers walk a fine line between inspiration and plagiarism, having to deliver a roughly accurate idea of how a scheme will look on completion, without pre-empting any negotiations going on with real-life occupiers. This latest image from Muse’s Time Square in Warrington at first glance shows a cinema-led project with your typical mix of mid-market food occupiers, but look closer and you can see this CGI has taken artistic licence with the array of restaurant brands. TGI Thursdays, Waganana and Dill’s are some of THING’s favourites, but considering the state of the market currently Muse might want to think again about whether Warrington is right for a Bryon or Carlussio’s.

St Helens Castle


Battlements are set to spring up all over Victoria Square in St Helens later in August, thanks to French artist Olivier Grossetete. Mottes and baileys, towers and drawbridges, all made by members of the community from cardboard boxes, tape and community spirit. Celebrating St Helens’ 150th anniversary, the installation commemorates the partnership with German town Stuttgart, by rebuilding part of Stuttgart’s 10th Century Old Castle. For the eco-friendly among you, once it’s all over, the ‘castle’ will be responsibly recycled. Check out the cardboard castle on Saturday 11 August 

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That pic of Manchester just shows how uninspiring the city skyline really is. Absolutely heaving with new developments but the skyline is simply bland. Nothing iconic about it.

By mancroad

Mancroad, the vast majority of the city centre isn’t even in that photo

By Anon

Where has an iconic skyline? London, NYC, Hong Kong? There aren’t many, I wouldn’t even say the Australian skylines are iconic.

By Welshie

Whether the HS2 comment was real, or just a handy excuse, it’s clear that Liverpool couldn’t win a goldfish at Uncle Joe’s Pier Head fairground with its current leadership. The proof is in the enormous pudding.

By Mike

Re Channel 4 – you can’t see Joe Anderson having the same charm.

By Anonymous

Most iconic skyline in the uk has to be Liverpool’s. I say it often. London’s is too spread out and disjointed

By Neston

@Neston hahahaha that’s funny, a city with one tall building, iconic skyline? More so than Londons? Deary me, London disjointed as it has various skylines more iconic that Liverpool’s none skyline, Deansgate Square is a better skyline in itself.

By Welshie

Shame economy doesn’t grow based on skyline alone!

By J

Edinburgh in the UK has the most iconic skyline but I would agree in England Liverpool,though Blackpool too is instantly recognisable.

By Elephant

Wake up guys: Birmingham is the big threat. When HS2 arrives they will be in London Zone 4 for travel time and developer confidence is high. Manchester and Liverpool should work together. Liverpool could have supported the Manchester C4 bid with the proviso of better rail commuting connections (a new interchange at Cornbrook and a 200m extension of Metrolink at Eccles).
Try thinking outside the (GM) box.

By Ian Wray

Actually I’d heard Liverpool’s was a pretty solid bid with lots of input from sector experts in Film Office, Screen School etc. So which ‘insiders’ say there was too much talk of Brookie? At C4 or so somewhere else? Given the huge amount Lime still make in the city now for C4 I somehow doubt it. Not sour grapes, there’s plenty of reasons I’m sure Liverpool didn’t get it, not least fractious Council led by big gob atm, but the pithy patronising in reporting towards Liverpool on this site is a bit much sometimes. Good thing Insider North West avoids such lame partisanship.

By Anonymous

It won’t be the slums of Salford , Granada and BBC did lose there way when they put offices there and from what I hear BBC hate it.

By Rob

I agree with anonymous on this, sometimes PNW is a little bit too dismissive of matters this side of the M6.

By Just saying

Goodness me that pic of Manchester makes it look good.

By Terry

Rob – whoever you heard that from is spinning you a good one…I’ve worked there as a contractor and that’s not the impression I had. Besides many programs such a Breakfast have much better viewing figures since they moved to the Quays – so all good on that front also.

By coolmanc

What a skyline

By Junior